You have all seen the advertisement: Lose 6-20 inches from your body in just one hour! Have you ever wondered how that is possible? We will tell you all about that. Body Wrap treatments, also called ‘miracle bandages’ are among the popular techniques that many ‘slimming’ centers & spas use. This gives you temporary weight loss & can have side effects. And the weight comes back on fast!

In the Body Wrap treatment, absorptive substances likeclay, algae and others are applied on your body with bandages, plastic wrap or meshed clothes to tightly wrap your body. This leads to quick weight loss through vasodilation (expansion of blood vessels) which increases water removal.

60-75% of your body is composed of water. So, if you weight 60 kg, upto 45 kg of your body is water. Now, if some of the water got temporarily removed, then your weight and size would go down. We say temporary, because your body has a certain requirement for water levels- water is the basis for most bodily functions, so with lowered water levels it does not function well. If you remove the water through any method, it will try to gain the water back- through the liquids that you drink, the food that you eat, etc. So, soon your water levels, the weight and the size returns.

Body wraps work on two principles: absorption and compacting. Once the pores of skin are opened, the fluids are "extracted" or "absorbed" by the applied substance. Squeezing is simply compacting the tissues together after the "interstitial fluid" has been extracted. The body bandages and wraps compact together the empty space between two cells.

Your body perspires when you get a body wrap. The absorptive clay will absorb a certain amount of water. So body wraps just lead to water loss (temporary), and no fat loss. How can clay, aleo vera and other applied substance, help you burn more calories, or reduce fat from your body?  Nowhere in the treatment is your metabolism altered or any calories burnt. In fact, before the session you are always asked to drink lot of water, you can guess why? Yes, it’s a simple principle- More the water in your body, more of it is eliminated & more is the 'inch loss'.

Now, about the “6-20 inches promise”- the truth is that circumference measurements are taken from all over the body that might add up to a total of 15 inches in circumference loss. It’s not that you lose 5-10 inches from one desired part.

In fact studies have shown that lowered water levels in your body lead to slower metabolism. So, essentially after a body wrap, your metabolic rate could slow down. As a result, you burn fewer calories. So, if you continue your normal lifestyle, with the same amount of food intake, you could possibly gain weight, without changing anything!

Besides lowered metabolic rate from body wraps, skin allergies are another complication that you need to know of. Due to the water loss, your skin can be left very dry- can cause dermal reaction. Besides the possibility of the chemicals & ingredients (even in herbal body wraps) used in the body wraps that can react with your skin.

So, do you really think quick fix weight loss solutions, like body wrap treatments are worth it?

If you need to lose weight, get on a healthy weight loss plan, with a balanced diet and an effective exercise routine.