Weight Loss Scam Artists
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Weight Loss Scam Artists

The Unites States Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Surgeon General reports that 61% of Americans are overweight. One of the cruelest schemes of all is the promise of weight loss to people who have become desperate to lose weight.

Weight Loss Schemes

The Unites States Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Surgeon General reports that 61% of Americans are overweight. One of the cruelest schemes of all is the promise of weight loss to people who have become desperate to lose weight. Not only do weight loss schemes lighten only the wallet of victims they also dash the dreams and hopes of those hoping for the magic bullet in their battle against obesity.

Statistics

As recently as 2006, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) reports as many as 30.2 million Americans have fallen victim to a scam involving weight loss. That is an astounding 13.2% of the adult United State’s population or approximately one in every seven adults. The FTC goes on to state that “weight loss schemes” have more victims than any of the other frauds that have been surveyed.

The Magnetic Back Magnet by Ace Magnetics

In the infomercials, a spokesperson for Ace Magnetics (a paid actor) interviews people who claim to be physicians, physical therapists, and sports experts (whom are also just paid actors themselves); all touting the ‘wonderful benefits’ of this blatant weight loss scheme.

The claim is simple: Place these magnets on your back to aid circulation, immunity to disease, and to help the body reach its prime physical shape.

The sad reality of the offer is that neither the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), nor the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), has ever approved the use of magnets being placed directly on the skin as an acceptable form of any type of therapy.

The Gym Fitness by ABS Toning

The claim is that “ten minutes equals 600 sit-ups.” This claim is disturbingly unrealistic. Infomercials prey on late night viewers and enticed the viewers to try their product. In the infomercials, beautiful, thin models (all exclaiming amazement at their weight loss results) lounged by the pool. This deceptive advertising fooled many.

Recent FDA reports indicate that only a slight degree of toning is even possible via electrical stimulation. In this case, and many other weight loss schemes, the FTC has managed to close many of these businesses for fraudulent claims.

The Power Wrap by Suddenly Slender

This concept seems simple enough. Perhaps that’s why so many fell for this weight loss scheme so quickly. The claim is that by wearing The Power Wrap a body would lose inches and pounds of water-weight by simple perspiration. Putting the “sauna suit” on, and waiting a few minutes, was all that’s required to take the inches off.

The reality is, just a few short minutes after removing the suit, the inches come back. While the wrap caused temporary water displacement, and appeared to work fine, the body always reverts to its natural shape and dimensions. For some consumers with circulatory issues this device was quite dangerous.

Tips for “Real” Weight Loss

The United States Surgeon General has given several proven weight loss tips for people suffering from obesity. Physical activity combined with calorie reduction is the best way to achieve and maintain weight loss. Start with a low impact exercise such as walking. Maintaining your weight once you achieve your desired weight loss means that your intake of calories must equal your output of energy.

Sources:

http://www.surgeongeneral.gov/topics/obesity/calltoaction/fact_whatcanyoudo.htm

http://www.webefit.com/articles/article_22_Decep_Gadgets.html

http://www.consumeraffairs.com/news04/2007/10/ftc_scams.html

http://www.newyork.bbb.org/article/3130

http://www.wkyc.com/news/news_links/links_article.aspx?storyid=80943

 

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Comments (9)

great article, thanks for the info. I suppose this is somewhat reminiscent of those hoping to win the lottery... People who can't afford to spend the money in the first place, hoping to win millions who have a one in a billion chance. : /

Great points on weight loss awareness. Please check out my article similar the weight loss... http://factoidz.com/surefire-solution-to-dieting/.....thank you.

The companies marketing products like these remind me of predatory lenders. They prey upon those who are desperate for the sake of profit. Thanks for a well done article.

I hadn't heard of any of these, but know that weight loss scams are all over the internet, in ads in magazines and on tv - thanks for the truth about these and you are absolutely right - exercise and healthy eating is the only true way to lose weight

My husband ordered a vibratory waist belt that promised to help him lose weight from the teleshopping channel. Needles to say it did not work. Total waste of money.

Thanks for the warning.

Well done! I've seen those scam infomercials.. It's amazing how people will believe in them.

I have recently heard about the HCG injection diet - (a hormone from the urine of a pregnant woman). It is in the form of injections and a 500 calorie a day diet is followed. You lose weight apparantly - go figure - 500 calories a day hmmmm. The scariest part is that people are allowing untrained everyday lay people to inject them with this substance and often times it comes from Mexico and is unregulated and who knows what is in those ampules???!!!!

Not to mention potentially dirty needles. I actually know one person who has done this.

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