Websites and magazine articles that promote weight loss products will often include testimonials from users about their weight loss success from the product. These testimonials are there to re-affirm the claims of the manufacturer about their product. Unfortunately, these testimonials should not be taken at face value. Below are 10 rules to follow when reading weight loss testimonials.
- No exercise – If the testimonial says that they lost the weight without any exercise at all, you are looking at a weight loss that is temporary at best. Permanent weight loss must always include some form of physical activity in order to be maintained.
- Eat whatever you want – If the testimony says they could eat whatever they want and still lose weight, something does not compute. Food has calories, calories will add weight, unless they are burned off with physical exertion. There is something being left out of this story.
- Easy – An easy weight loss is a temporary weight loss. The first 5 or 10 pounds of weight loss can often be ‘easy’. It is continuing that weight loss and maintaining the loss that take additional discipline and a lifestyle change.
- Timeframe – Does the testimonial say how long it took to lose the weight, and how long they’ve maintained their new weight level? You will seldom find testimonials that will tell you that second timeframe. A good weight loss program will help you maintain that loss after your goal is achieved.
- Verifiable – Is there any way to verify that the testimonies are real? Technology today allows the printing of text and photos with little effort. It can be near impossible to verify if the testimonies truly came from real people or not.
- Variety – Is there any variance between the ‘success’ stories? Everyone responds to weight loss programs differently. True testimonials should show that, by having a wide range of varied results from the different participants.
- Photos Don’t tell the story – Many products use before and after photos as their part of their ‘testimonials’. With the use of photo-enhancing software, it can be very difficult to tell if the photos are real or not. Even if the photos have not been changed, photos can still be deceiving as to the real difference in how a person looks from one photo to the next.
- Where’s the negative? Can you only find positive feedback on a product and no negative? This may seem like a wonderful thing, but it seldom is reality. Someone is bound to have had a negative experience, if their comments can’t be found, perhaps the positive testimonials are giving a false impression.
- What aren’t they saying? Testimonials tend to only include the statements that the manufacturer or re-seller wants you to read. When you read a testimonial, think about questions that aren’t being addressed in the testimonials. What else were they doing besides using the product? How long have they been able to keep the weight off?
- “If it seems too good to be true…” The old saying, “If it seems too good to be true, then it probably isn’t”, should always be applied to testimonials. There is always something being left unsaid or falsified if it sounds too quick and easy. Permanent weight loss is never achieved quickly, or easily, but it can be done.
Testimonials can be a very helpful thing, if you know they are real. The best testimonies come from people you know personally. You know that they are real, and they also can provide answers to additional questions you might have.