Three American men made the unusual decision to move to China in an attempt to shed weight at a fat-reduction clinic. In the process, they have become surprise local celebrities.
“The reason why I think it works here is that China is away from everything, all the stuff that I’m familiar with,” said Alonzo Bland, 33. He and brothers Walt and David Anderson, 56 and 50, have lived in the northern Chinese city of Tianjin since the middle of this year.
Alonzo decided to go to China after winning a contest organized by China Connection, an American company that promotes traditional Chinese medicine. He, along with Walt and David, were being treated free of charge for as long as it took to meet their goal weight.
Besides daily acupuncture treatments, which doctors say increases metabolism rate and reduces appetite, they exercise twice a day and stick to good nutrition. As one would expect, it’s more Chinese-style eating with rice, fried vegetables (fried?), tofu, meat, and soup.
Extreme health issues called for extreme measures. Which is why they decided to head for China.
“Before I came over, it got to the point that I couldn’t walk 20 feet without gasping for breath,” said David.
Alonzo was in even more desperate straits – he had a tracheotomy in 2000 because the fat in his face was pressing down on his windpipe.
Most people wouldn’t have made such a dramatic commitment, leaving friends and family. But it’s worked. The group has put together a total weight loss of 427 pounds. You can see a slideshow of the guys’ exploits here.