Health: Drinking Yourself Skinny

Liquid diets are back in vogue, but are they safe?

When Lynette Sylvester weighed 259 lbs., she hated Jane Fonda. The movie star was everything that Sylvester, 42, wanted to be and wasn't: among other things, svelte and athletic. In fact, Sylvester's weight problem had become so severe that her physician recommended she have her stomach stapled. "I realized that if I didn't change my behavior, I would die," recalls the store owner from Burnsville, Minn. Determined, she went on a liquid-protein diet and lost 120 lbs. Now, a year later, down from a size 44 dress to size 10, Sylvester regards Fonda as her personal exercise guru.

Liquid diets, which...

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