On Your Side: Get Skinny, Not Scammed

By: Jeff Anderson Email
By: Jeff Anderson Email

News 12 at 6, January 8, 2008

AUGUSTA -- Getting in shape is one of the most popular New Year's resolutions. Everyone is looking for a get skinny-quick product. But the Better Business Bureau says if you're not careful, you won't be getting skinny, you'll just be getting scammed.

Julia Petrides is what you might call a gym rat. "I joined the Y about 6 years ago," she said.

But she wasn't always that way, it wasn't too long ago that Julia looked a bit different.

"I was 55, fat, size 12, out of shape. I looked at myself and said I don't want to look like that," Julia said.

So, Julia decided to make a change in her lifestyle and make a move towards being healthier by joining the YMCA. Her choice didn't include any quick fix programs. "I know if anything seems to good to be true, it really is," she said.

Unfortunately, the Better Business Bureau says not everyone makes smart decisions like Julia when it comes to losing weight.

The organization receives hundreds of complaints against companies that make promises of quick weight-loss. Unfortunately, they rarely deliver.

There's the Wu Yi Source Weight-Loss Tea. The company advertises by drinking the tea, you'll lose weight. The BBB says it has seen many complaints, which say the company doesn't honor its refund policy.

Then, there is Changes International, which promises to help you lose weight and quit smoking by hypnosis. The BBB says its complainants say the product doesn't work and the company doesn't honor its refund policy.

Weight-loss pills and even fat-dissolving injections are also on list.

YMCA workers say it all boils down to this: there aren't any quick fixes. Hard work is the only solution.

"The goal is to get the heart rate up. So, any activity that encourages you to live a better lifestyle is gonna' be more beneficial," said Abby Railsback of the YMCA.

And Julia Petrides is living proof of that. "I feel great; gone from a size 12 to a size 2," she said.

You can also try joining an established gym like the YMCA or maybe even just work out at home.

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