Thursday, October 4, 2007

Legal Con Man Scam?--Learn How Easy You Can Lose Weight

What's over when the fat lady sings?
The aggressive marketer thinks he knows. So does the con man.

Apparently it is interpreted by the consumer as a shrinkage of the waistline, rather than shrinkage of his / her wallet. If so, the national obesity fight is providing myriad opportunities for legal scams by con men.

Resulting from the widespread appeal of keeping one's stomach from looking like a deflated clown balloon, it is amazing to what lengths some weight-loss promoters--both the legitimate marketer and the con man--will go to achieve such desired results. From advertisements surveyed from the pages of national magazines--and particularly the supermarket tabloids--comes a compendium of really unconventional (read, downright weird) ways to win the obesity battle: "Lose weight the quick, easy, painless way," they cajole. Ready to lose? (Which way do you mean that? you ask.) Ponder these methods for physical weight reduction:

> Your appetite suppressed by way of a lip balm? Whenever you get hungry--for a meal or snack--you merely apply this product to your lips, and, voila, appetite curbed. (In counterpoint you could simply forget the whole thing. Just rationalize. Say to yourself, "I have flabby thighs, but fortunately my stomach covers them.")

> The Hula Hoop is back, suggested as an excellent means for extracting globs of spare-tire flesh from your gut and hips. (Con man emergence again?) This is an approach that might not be too far off base, if you think your vascular system could support the rigors of such vigorous mid-section undulations. If you plan on doing this for any length of time it's probably best to first check with your doctor for an O.K.

> Have at your digestive system with determination by wearing Slim Slippers. Through use of magnets and reflexology technology, to manipulate your nervous system, these are purported to influence your metabolism to the point where your hunger will decrease. Interested? If so, first respect Duckcrime's Axiom: If you view your problem closely enough you will recognize yourself as part of the problem. Some introspection needed?

> Here's your chance to be slim, or, at least, look slimmer. Wear caffeine tights. Body heat stimulates caffeine in the tights to leak through your pores--to speed up your metabolism, thereby burning fat, it is claimed. Seems like another experiment of equal merit would be to get falling-down drunk to see if you can fall off the floor.

> Apple Cider Vinegar, Lecithin, Kelp, Grapefruit Diet. Here's one that's been around for ages. Never went away. Interesting natural ingredients, but, never any impressive double-blind studies to prove claims. Piping hot, this is, nonetheless, a good sedative. You should sleep like a gnome on a concrete slab beneath a bridge.

> Apply a sunscreen loaded with caffeine. ??? Suppose this beats bathing with flea and tick soap.

> Control your hunger with earrings, custom-fitted to your ears so as to access acupressure points which will curb your appetite. Divine intervention might work, too.

> Retina / eyeglasses relationship to weight control? Yes, according to this sales pitch, the color lenses supposedly project a specific image onto your eyeballs which will reduce your desire to consume food. Rose-colored glasses? So, if it doesn't work on your appetite, you'll still gain a healthier outlook on life as a residual benefit?

> You're familiar with the smoking patch, loaded with nicotine, to enable you to throw away the crutch of cigarettes? Now comes a weight reduction patch to enable you to discard the gluttony crutch. Place anywhere on your body, lean back, relax, and lose weight. Words will not flow to our keyboard to even comment on this one.

Real head-scratchers, all. You could lose weight quickly, too, by eating raw pork and rancid tuna. If you choose this easily accessed method, right out of your own kitchen, you would be strongly advised to ignore the con man and first consult your physician.


wenfri said...

Wow my Man you had howling with laughter all the way through that article.

It is a sad but true fact that most of (ok can't say most) are over weight.

Myself included am slightly over Now where did I put that darn hula hoop
time to visit the grand kids and shakin that booty LOL


Tony said...

