Weighing In: Quick fixes like flushing cash


A friend recently asked, "Have you heard about those wraps?" referring to a body wrap that is supposed to help tone the midsection and reduce the appearance of cellulite in a matter of minutes. Results last for about a month.

After an eye roll, I explained to my friend that I have been approached multiple times by salespeople wanting me to buy one. I don't know a lot about them and how they are supposed to work, but I don't feel like I need to know.

I try to avoid products or equipment that promise me anything spectacular in a short amount of time.

This is how the weight loss and diet industry always has worked. It works because we don't want to. It feeds on the desperation of people who want a quick fix. According to market research, the industry pulled in $61 billion in 2012, a slight increase from the previous year.

Now if every product worked and people were cured of obesity and/or the after effects, then the industry would go out of business really quickly. But it doesn't because you have to continue using the products to keep the results. Besides, most pills and other products will state on its packaging that it works best with exercise, a good diet and an increase in water consumption. So if you do lose weight, you can be sure it's because you did what you could have done without buying anything.

I understand, though, why people get fed up and look for the newest fad. I know from experience how it feels to just want the fat to miraculously disappear because losing weight is hard work that never goes away. Once you start, you have to continue doing what you did to keep those results.

It's easy to get caught up in "just maybe this is the thing that will help me," especially with enticing advertising.

According to the Federal Trade Commission, buzzwords to be wary of include: "lose 30 pounds in 30 days," "eat your favorite foods and still lose weight," "absorbs fat" and "new scientific/medical breakthrough." Why not just put money in the toilet and flush it?

For most of us, weight loss will happen if we put in the work. Watch your portions, drink more water, eat real food and get up and move. We can debate all day long how difficult or impractical it is to do that in today's culture, but that is the solution, nonetheless.





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