The battle of the bulge is more than a famous war campaign in WWII, it is also the ongoing fight against over eating, and weight gain. A battle that, according to the National Center for Health Statistics in January 2009, has left 34 percent of Americans obese, compared to 32.7 percent who are overweight and 6 percent that are “extremely” obese. We have more diet plans than healthcare plans in America, and as with both none of them seem to work for everyone. Exercise has always been the great stand-by for weight loss and with television shows such as “The Biggest Loser” and“Losing It with Jillian” coming to us in high quality HD it would seem that more people should be motivated to take control of their life and follow the examples shown them on the TV. Then again, it still comes down to will power and sadly with most Americans the flesh is capable, but the will is weak.

And so the battle continues, yo-yo dieting, inconsistent work out routines, fasting followed by bingeing followed by fasting again. Is it any wonder why we as a nation are viewed as having the most unhealthy life style of any modern nation? We do whatever we can to excess, except the things that we should do. We drive to excess when we could just as easily walk that 200 yards from one store in a shopping center to the one across the parking lot. We eat to excess because that all you can eat buffet is only 4.99, and we want to make sure we get out money’s worth, when instead we should actually learn up on portioning our meals as well as spacing them out, and not starve our selves most of the day and have that big fast food feast at the end of the work day. We also lounge to excess, we give up on any out doors plans we had in order to stay in and watch the pretty pictures on the big screen. When in reality, most daily activities that could have a huge impact on your health take no more than an hour to do. Is it convenient, generally not, but it is important.

Meanwhile, while all this debate over what is the proper way to live a healthy life style, and how much is too much exercise, eating, fast food, carbs, proteins, ect. The business world is out there coming up with flash in the pan ideas to try to get your money by praying on the hopes and insecurities of a worried and over weight populace. They throw out everything from magic pills that are supposed to burn off fat calories, to mystical never before seen training tools that will firm and build your muscle tone with the minimalist effort on your part, only 4 easy payments of 19.99 and not available in stores… well not for at least 8 months then you will find them all over the place at your local Wal-Mart, Walgreens, or CVS. It is rare that anything comes out that will actually help you and is not a temporary fix.

Which brings us to todays new brand of weight loss magic. Is it real, does it work? Well, as it says in the bottom of the article, the only way to know is for you to try it and decide.  The Sprinkles Diet. We all know the adage “you are what you eat” but are we now looking at “you are what you smell?” I can really believe some the reasoning behind this article. Smell is one of the most powerful and often underrated sense that we posses. Smell triggers memory stronger than sight, and it really does cause stronger cravings as well as turns us off our hunger faster than visual stimuli. I know if I walk past a restaurant and the favorable smell of some delicious meal comes wafting my way, I am quickly put in the mood for that meal and grow very hungry for it, and the longer I wait, the hungrier I get and the more and more I visualize I am going to want to eat. At the same time, take me in the same situation, walking down the street, I smell the wonderful smell outside the restaurant, I’m craving, I’m hungry, and then as I keep walking I pass by the alley  and the most horrid stench of three-week old rotten garbage hits me like a punch to the hypothalamus. My cravings are killed and I’m hoofing it to get away from the stench. So yes, I can really see the reasoning behind the science of this product. The problem is…. where is the science?

After reading this I thought is very interesting idea, but as I looked it over again I could not see exactly where it describes what the heck those little crystals are doing. “Sensa acts imperceptibly to speed up the natural satiety process, which prevents overeating,” Ok… but how? This article throws out nice sounding words and phrases  like successful studies, and double-blind, placebo-controlled study. These make us feel the product is very official and incredibly proven, but those very same terms can be found on just about any diet pill on the market, and we know how successful all of those must be. I still say the scientific information in this products pitch is lacking. The most scientific that the articles goes is talking about the hypothalamus and it’s control over your hunger. That is not the science of this product, that is a biology lesson. What the heck are these little crystals made of? They claim Sensa is made from absolutely no drugs but that is as far as they go with that route of information. The truth is they don’t give us one ounce of useful information that does not revolve around their sales pitch, or their “impressive” study reports. They even state that with the double-blind placebo controlled study they found that the “results very similar to Hirsch’s, with an average weight loss of more than 27 pounds.” They then quickly follow that up with the whole, to know for sure if it works, you need to try it. So in essence they did not tell us how much of that average of weight loss came from the control placebo group, and how much came from the folks on the donut sprinkles. That’s not the kind of vagueness I like to see in my information.

Now, I’m not saying this stuff does not work, who knows, I mean I have not tried it myself to see, as they so strongly encourage,  but I do know that the brain is a very powerful and often unexpected organ and that it is capable of more than we sometimes give it credit for. That is why placebos work in the first place, we believe something so strongly that our brain makes it so. This is why when dealing with something in the brain that is supposed to be, according to this product, as responsible for our over eating as the hypothalamus is proposed to be; I feel hesitant about anything that does not explain it self fully and inform the buyer just why it is the product and not the brain on its own that is responsible for this incredible weight loss.

Bottom line, people with weight issues want to believe in and want to grasp so strongly to a quick and easy fix to their problems that they see these kind of products as the miracles they have been waiting for and they buy into it with out a second thought or glance, not really wanting to know the science or the full disclosure of the findings around these products, because if they know that they might learn that the promoted results are skewed, or that the successful results were lost mere months after the subjects stopped using the product or diet, sometimes gaining more weight than they initially had. The truth is, there are only a few truly successful weight loss plans, and not one of them is a quick fix. Most require discipline, self-control, and above all an ability to mentally drop the habits that brought them to the unhealthy place they are in now. Until they come out with a miracle pill that does all that, I’m going to take the longer road towards my health goals. It may be longer, but I know that in the end I will enjoy the results all the more and for a long time to come, and that’s how I see it.

© David Carl Dobbs and How Dobbs Sees it, 2010. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to David Carl Dobbs and How Dobbs Sees it with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.