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Lies You Tell: 3 Popular Instagram Fads That Won’t Help You Lose Weight

Avatar • Oct 30, 2015

Waist Training

waist trainer

WaistGang Society Source

This is probably the most popular trend on the Instagram platform by far. This trend has been going strong since 2014. With tags such as #waisttraining #waistgangsociety #getwaisted and celebrity endorsements from a reality TV stars, this concept of waist training has bubbled over. The idea is that you will gradually shed inches off your waist by wearing the constricting corset-device for sometimes up to 12 hours in a day. From the website of a popular brand of waist training corsets:

high quality Reshaping waistshaper is a unique latex material which attacks unwanted fat and impurities within your body. Our reshaping line will strengthen your core all the while improving your posture. The thermogenisis created within your body will allow your body to rid itself of harsh toxins and impurities, through perspiration. While wearing a garment or waist trainer , the tight compression will help to reduce food volume intake which will help acheive the healthier practice of smaller meals, more often, rather than three large meals a day.

Now while that might sound like enough to get you to pull out your credit card and throw it in the bag, health experts like Christopher Ochner PhD insist there are no shortcuts to weight loss:

 “Spot reducing doesn’t exist,” says Ochner. “You can’t reduce the collection of fat in any one particular area of your body. If you push your stomach in, all the fat will go right back to where it was no matter how long [you wear the corset] for.”

There’s also the matter of passing out, fractured ribs, crushed organs and lungs that make the idea of subscribing to the Victorian-era device to be nothing more than a waste of time. (or “waist” of time–get the pun? Nvm.)

Body Wraps

bodywraps

Youtuber Danielle Stewart demonstrating a bodywrap for temporary weight loss Source

*A Different World Mr. Gaines Voice* “Now why on earth would anyone want to wrap themselves tighter than last night’s leftovers in saran wrap in the name of losing weight?” This method was first popular in the late 80s and early 90s and known as “herbal wraps.” Now, the idea of body wraps for weight loss have reappeared singing the same old tune. There are different types of wraps: plastic (saran-wrap style), mineral-soaked bandages and clay. Now while body wraps have been shown to reduce water weight by dehydration, the weight loss is temporary and returns within a few days. Consequentially, this is also very dangerous according to Dr. Victor Herbert of Mt. Sinai Veterans Research Center:

Be 6 to 20 inches slimmer today by dehydrating yourself? Sure,” Herbert said. “And you can also kill yourself … because you can throw somebody into what we call hypovolemic shock. That’s low blood volume shock by dehydrating you.”

In 1985, FDA Consumer Magazine denounced any claim to effectiveness of these so-called wrapping treatments:

There is no scientific or clinical evidence to support the use of body wraps or sauna suits for controlling weight. Nor is there any data to back up promoters’ claims that these products will eliminate cellulite and bulging fat, or make “spot reductions” possible, or improve the “calorie burn rate,” or control appetite. Accordingly, there are no FDA-approved body wraps or sauna suits.

Just like double popped collars and jerri curls, we should leave this trend in the 80s.

Detox Teas

instablogger meme

Yes, I made myself into a meme. Shoutout to 99cent teas!

One of the newest trends is to bubble off on IG are detox teas or teatoxes. Bloggers who are more than likely just naturally skinny will pose with the teas and caption the photos “I use ABC teatox to get my flat tummy.” These teas claim to get rid of toxins in your body which in turn will help you shed pounds. Registered Dietitian, Cynthia Sass points out since teas are often encouraged to be used alongside diet and exercise, it’s difficult to decipher their true effectiveness:

…difficult to know whether the weight-loss results people are getting from these teas are actually due to drinking them, or simply the result of a cleaned-up diet and consistent workout routine, which we already know can lead to weight loss.

These teas typically contain a mixture of laxatives to flush out your colon and diuretics which trigger the loss of “water weight.” Yes, just like the body wraps, true fat isn’t being lost. In fact, if you ever stop drinking the teas, that weight will return. Many times a natural laxative called senna is used in these teas and too much of senna brings on the bubble guts according to the Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database:

the potential side effects of senna use may include abdominal pain and discomfort, cramps, bloating, gas, nausea, and diarrhea; excessive use can lead to potassium depletion and other electrolyte abnormalities, which can trigger muscle spasms and an abnormal heart rhythm.

So there you have it. Believe the hype or don’t. However, there’s just no substitute for good old fashioned exercise and cutting down on the macaroni and cheese intake. (Oh, yes, that one was about me!)

Have you succumbed to any of these instagram fads?

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About Rinny

Texan by birth, Los Angeleno by situation. Lover of Tame Impala and Shoegaze music. Comedian by trade. Macaroni and Cheese connoisseur by appetite.

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Del
5 years ago

No way! I can’t even believe corsets are making a comeback. Talk about dangerous! As hard as it is sometimes to exercise and eat healthy most of the time (I have cheat days, too), the payoff is so worth it. Temporary “fixes” lead to temporary results.

Christina J
5 years ago

Yes!!! *A Different World Mr. Gaines Voice* I surely read it like that too lol great article!

Leighton
Leighton
5 years ago

I’m so glad you brought this up. There are so many women who are stocking up on waste trainers and detox teas instead of changing their diets and exercising. The best part is that these detox teas can cost up to $40 but the active ingredient, which is usually a “gentle” laxative, costs no more than $4.00 at a drugstore. Don’t be fooled

Philly Jawn
Philly Jawn
5 years ago

waist trainers” that name alone . and that fit tea like really?

Chevanne
5 years ago

Your liver, kidneys and lymphatic system do a great job of detoxing. As for “waist training”, you’d have to start with 2nd graders to get those impossibly small waists.

Monique
Monique
5 years ago

I already have a flat stomach and slim waist so no I haven’t. I just go to the gym a couple times a week .

kia
kia
5 years ago

there’s no short-cut to losing weight.…don’t be lazy. put in the work.

Saran
Saran
5 years ago

@the author of the article you’re beautiful. i actualy thought it was stock photo. that’s all I have to say!

BGLHRinny
BGLHRinny
5 years ago
Reply to  Saran

Awww! Thank you!

BGLHRinny
BGLHRinny
5 years ago

These devices are marketed as corsets. So.…

EllieLo
EllieLo
5 years ago

I don’t knock detox teas.….when they’re used correctly. I don’t use them often, but when I do, it’s for the named purpose: to detox.
It works nicely after holidays or periods when you’ve been eating crap to get your body back on the right track with clean/cleaner eating.

But straight up detox teas as the solution to weight loss? Nah, son.

Robin
Robin
5 years ago

Um, those “waist trainer” shapers are not real corsets. I have some real corsets. One of them was custom made for me, to my measurements. A real corset should be very well made, with steel boning (not plastic boning or, worse, no boning at all), sturdy high-quality stitching, a lining, and preferably a modesty panel in back to protect your back from lace burn (just like the tongue of a running shoe protects your foot from lace burn). If the corset has a busk (a row of hooks in front), it won’t be a row of hooks and eyes that… Read more »

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