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When Someone is Watching

I am always looking for eyewitnesses in our cases. Here’s a different take on an eyewitness.

Researchers tell us a way to stop eating junk food. Researchers at Cornell University’s Food and Brand Lab scientifically tell us that eating in front of a mirror can effect your taste for junk food. (Health.com)

According to their study of 185 graduate students, watching yourself eat junk food in front of a mirror triggers discomfort. It reminds you of your eating choices.

Their conclusion? If you are looking for a way to lose weight and eat healthier, pick up a new mirror for your dining room or kitchen. It could help you watch what you eat…literally!

And for our pic o’ day, here’s something to remind us about smiling!

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The Bebelplatz Burning Reminder

The Bebelplatz (from Wiki) is a public square that is centrally located in Berlin, Germany. The square is named after August Bebel, who is credited as the founder of Germany’s  Social Democratic Party.

The Bebelplatz is known as the infamous site where, on May 10, 1933, over 20,000 books by Jewish authors were destroyed . On that date, Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels was invited by the German Student Union to give a speech before the burning. He stood to give an inflammatory speech as a precursor of events to come, and then the SS and Hitler Youth groups set fire to the books, which included many well-known works by such writers as Karl Marx and Albert Einstein.

Today in the square, there is a memorial set up as a reminder to the destruction of those books. It commemorates the great loss of those books with a glass plate set in the cobble stones. As evidenced by this photo, the memorial shows a view of empty bookcases that is large enough to hold 20,000 books.memorial

There is a German engraved plaque next to the glass plate. Translated in English it reads, “That was only a prelude; where they burn books, they will in the end also burn people“.

Several years ago one of my New Year’s resolutions was to lose weight. I joined a nearby Weight Watchers. Not surprisingly, several other people had the same resolution.

During the subsequent weeks, we would all show up for the weekly meetings. First, we would go behind a curtain and weigh-in. Then, we would have a brief motivational lecture to equip us with techniques for weight loss. Reminders to eat pickles or Fat Free Cool-Whip if we needed to fight cravings. (Typing that made me hungry.)

One lady faithfully attended each of the weekly meetings. Her weight loss was dramatic. The reason that I remember her so well is that she would always come into the meeting with the same dress over her other clothes. Then she would take that outer layer dress off, after her weigh-in.

That dress was what she wore to the very first Weight Watchers’ meeting. Through the weeks, it became very apparent that she had lost a considerable amount. In fact, by the end, that sagging dress  looked comical on her.

The two stories are not equal in the gravity of the event. But, they both used reminders to move forward in a positive direction.

If you have made resolutions for 2015, there will be great temptation to think “Oh well”. I have that same little voice in my head. So,  I have tried to set up some motivating reminders for some of my resolutions.

Now to my personal unintentional reminder. I was reviewing past TV spots that were run in years past, for the law firm. I pulled up some ads that were cut in 2011. Who was that fat guy in a little coat? It was me. What was I thinking? It looks like pork chops hanging from my neck.

Every year, I put some resolution emphasis on exercise and weight loss. My reminder for this year is to just pop in a 2011  JB Firm spot… and watch it. Boom.

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No Sprinkling Fat Away

The New York Times started out with the collection of various claims. “Get a gym body without going to the gym.” All you have to do is sprinkle this powder.  “Significantly slim your thighs and buttocks” by just rubbing some almond-scented cream. You can lose two pounds per day by “just putting two drops under your tongue”.

Too good to be true. When we hear certain weight loss claims, we know instinctively that it can’t be true… but we want them to be true. Then, we find out the truth.

The NY Times and the Washington Post both report that the Federal Trade Commission has charged four companies with deceptively marketing weight-loss products. The four companies (Sensa Products, L’Occitane, HCG Diet and LeanSpa)  will collectively pay a $34 million dollar refund to consumers for their claims.

Of that amount, Sensa Products is paying $26 Million, despite the fact that they racked up an estimated $364 Million in sales with their “Sprinkle, eat and lose weight” campaign. According to the FTC, their advertising claims have no basis. Of course, just sprinkling to lose weight almost sounds comical. But we want it to be true!

This is the time of year when we are tackling weight loss resolutions. It sure would be much easier to be able to eat as much as we want and still lose weight.

Unfortunately, this is a reminder that special patches, slimming shoes and belts that move on their own while you watch TV are still no replacement for what we really know. It’s what goes in our mouth and how many calories we burn when we exercise. Although, I am still open to the possibility of some kind of mashed potatoe diet. I will not give up on that dream.

For the DID YOU KNOW, I found a unique weather story. On June 10, 1958, a tornado was spinning through Kansas. The twister pulled a woman out of her house and carried her approximately 6o feet, where she landed unharmed next to a phonograph record that was sitting on the ground. The title of the record… “Stormy Weather”.

And for pic o’ day, this was sent to me as an encouragement for exercise with tongue in cheek:

grandma exerciser

 

Akavar Class Action and Others

     It sounds like a great idea to be able to “Eat all you want and still lose weight”. Let’s put on our buffet pants right now. Unfortunately, you know the saying of “there’s no free lunch” . Now, we should also start saying that there is ” no all you can eat and don’t get fat lunch”. 

     A nationwide notice is being sent out, authorized by the United States District Court of Utah, relating to a class action lawsuit  that is being brought against the manufacturers of a weight loss supplement that is called Akavar 20/50.(Akavar) The lawsuit is called Miller v Basic Research LLC, et al. (Case No. 2:07-CV-871)

     In their ads for the supplement, the manufacturer made claims that the product had undergone “scientific evaluation” by a “team of doctors”.  The lawsuit alleges that there were no clinical trials; no scientific evidence that supported the claims of being able to eat anything you want and not gain weight; and that the advertisements were just making fraudulent claims.

          In 2009, Hydroxycut was recalled, because people claimed to have suffered severe liver damage injuries. I see their commercials again under the title of “Hydroxycut Advanced”. Now, they are pitching energy and weight loss in the same supplement. Notice, they hit the airwaves hard, right before swimsuit season. I wonder what change they made in the ingredients, that make it “Advanced”.

     Synerate weight loss was recalled, after more than 60 adverse events were reported. Many were deaths relating to heart attacks and strokes.

     The FDA just sent out a warning about an over the counter weight loss supplement called Fruta Planta. It is barred from the US and the warning went as far as to say that you should make sure that it gets thrown away, in a sealed container, so children and animals cannot  get to it.  

     It’s sad that people of bad character concoct some pill; set up a PO Box; and just start running TV ads that tout false claims. Meanwhile, people think that the ads are truthful and the pictures of the actors in their bathing suits, must be real. 

     The battle of the bulge lets these kinds of characters prey on the unsuspecting. History records that  Hitler believed that you should  “make the lie big; make it simple; keep saying it and eventually they will believe it”.

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