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    US military gets liposuction to beat fat tests

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    There's a new threat facing the US military and it isn't Al-Qaeda. This new threat doesn't hide in the shadows. It gets right up in your face and it's called the expanding waistline.

    It appears that some military personnel have been having surgical procedures done to remove excess fat from their waists in an attempt to pass the Pentagon's body fat test, which uses neck and waist measurements and can determine if they move up the ranks in the military.

    "They come in panicked about being kicked out or getting a demerit that will hurt their chances at a promotion," said a Rockville, Md., surgeon.

    Some soldiers have been complaining that the Pentagon's method of measuring body fat does help eliminate flabby builds, but it also may be unfair for bulkier, muscular builds.

    Defense officials say the test helps to see if troops are ready for combat. The military does not allow surgically altering one's body to pass the test, but liposuction is not prohibited.

    The tape test uses neck and waist measurements instead of body mass index.
    Soldiers that fail the test must spend months in a hardcore exercise and nutrition program, which Marines call "pork chop platoon" or "doughnut brigade." Failing the tape test three times can be ground for getting kicked out.

    The number of Army soldiers kicked out for being overweight has jumped tenfold in the past five years from 168 to 2008 to 1,815. In the Marine Corps, the number almost doubled from 102 in 2010 to 186 in 2011 but fell to 132 last year.


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