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Like many people who struggle to lose weight, Dalila Bahi tried plenty of diets. And like many people who go on diets, she always regained what she lost. By her own account, the 27-year-old nurse loves sweets, from chocolate cake to cheesecake, and lives in one of the world’s most tempting cities for desserts: Lyon, France.

In February, with her weight up to 227 pounds, she decided to try something new. Bahi’s doctor gave her a large capsule developed by a Natick, Mass., biotech startup. It contained a deflated balloon attached to a thin catheter. After she swallowed the pill, the doctor filled the polyurethane balloon with about 2 ½ cups of water, then pulled the catheter out of her mouth. It all took about half an hour.

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