Cheating to Lose Weight

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The Internet, infomercials, and television are always full of the new secret to lose weight. Yet the real “secret” is that there is no secret outside of controlling calories consumed through diet and burning off fat stores through exercise. Still, many people around the world indulge in weight loss “cheats” that are purported to help you lose weight, even though many, while not illegal can be ineffective or dangerous to your health. Former exercise and nutrition specialist for the military, Harley Pasternack, blogged for People about the most common ways people use as shortcuts to attaining their fitness goals, and why you should cut them out of your plan.

Stimulants: People take stimulants to increase energy, slow down appetite, thus gaining the extra boost they need to shave off pounds. However, these medications can cause hallucinations, heart attacks, and sleep loss through insomnia.

Appetite Suppresants (Anoretics): Some people use prescription medications like nicotine patches or migraine medicine for the side effect of reducing appetite. Abusing one drug intended to treat another condition is dangerous. Additionally, there is a new class of appetite suppressants that purport smelling their product will decrease food cravings. They have not been proven to achieve long term weight loss.

Duiretics: Sometimes called water-pills, diuretics cause you to urinate more often, and expel water from the body, which the body needs in order to function. They can cause weight loss by temporarily dehydrating your body, reducing its 70% composition of water. This can cause headaches, dizziness, muscle cramping, or in more serious cases lead to low blood pressure or irregular heartbeat.

Fat Blockers: Fat blockers work by preventing the body from absorbing fat and calories after you have eaten, which leads to weight loss through calorie reduction. However, these products, while proven effective, are known for a host of awful side effects including the notoriously reported, anal leakage.

Laxatives: Laxatives stimulate your bowels and colon to expel food and fluids. However, these do not reduce calories absorbed, as the food only reaches that point after it is digested by the body. Instead, it removes crucial fluids and nutrients which can cause severe organ damage with long-term use.

Colonics: Colonics rinse your colon by injecting water. While those who support their use claim they detoxify the body, most agree that the body detoxifies itself, and these treatments can be dangerous.

If you are trying to lose weight, avoid these common pitfalls and instead use the only proven method to work: eating healthy, and exercising more.

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