Blogging Sundance: Dropping Pounds with alli

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Where do celebrities, studio execs, and ungodly amounts of snow collide? The Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah. I'm chilling (literally—it's 14 degrees!) at the ski resort for a couple days thanks to GlaxoSmithKline, the pharma company. GSK brought a bunch of health journalists out to the mountains to talk about alli, the diet pill, and announce some news about the brand.

I love movie screenings and star sightings (last night: Jared Leto, Adrien Grenier, Harvey Weinstein—in order of my excitement) as much as the next girl. But I'm also curious about alli—it's the only FDA approved diet pill out there, and since being on the market for two years has gotten as many ecstatic user reviews as pans for its "treatment effects." So I was curious to learn more about it. (Basically— and I'm no scientist—the pill cuts out about a quarter of the fat you consume during a meal. Any fat you eat over the recommended 15-20 grams per meal passes straight through you and into the toilet—the idea is you'll soon want to pass on seconds of soft-serve!)

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Last night, we met some senior GSK execs who told us about a survey they did on attitudes toward obesity and emotional eating in America, something they're doing tons of research on as Americans get fatter and fatter and… even fatter. According to them, the next generation of American kids may be the first to die before their parents, thanks to sky-rocketing rates of obesity related health concerns. That's scary!

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Today, we're going to a panel discussion and lunch, where Ricki Lake, model Emme, Tom Arnold, and some other great experts are going to weigh in on obesity and the idea of emotional eating, as well as announce a new film project that alli is sponsoring.

I can definitely relate to this concept of mindless and emotional eating, having chased many a stressful meeting with a bowl of mac 'n' cheese, and polished off too many buckets of popcorn without a pause. I'll be sure to check in later with an update from lunch… But for now, I just love the fact that all this focus on obesity and eating is happening smack in the middle of Park City, which might as well be the Hollywood Hills this week. Seriously, you can't throw a mitten here without hitting a feather-light model or waify starlet clad in skin-tight jeans, boots, and fur. Maybe they're all taking alli!

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