It’s early January, and for many people that means a New Year’s Resolution to lose weight. Unfortunately, it also means many advertisers aggressively promoting products that seem “too good to be true”. In most cases – too good to be true is exactly that: not true. Popular ones you may have seen are the ads for LeanSpa which has acai berry and colon cleansing supplements. There was also a powder sold over the last few years from Sensa. The ads said “sprinkle, eat, and lose weight.” Consumers spent over $350 million dollars just on the powder! And now, the Federal Trade Commission has just cracked down on these and several other companies. They’ve been charged with fraud for false advertising and making weight loss claims without evidence. Also included in the charges was HCG Diet Direct, which advertises weight loss based on the HCG hormone.
Although we all hope one day a miracle product will be found that makes us lose weight and become more health with no effort – there is nothing like that on the horizon. Jessica Rich, director of FTC’s consumer protection office said: “The chances of being successful just by sprinkling something on your food, rubbing cream on your thighs, or using a supplement are slim to none — the science just isn’t there.” Additionally, the millions of dollars spent on weight loss aids that don’t work, could have been put towards treatments that actually do work.
Even with bariatric surgery which is the only treatment with scientific evidence showing substantial weight loss for many people – the weight is not lost without hard work. All our successful patients are committed to follow up, changing their eating habits, and learning how to work with their surgeon and team to find successful weight loss. None of it comes from magic. Happy new years – and keep an eye out for anything that sounds ‘too good to be true’!