One of the latest crazes in the race to look good this minute is the It Works! contouring body wraps. They say they will tone, tighten, and firm any part of your body up in just 45 minutes and of course they have the pictures to prove it. They also claim that “you will look better, feel better, strengthen your immune system and feel overall rejuvenated.”(1) When really examining the before and after photos, I found that it took these people several months to get the results and I actually never found out if the results last if you stop using the product. Our society is so caught up in the quick fix, instant gratification of looking great now, we are suckers throwing our money away on things that make huge promises and don’t deliver the real long lasting results.
4 wraps will cost you about $100 and you have to use them every three days to get maximum results. If you use them the way they recommend it can cost you about $300 per month for just the wraps not including all the other products they sell, which on some level is cheap in comparison to what some women will pay to look the way society and our culture has trained us. However the cost of these is more than just the money out of your pocket. It Works! Body Wraps are a Band-aid to your health and self-confidence.
I confess, I have tried these wraps in the past with a friend and honestly neither one of us got the results they promised. When I tried them I was training for my first bikini competition and thought “hey great!! These will give me an extra boost for toning up.” I was already about 6 weeks out from my competition and had eliminated pretty much all the toxins in my body using real food and exercise, plus drinking lots of water. I was disappointed and frustrated that I had spent money on something that didn’t deliver on the promise. You might wonder why it didn’t work for me yet they have pictures of amazing transformations and maybe you have even seen them work for you. Well honestly, I had already cleansed my body of the toxins naturally with real food from the inside out so I had nothing extra to get rid of. I am not saying that I didn’t have room for improvement with my health, but I wasn’t going to get what I needed from a quick fix. My friend who tried them was not training for a bikini competition and she just ate normal and did the wraps and saw no improvement or change either.
I believe that It Works is a Band-Aid to real health. They don’t actually improve your health because they are not working at the source of your health problems. They don’t help you lose body fat or decrease inflammation or balance your blood sugar. They don’t help decrease your blood pressure or help you improve your good cholesterol. They certainly do not decrease your triglycerides or help you build lean muscle mass and they don’t help you balance your hormones. All of the above are real indicators of your health status. I am not sure they really even improve your immune functioning.
Improving your health doesn’t come from a body wrap or a pill, it comes from adopting a lifestyle of making healthy choices to eat “real food” you know the stuff that you can grow and harvest or hunt yourself. If comes from being able to be active and from building lean muscle mass. Real health starts from what you decide to put in your mouth and how you live your life everyday.
The band-aid effect doesn’t stop at health, It Works is a band-aid to improving your self-confidence as well, because it capitalizes on the media marketing of look great, feel great without the need to make any changes just use these wraps. In my opinion, our self-confidence should never be tried to how beautiful we look. It is something that we need to feel all the time. Confidence is about believing in yourself and your ability to do things. If we tie it to something subjective, like how we look we are doomed to go through yo-yo self pity and depression because “we aren’t good enough.” I believe our self confidence and self worth should be based on things that have nothing to do with how we look in a pair of jean, because honestly if you feel confident, you will feel beautiful no matter what size you are, and you can rock any pair of jeans you want.
So if It Works is a band-aid to real health and self confidence, then what do you do? Well here are seven things that I believe will help you today feel better about yourself and might even help improve your health:
1) Drink 3-4 liters of water per day. Water will help hydrate you and is great for removing toxins from your body. Just by increasing your water intake, you will feel better and your body will start working better because it depends on proper hydration to function effectively.
2) Eat lots of green leafy and fibrous veggies. Veggies have so many vitamins, nutrients and antioxidants it is crazy. We are designed to digest them most effectively in their whole form. So aim for 7-10 servings or more of veggies per day.
3) Make sure you are getting your essential fatty acids from good quality fats like coconut, avocado, and nuts. Your brain works best when you are getting essential fatty acids, this is something your body can’t make unlike glucose or carbohydrates which your body can make if necessary. Essential means just that – if you don’t get them you will feel sluggish and could eventually have major health problems.
4) Eat good quality protein at every meal (preferably organic, grassfed or pasture raised). Protein is an essential (we can’t produce it in our body) and it is also necessary for your body to function correctly. Protein also helps you build and maintain lean muscle mass. It keeps your strong and takes longer to digest so you stay fuller longer. It also gives you energy.
5) Get your sleep, often we minimize the importance of sleep in our lives however it is crucial for not only a healthy functioning body but also a healthy functioning mind. You feel better when you get a good night of sleep. You are less irritable and enjoy a higher quality of life, plus it can help you live longer. Sleep is essential because this is when the body gets to work on repairing itself.
6) Start doing things you love. So often we get caught up in doing the things we “need or should” do instead of doing things we love. We feel better about ourselves, when we spend time doing things we are good at and things we like. So if you love knitting, find time to knit, love to read, find time to read, love to paint, then find time to paint. Want to try something new you think you will like, then do it. The more you do these things the more confident you will feel. Remember self doubt and confidence cannot occupy the same space in your head at the same time so #chooseconfidence.
7) Watch what comes out of your mouth. So often we use negative self-talk when we talk to ourselves. We are critical and judgmental and down right mean to ourselves. So when you are talking to yourself, ask “would I say this to my best friend, my young child, or my grandparent?” If not then you probably shouldn’t being saying it to yourself.
In summary, don’t fall for the quick fix solutions because those are just snake oils being repackaged. Work on making lifestyle changes that you can sustain. Improve your health by changing what you put in your mouth. Improve your self-confidence by doing stuff you love and watching what comes out of your mouth. You don’t have to spend hundreds or even thousands to get healthy or more confident you just have to be willing to start with the basics: real food & real kindness.
Let me know if I can help support you. Amanda ox