Weight Loss Pills, Potions and Lies!

by Steven Carney on January 22, 2013

Americans, you’re being lied to every day! We are drowning in a sea of snake-oil salespeople who offer pills, potions and lies for weight loss. Most don’t offer real, permanent solutions for your weight challenges. But they are happy to take your money!

If you have tried to lose weight and didn’t succeed, I know you’re frustrated! I’ve been through it myself. You’ve probably tried various diets or the latest weight loss fads your friends mentioned. And I understand you might be so fed up, you’re willing to try anything, including unproven pills or potions to solve your weight issues. Your pain and confusion drives you to seek a quick fix.

But ask yourself: Do you really suffer from a deficiency of weight loss pills or potions?

There are better ways to lose weight and manage your health issues, ones I can teach you in a few phone calls. But first, I’d like to talk about the junk you’re finding online so you know how it’s done!

Many sites or programs claim to have “clinical research” or “clinical trials” that prove the effectiveness of their weight loss formulas, potions or pills. In truth, these claims are often exaggerated or worse, downright fabrications!

Here are 3 critical points about research you need to know:

1. Basic research, such as lab or in vitro studies don’t often work in human subjects. Although lab studies are fine for basic cellular testing and interactions, it’s not the same as going through human digestion and metabolism. We are complex beings with unique lifestyles, cultural practices and variables, such as age, gender, diet, activity, health status, builds, beliefs, etc. Many lab studies don’t translate to humans, so don’t be swayed!

2. Small animal studies are also touted as “clinical research or clinical proof.” Again, only a small percentage of treatments that work in mice, rats or other mammals work in humans, for the same reasons I listed above, i.e., we are more complex in many ways. So again, these studies are not proof that a pill or potion will work for you!

3. Pilot studies, even randomized, double-blind versions are often touted as clinical proof but they aren’t because they only use small numbers of subjects (around 10-50). They don’t prove efficacy in a broad range of subjects. Pilot studies are often the first tests done in humans to see if something might work. Consider this: no drug could ever be approved based on a few pilot studies with 20 or 30 subjects! They are neither credible nor are they considered proof!

Another concern with pilot studies is that they are often short in duration, such as a few days or weeks. So again, they do not constitute proof of efficacy or effectiveness over longer periods, say months to years. We often develop a tolerance to things which act like drugs in our bodies. Over time, they work less and less effectively. You end up taking more. More hassle for you and more money for the pill peddlers!

For research studies to be really credible, they should include at least 100 subjects that represent a broad cross-section of targeted people, and the results need to show consistent effectiveness and safety over a long period, such as 6-12 months. Then that study needs to be replicated and verified again, perhaps several times, before any weight loss improvement is accepted to work.

BTW, those larger, longer clinical studies can cost millions, and it’s rare that weight loss companies commit the time and money to prove their effectiveness in proper studies. I don’t know of a single weight-loss pill that has reached this level of credible research!

So if you see companies using these types of weak research to sell weight loss pills or potions, even as they brag about their clinical research, feel free to contact the FDA and report the site to them! The main number is: 1-888-463-6332 (1-888-INFO-FDA).

Calorie restriction: also doomed to fail

I know many overweight people are frustrated and willing to try anything, including crash diets and calorie restriction, with or without fake hormones like HCG (unless you get a prescription from a doctor, the female pregnancy hormone HCG is not allowed in supplements)!

Any time you go on crash diets or significant calorie restriction (cutting around 500 calories a day), you’ll often lose:

  • Important macro and micro nutrients (proteins, fats, vitamins, minerals, etc.)
  • Muscle, as your body tries to replace protein
  • Minerals from bone, making them less dense
  • Stress to your entire body, including your brain and organs
  • Stress on your immune system
  • Loss of muscle means that you will gain more weight back when you stop the diet

The bottom line is that sudden weight loss, like many of the crash diet and weight loss programs online, will make your health worse, not better (and won’t really solve your weight challenges either)!

A pill-pushing site example:

I’ve seen doctors serving as front men for weight loss pills, ones with little credible research to support their bold claims and hype. One example is a site that has an MD who narrates a separate video on a landing page (separated and unlinked from the main site because it probably violates FDA and FTC supplement guidelines). It’s touching, showing multiple pictures of the doctor and his family (do you suppose his family pictures are there to play on your emotions or to add scientific support?). The video includes cleaver illustrations and appeals to your frustrations, along with some exaggerated claims about weight loss, depression, anxiety and hormones.

