September 13, 2021 — Hey, have you heard about the new miraculous fat loss product?
This is a special tea that you might see advertised in a magazine.
Or a Kardashian-promoted lollipop.
Or a rubber vest that you zip tightly around your belly, as depicted in a TV commercial.
Or… or… or…
Health scams cost consumers countless millions. Together obesity There is a serious problem, we are sensitive to marketing that promises to keep us healthy, slim or strong. For accurate information and strategies, rely on your doctor and verifiable weight loss organizations, not someone advertising a quick solution in exchange for your money.
Here’s how to identify some related claims and make the right choice for your health, Health, and wallet.
How the government advises consumers
“Unscrupulous advertisers will tell you anything to get you to buy weight loss products,” says the Federal Trade Commission. Here are some false promises that companies and people often make:
- lose weight without Abstinence Or work out.
- Eat whatever you want and still lose weight.
- Lose 30 pounds in 30 days.
- This patch or cream will burn fat.
“Any promise of miraculous weight loss is simply untrue,” the FTC says. “There’s no magic way to lose weight without a sensible diet and regular exercise.”
Moreover, such claims are not always harmless. For example, “free” trial offers often cause consumers to spend money and are billed for recurring shipments of products they don’t want. and the FDA has found that some dietary supplements Contain potentially harmful drugs or chemicals that are not listed on the label.
Federal law does not require that dietary supplements be proven safe, or that their claims be true, before they can be sold. The FDA states that some supplements, including nutrients and plant components, can be toxic.
To make sure you’re getting a good quality product, look for a seal of approval from the US Pharmacopeia, ConsumerLab, or NSF International, which tests products and verifies ingredients.
what can be harmful
Some products that promote weight loss and sports performance contain ingredients that aren’t listed on the label, says Peter Cohen, MD, a doctor at the Cambridge Health Alliance.
In March, he and his colleagues said they tested 17 brands and found nine banned stimulants. About half of the brands contained at least one prohibited stimulant.
In 2016, Consumer Reports listed 15 supplement ingredients that could be harmful.
The list contains ingredients that claim to help with weight loss but can cause recovery, cardiac arrest, kidney and liver problems, or even death, Consumer Reports wrote. These include caffeine powder, chaparral, germander, and green tea Remove powder.
The risk may depend on health status and other factors, such as interactions with prescription drugs or over-the-counter medicine.
“Furthermore, our experts agree that none of these supplement ingredients provide sufficient health benefits to justify the risk,” Consumer Reports wrote.
Some weight loss products, including the “flat tummy” lollipops promoted by Kim Kardashian, contain satire. This is an extract of saffron, which has long been promoted for improving mood and menstrual symptoms. Manufacturers say it has been proven to reduce snacking as well, but this has not been shown to be definitive.
And appetite suppressants don’t contain any nutrients—the good stuff we all need from food like vitamins, minerals, and fiber.
not just for weight loss
In addition to weight loss, sports performance is a major attraction for consumers who want an athletic edge. Maybe they eat right and train often, but they want some extra boost.
At best, results vary between people, and scientific reviews are often mixed. Talk to your doctor before trying something you’re not sure about. If you feel better spending money on a protein bar, it can be harmless, if often expensive. But it may not be necessary or even helpful.
The FDA offers these tips for being a “savvy supplement” buyer.
- Use non-commercial websites (such as the FDA and National Institutes of Health) rather than vendors.
- If something sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
- Watch out for claims of “no side effects” and “work better than a prescription drug.”
- “Natural” does not mean “safe”.
A coach’s favorite myth
Our desire for quick fixes helps dispel myths about fat loss, says Anthony Wilkins, co-owner of Alloy Personal Training for Women near Atlanta. He says that customers often ask him about a new product they have seen an advertisement for. They may have been told that they sweat a lot or are in pain to get a good workout. False ads often promote similar lies — as well as endless products for fat loss teas and lollipops.
Wilkins attributes these solutions to persistent myths.
- Muscle does not weigh more than fat. “One pound of fat weighs equal to one pound of muscle. That same pound of muscle takes up less space than that pound of fat. This means you can’t lose weight, but still be very lean and lean. Drop inches can happen.”
- You can’t “reduce the spot” and lose fat where you want. “You can train certain parts of the body to improve, but you have no control over where you lose fat,” Wilkins says. “Instead focus on maintaining a consistent level of strength training and good nutritional habits. “
- Wearing a “waist trainer” won’t give you six-pack abs. “It will show you that your waist will be slim when you’re wearing it,” he says. “But it doesn’t burn fat, build muscle, or do anything health-related.”
All you need is regular exercise and a healthy diet — not something that comes in a box or bottle.
A ‘miracle’ probably isn’t
“Many so-called miracle weight loss supplements and foods (including tea and coffee) do not live up to their claims and can cause serious harm,” says FDA spokeswoman Courtney Rhodes.
“Products that are not proven to be safe and effective for those purposes not only cheat consumers’ money, but can also delay proper diagnosis and treatment of a potentially serious condition and put people at risk of serious injury.” can.”
People should not use dietary supplements in place of real food. And, Rhodes says, some contain ingredients that “have strong biological effects, and such products may not be safe in all people.”
The FDA states that dietary supplements are not intended to treat or cure any disease; They can be harmful if used improperly; And they can have unwanted effects before, during, and after surgery.
Eating better is often the solution
“For the most part, if a person eats a wide variety of foods, nutritional supplementation may not be necessary,” says nutritionist Angel Planels, M.D., spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.
A multivitamin can help for those who may be missing out on certain fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and fiber, he says. But it will not provide us with the fluids and fiber we get from these foods.
Talk to your doctor about any supplements you consider.
“Taking care of our health by eating well, being physically active, taking care of our mental health, and getting enough sleep to rest and recover requires hard work and effort,” Planels says.
“save your money supplies, and let’s try to eat better.”