Lifestyle & Belief

Dr. Pierre Dukan, French diet guru, faces ethics hearing


French doctor Pierre Dukan faces an ethics hearing over comments he made regarding teenagers' BMIs.


Loic Venance

Dr. Pierre Dukan, creator of the famed Dukan diet, may lose his medical license after being accused of breaching medical guidelines by the French College of Physicians, BBC News reported

Dukan, whose high-protein diet was reportedly used by Kate Middleton before her wedding and is favored by a range of celebrities, is accused of failing to observe two articles in the doctor's code: lacking caution in considering how his statements could impact public health, and practicing medicine as a business, according to Agence France Presse

In January, the doctor recommended that students in their last two years of high school be awarded extra marks if they maintained an acceptable Body Mass Index (BMI), a measure of body fat based on height and weight, AFP reported. 

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Doctors who have lodged complaints against Dukan said he failed to take into account "possible repercussions on young girls who are already overweight or have a tendency towards anorexia," the Guardian reported

He faces an ethical hearing within the next six months, according to BBC. If found guilty, he could be reprimanded or struck off the medical register in France completely, BBC reported. 

France, like many European countries, has seen an increase in obesity in recent years. In 2009, the ministry of health found one in six French people was obese, BBC reported.

Dukan's strict, protein-based diet, despite being controversial, is incredibly popular: Dukan had three books in France's top 10 book sales in 2010, AFP reported. The diet is believed to be followed by about 2 million French people, according to the Guardian. 

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