Friday, January 14, 2011

The Skinny on Fat

Everyone wants to be skinny. Even skinny people want to be skinnier. Even people like me who think a good steak meal > that dress I would have wanted to wear to a party but now I feel too fat to wear it complain about wanting to be go back to our college weight.

Thing is, regardless of how much my friends and I wish the whole Botticelli look would replace looking emaciated, we don't think that is going to happen anytime soon.

See, they all have guts.Literally.

There are so many treatments, diets and products out in the market that are totally riding on the skinny wave. Some, such as the ancient Bangkok Pills of the late 90's are clearly bad for you and others come in the form or wraps and crazy contraptions.

Pills > I personally have never tried taking any fat burning pills, but here's what I feel about them-- Work out, eat healthy and you won't need to take any pills! I sometimes feel as if people use them as a substitute for having a healthy lifestyle or justification for eating poorly I am not saying they don't work or are discrediting them in any way, but what advertising fails to mention is that those with success stories taking them worked hard to achieve their weight loss through a change in lifestyle and not ONLY taking the pills.

Machines and Wraps> I tried the Fat Mobilization Treatment a few times at Marie France a few years back and did not enjoy a single second of it. The cold wrap made me feel like someone rubbed menthol all over the lower half of my body and left me in a room for 25 minutes. To be fair, they check you before and after every session and there was a few mm to cm loss during each treatment, but it is so miniscule that again I will say--- change in lifestyle is what makes you lose weight and keep it off. Programs like this one will help eliminate the last few bits of pudge here and there but it's not going to turn you from Oprah to Kate Moss if you rely on it completely.

Another machine I tried at Marie France was the UltraShape. Unlike the freezing cold FMS, this was the total opposite, targeting your problem areas with extreme heat instead. It was less uncomfortable, save for some moments when I felt like the machine was burning through my skin. I don't know if I wasn't overweight enough to see any real results, but again, they will measure you before and after and although there is a change, don't expect anything drastic.

The only thing that I ever saw a real, obvious change with were the couple times I tried Mesotherapy. I was curious to see if it really worked and felt like I could deal with a few needle pricks and a couple of days of bruising. Let me just say, the needles hurt but are bearable, but the after-effects HURT LIKE A BITCH. It feels like you did a million crunches without stretching and with no rest. No joke. By the 3rd or 4th day though, you will see a difference. I did mine on my stomach and it got so flat. But, even if one of these "quick fixes" actually works, I wouldn't recommend it on a weekly basis. As the doctor at Aesthetic Science Clinic told me, save it for a special occasion or as a reward to get rid of that last bit of fat after months of working out and eating healthy. Don't use it as a replacement for a healthy lifestyle.

Another invasive thing I tried was getting L-Carnatine injected into me. L-Carnatine naturally occurs in our body, but taking it as an injection as I did will speed up the process drastically. I was warned that I would be more hyper than usual after being given the shot, and that most people did it before working out because it gives them an extra boost, which allows them to work out more efficiently and for a longer amount of time. Well, apparently, my veins are too small or skinny or something that after one of them collapsed, they had to find another one to inject it into. it hurt SO much that I cried. Yes, I cried. And afterward, I felt a really uncomfortable burning sensation in my arm as the L-Carnatine passed through my vein and decided then and there that I was never going to do that shit ever again. Screw that, I'll take Red Bull if I want more energy!

Creams and Lotions> If these work in any way it is to a very tiny degree. So tiny, in fact, that I wouldn't recommend spending your hard earned cash on these products. I mean, really, how much can a lotion actually help in shaping your body or helping you "tone"? Shiseido had this product a few years back called the Body Creator that was supposed to make skin silky smooth, lessen cellulite and stretch marks and contour the body. Although I wanted it so badly to work, the only thing it really did was give my stomach a nice, tingly sensation, and yes, smoother skin, because well, it was a lotion.

Between the staff I worked with and I, the amount of treatments we have tried for research and article purposes is...well, a lot. At the end of the day the best results I got were from the fitness programs I road tested and not the miracle fixes. Although they are good "toppers" to a real exercise and diet regimen, they are definitely not a replacement for it. As long as you know that, then go ahead and enjoy them, otherwise, be prepared for disappointment.

Change in diet, change in lifestyle and exercise--the only real way to lose weight and keep it off, plus be truly healthy. If you have a history of quitting on a diet halfway through, or simply don't know where to start, I suggest you contact Josephine So- the site looks a bit cheezy, but I have personally tried a program with her, as has a colleague of mine and a few other friends and she really works. May not be for everyone but it's worth a shot.

Remember healthy trumps skinny. Always.

Til next time folks,

Your friendly ex- beauty editor


  1. What about those RF treatments (I think that stands for radio frequency)? Ever tried those? Or is that the same as Marie France's UltraShape?

    No matter how much weight I lose and how much exercise I do, I still always have this yucky yucky back fat. It's so stubborn!! Been contemplating on RF treatments for that...

  2. My former colleague tried RF treatments and he said that it's basically good for lightening stretch marks and smoothing skin but it's not advisable if you are expecting substantial weight loss or results.I think a trainer will be able to help you with your problem areas. Or you could look into Mesotherapy for spot treatments such as that, but be prepared to maintain a healthy diet and try to work out or it will just come back!


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