While many readers may be aware of the fact that today’s army is a lot flabbier than in the past, it many surprise them to learn that an increasing number of military personnel are now turning to plastic surgeons for liposuction in a desperate attempt to help them pass the Pentagon’s body fat test.
The test, which uses tape measures to determine the size of soldiers’ necks as well as waists rather than the body mass index used by civilians does not take into consideration “bulkier, muscular builds,” however when determining who may be “weeded” out of the service, and has been labeled unfair by many.
“They come in panicked about being kicked out or getting a demerit that will hurt their chances of a promotion,” commented Rockville, MD plastic surgeon Adam Tattelbaum, who has been called upon to perform quick liposuction by many soldiers.
While many experts are now calling upon the Pentagon to revamp its fitness standards, noting that just because most Americans are larger than in the past, it does not mean they are less healthy. However the Department of Defense insists, “Only a small fraction of service personnel who exceed its body fat limits perform well on fitness tests.”
“We want everyone to succeed,” stated Bill Moore, director of the Navy’s Physical Readiness Program. “This isn’t an organization that trains them and says, ‘Hey, get the heck out.’”
It was also noted that while liposuction is not banned by the military, it does not “condone altering one’s body surgically to pass the body fat test.”