This MD also appears to write a whole series of health and weight loss articles for the main site (his signature is on them). But in fact, he didn’t write those articles. The articles were written by their marketing guy! Plus, that doc is apparently no longer practicing (you would never know that from the site)!

Do you think they want you to know these things? Of course not!

Deception is a critical part of these sales approaches, including the use of the “your captured” sales video that you can’t pause or stop. There’s a reason they use that tactic: they want the most desperate people they can grab and manipulate. My advice is to run from those manipulative-type videos or sales presentations. Just click on the X and close the page!

If this site offered such an effective weight-loss supplement, supported by credible research, shouldn’t you be allowed to pause their 30-minute video for a phone call or bathroom break?

This video often brags about having “clinical research” for their pills but I checked and the research is a mix of lab, small animal and pilot studies! If you read my above info (in numbers 1-3), you know most of that research is exaggerated; it’s not credible proof that their supplements work! They don’t have enough research to show that their pills are safe, effective and healthy for a broad range of people over a long period. It’s like taking crumbs and cardboard, molding them into a cake (with lots of frosting), and taking a picture of the “lovely” cake! It’s not real!

Again, we don’t suffer from a deficiency of weight-loss pills. The concept is bogus!

The capture video and site in question gives you the impression of legitimacy by using the doctor as the front man, and getting you to believe their myths! When people believe that an unproven pill works it’s often the placebo effect, which occurs in 20 to 30% of people testing drugs. The benefits are literally in your mind! You don’t need their expensive pills to believe in yourself or your ability to lose weight and feel great!

And consider this: if you follow that site’s plan, you’ll be taking 3 pills a day (1 per meal), which puts you in a state of constant, daily pill dependency! How annoying is that?

Overweight people don’t suffer from a lack of weight-loss pills! The pills, potions and lies are about separating you from your money!

The simple truth is that weight-loss pills won’t ever fix your weight problem (in the same way most drugs treat symptoms but don’t ever cure). This site charges more than $65.00 for a 1 month supply of their weight loss pills! That’s a ridiculous amount to pay for something that really won’t fix your problem, and something you can do for yourself with the right knowledge and support!

In fact, I can help you take back control of your weight, health and life at the same time (because they are all related)! And you won’t need any weight loss gimmicks! I can gently guide you so you will lose weight naturally, without dieting, calorie restriction, pills or potions. You’ll spend less money, and have life-long results from my expert weight-loss coaching and help!

Here’s another key idea to ponder: is weight gain the problem or is it a symptom of metabolic imbalance? If you don’t know the answer, gaining weight is more of a symptom. It’s your body telling you that your health and lifestyle are out of sync!

What you need is a tune up to get your engine running smoother! You need inspiration! You might also need some emotional support if you are under stress. No pill or potion will give you that!

In closing, don’t be taken in by a quick fix or the promise of a pill solution because you’ll pay the price later on. You don’t need to be dependent on pills, potions or lies to lose weight! There are better alternatives, one’s which can leave you feeling great, looking great and living longer. I can give you those alternatives!

Feel free to follow me on twitter, FB or ask a question any time!

Helpful links:
















I ran across this new study on 5/17/13 which indicates that dieting (calorie restriction) increases cravings for unhealthy foods:


I saw this info on 6/18/13 and I decided to add:


On 6/23/13 I ran across this info on Medifast and TSFL (Take Shape for Life) the MLM company. Their sales reps (often called “health coaches” in their program) get paid by selling the Medifast line, an apparent conflict of interest because an independent health coach should not be tied to a single product line or company (I have no such ties). The degree of calorie restriction in their main plan (around 800-1,000 calories/day) cuts about 50% of an average adult’s needs and I don’t recommend the approach for long-term weight loss and health (see my post above and other posts for why). My coaching is about educating/supporting you in making small, effective lifestyle changes you so you make gentle, less-stressful improvements. I’m not here to make you dependent on meals, shakes or other weight loss products. The links below will give you a broader perspective on TSFL and Medifast:


This set of complaints gives another perspective on TSFL/Medifast products and their operations:


Here is another overview showing problems with Medifast and TSFL:


Here is an FTC “Cease and Desist” order from September of 2012, showing another round of violations for Medifast/Jason and TSFL marketing regarding their weight loss programs:



A decent overview of bogus weight loss products (some mentioned in my post):


Great info on why most diet pills and potions are scrutinized by the FTC:


A 2014 story about the FTC fining a green bean coffee extract company 3.5 million for research fraud (this ingredient is used in several weight loss pills I covered above):



© 2013 by Steve Carney/End Sickness Now


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