Struggling to lose weight? Here’s a quick, non-invasive treatment that might be right for you. We find out more about the Allurion gastric balloon program for weight loss.
Why worry about obesity?
Obesity rates are on the rise around the world – and Hong Kong is no exception. According to Hong Kong Population Health Surveys, around 30 percent of the adult population in HK are obese, while another 20 percent are overweight. This was a trend before COVID, but the move to work from home has meant some people are now less active than ever before.
Being overweight or obese can affect more than just your confidence and self-esteem. It can also increase your risk of conditions like diabetes, arthritis, heart attacks, strokes and some cancers.
A quick and non-invasive solution
In the long run, having a healthy diet and getting plenty of regular exercise can help you stave off weight gain. However, there are some great non-invasive solutions you can consider if you need a bit of extra help on your weight-loss journey.
One of these is the Allurion Balloon (formerly known as the Elipse Balloon). This swallowable intra-gastric weight-loss balloon helps to control food intake. It takes up space in a your stomach, creating a feeling of fullness and resulting in you eating less. Since its launch, over 80,000 Allurion Balloons have been placed worldwide. It’s proven to be a safe and effective way to lose weight.
How it works
Placement of an Allurion Balloon can take as little 15 minutes – and it does not require surgery, anesthesia or endoscopy. The deflated balloon is housed in a small pill-sized capsule that’s attached to a thin tube called a catheter. During a short consultation with your doctor, you swallow the capsule with a glass of water. A simple x-ray is done to make sure the capsule is in place.
Your doctor then uses the catheter to inflate the balloon with a small amount of water. A second x-ray is conducted to check the balloon has properly inflated and the tube is then gently detached from the balloon and placement is complete. After approximately four months, the balloon will automatically deflate and pass out of your digestive system naturally. Kick-starting weight loss the balloon helps you to feel fuller faster and for longer, which in turn helps you to control your food intake. But it’s not a “magic bullet”. Instead, it’s a way to kick-start weight loss, buying you time to get into healthier eating and exercise habits.
The balloon comes as part of a six-month holistic weight-loss program that includes support and guidance from a nutritionist. There are also tech aids like an Allurion Connected Scale, a health tracker and an app to help you monitor your progress. On average, people who try the Allurion Balloon lose between 10 and 15 percent of their total body weight.
The next step
So, if you’re aged between 18 and 65, and have a BMI (Body Mass Index) of more than 27, the Allurion Balloon program may be an option for you. It’s most suited to people who, having had little success with dieting, are ready and willing to make a positive change.
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This article first appeared in the Summer 2022 issue of Expat Living magazine. Subscribe now so you never miss an issue.