Hi Jack,
Yes this was so funny, it did bring to mind though an old friend who was seriously overweight but could not stay away from food, he loved his food. A very large man and a really nice guy, owned his own haulage business so wasn't short of a penny.
He decided to go to the extreme length of having his jaws wired shut in the hope it would curb his appetite.Went to numerous meetings with his doctor, eventually on the day booked into the hospital, they put him to sleep to wire his jaws, I believe this was his request although not sure. This, at the excessive cost of a little over 800 pounds (yes UK sterling)which is around $1600 and upon waking had a massive panic attack and the doctors had to immediately cut the wire. It took him weeks to get over his ordeal and the only thing that changed was his bank balance.
My thoughts: If you feel healthy and good about yourself that's great,don't change the way you look because of the way others look at you. Which in most cases is why people want to lose weight in the first place.
Great blog Jack, i'll be back.

Keli said...

Very funny! What's most amazing to me is the number of people who actually fall for these, to put it kindly, unorthodox, lose weight quick schemes. I guess eating less and exercising more is out of the question.

Jack Payne said...

Yes, all you guys seem to "get it."

I write extensively on con men and their antics, as you can see by scrolling through this thread, and this one has to rank amongst the wildest I've ever seen.

kab625 said...

I just loved the rancid tuna and raw pork idea. But, now that you mention it we just might find it being marketed somewhere.


Anonymous said...

I saw a forum on TV the other day, it said that 35% of kids are going to be diabetic and that this generation will be the first in history to not outlive their parents..... Janice

Anonymous said...

Application of the overweight reasons and excuses do actually mirror the ways a con man works. Neat idea there, Jack. Kaye

Mr. Grudge said...

I've been tempted by many of these scams over the years to lose weight without really trying. In the end, I lost weight the old fashioned way...with diet and excercise. Thanks for all of the helpful advice to help us avoid getting ripped off.

Wakela Runen said...

Let's not forget the "diet books" that are being sold by the thousands. I was watching late night TV and stumbled upon an infomercial by Kevin Trudeau for a "quick, cheap and easy" weight loss solution. You only had to buy his book...

Well, a quick search on the internet turned up that it was a major scam in the fact that it wasn't quick ,cheap, or easy. It required visits to special practitioners to get injections and supplements and colonics and all sorts of things. There was a strange diet included that from what I read was downright impossible to follow.

Jack Payne said...

Trudeau's first book, in Amazon's Top Ten 3 years ago, was panned almost universally. Several hundred book reviewers ran it over the coals with jeers, ridicule, and downright sarcasm in the book review columns. Yet, the book kept selling, and selling, and selling. It remained a Best Seller for a long time.

Sure makes you wonder what kind of masochism goes on in the minds of today's book readers.

Wakela Runen said...

I am not so sure if its masochism or grasping for hope.

I know that many in todays society are looking for quick fixes, but there are still many more that are looking for any type of fix.

Especially if you look towards his first book. It wasn't targeted at weight loss, it was more towards health in general.

With the state of the health insurance in the United States, more and more people are turning to alternative sources for help. Even with insurance, many people go undiagnosed for years. So they turn to these types of books for help. They just want to know what is wrong with them and how to help it.

A perfect example would be the current scam going around that is targeting thyroid patients which I blogged about on October 22. Many of us thyroid sufferers are left out in the cold when it comes to medical care. It took me 10 years before I got a doctor to take me seriously. In the meantime, my health took a serious decline.

In these types of cases, patients have to take their health into their own hands. Only when doctors take their patients seriously and everyone has health insurance will these scam artists who attack people with illnesses be put out of business.

Will said...

This article is too funny. But it is a sad, serious situation in reality.

Jack - Thanks for your comment on my article.

I have actually written a few articles on the subject of weight loss and maintaining a healthy weight. I just implemented keyword tagging with the most recent version of WordPress, so now there should be links to related articles on the post. Sorry they were not there when you visited.

Understanding weight loss and maintaining a healthy weight is actually quite easy. It is actually doing what we all know needs to be done that is hard, and for some, close to impossible.


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