Clients often tell me, “You name it, I’ve tried it.” They have spent significant amounts of time — and money — on the latest and greatest diets, plans and products in their attempts to lose weight.
They may be successful for a few weeks or even a few months, but always seem to regain the weight they lost, plus more. It breaks my heart to see vulnerable people, in essence, preyed upon by an industry worth billions of dollars.
Which is exactly how I felt a few weeks ago when I came across a product billed as “That Crazy Wrap Thing.” According to the website, the Ultimate Body ApplicatorTM — a.k.a. That Crazy Wrap Thing — by It Works!TM is a “contouring, cream-infused cloth wrap [that] helps to improve the tone and texture of your skin while reducing the look of cellulite.”
The website also throws in a few buzzwords like “botanically based formula” and “fast, lasting results,” and asks if customers are ready to love their body. It Works!TM uses network marketing, also known as multi-level marketing, to distribute its products through so-called “wrapaneurs,” which act as independent distributors.
The website of one such distributor (www.mycrazywrapthing.com) reports the product is “easy,” “affordable,” and “fun.”
Based on all of this, I have a few key points I want to make.
First of all, the best thing to wrap yourself in is your own warm embrace — love the body you have. Take each of your arms and wrap them around yourself. I feel better already!
Perhaps your body is capable of producing beautiful children, perhaps it is strong and helps you earn a living, or perhaps it houses your kind heart. Perhaps it’s young and athletic or perhaps it’s showing signs of wear.
Either way, love it for any reason. When you love yourself and your body, it’s amazing how caring for yourself in other ways, like nutrition or activity, seems to come a little easier.
Next, when it comes to buzzwords, think critically. For instance, “botanically based,” what does that mean exactly? Botanical simply means of or relating to plants. Poison ivy is also a plant, but that doesn’t mean you should wrap yourself in it. So in relation to this product, I'm not quite sure what buzzword is supposed to be telling us.
Then, there's the “fast, lasting results.” Any time I hear “fast, lasting results,” I consider that to be red flag. As a matter of fact, if you read the fine print on the It Works!TM website, you'll learn that “individual results can and will vary” and that the company's claims about what the wrap can do “have not been clinically proven or evaluated by the FDA or any regulatory or governmental agency.”
Finally, when it comes to being affordable and fun, well that's a matter of perspective. Unless you qualify for the “loyal customer price” of $76, the retail price is $127, which could also buy fresh foods, new sneakers, a day at the spa, some good books, or whatever way you choose to care for yourself.
Furthermore, I can think of countless things that would be a lot more fun than wrapping your body in a cream-infused cloth. Like not doing that, for example.
At the end of the day, I’m not debating whether this product does what it says or not. I’m simply encouraging you to be kind to yourself and your body, think critically and hold on to your hard-earned money.
As a registered dietitian, I encourage my clients to shift their focus from their weight to their health and wellness. Change is always difficult, but with the support of others, a positive attitude, and a flexible approach, we can take it on one small piece at a time.
A registered dietitian can help. Ask me how!
Ashley Hurley is a Registered Dietitian in Sudbury. Like her on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ashleyhurleyRD.