RecommendedCrossFit requires participants to cycle through various high-intensity workouts within a set timeframe. Designed to test the limits of strength, speed and endurance, CrossFit has become a go-to routine for those seeking balanced overall fitness and intensive conditioning.
Dr. Rosenthal: “This fitness regimen is an efficient way to exercise. It definitely delivers a lot of bang for the buck and is a sound and solid way to boost health. However, patients shouldn't jump from being a couch potato to adopting a high-intensity regimen. Approach it thoughtfully, do it safely and keep it up.” Photo by Runar Eilertsen/flickr (License)
RecommendedThe Paleo Diet consists of meat, fish, eggs, vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds and is devoid of grains, refined sugar, dairy, alcohol and processed foods. Advocates maintain the diet promotes weight loss, optimal health and longevity.
Dr. Rosenthal: “Overall, the diet is good. It promotes nutrient-dense foods and discourages processed foods, artifical sweeteners and carbs, such as bread and pasta, which aren't healthy. Keep in mind that one diet does not fit all. If a patient has started a new diet, they should listen to their body and monitor how they feel. It might be too restrictive and may need to be personalized. To acheive long-term weight loss success, patients should focus on mindful eating and regular exercise.”Photo by Tim Lucas/flickr (License)
Epsom bath for weight loss
Not recommendedClaims suggest that Epsom salt—a mineral compound of magnesium and sulfate—detoxifies the body, boosts weight loss, and reduces the appearance of cellulite when added to baths.
Dr. Rosenthal: “While baths are a great stress-reliever, they are not meant to be used as a weight loss solution. These baths are only a temporary fix, since you’re just losing water weight. There is no quick and easy way to lose weight. For long-lasting results, patients should change their lifestyle. Eat well and exercise.”Photo by SuperFantastic/flickr (License)
Compression socks for athletes
RecommendedCompression socks, which are typically prescribed to improve circulation for diabetics and bedridden patients, have become a trend for runners seeking quick recovery from hard workouts and races. Manufacturers claim the socks increase oxygen delivery, prevent cramps and minimize muscle fatigue.
Dr. Rosenthal: “Some studies have shown recovery benefits, but compression socks aren't for everyone. Patients should try them and decide for themselves. However, they should be careful to make sure the socks aren't so tight that they prevent optimal circulation.”Photo by ultraBobban/flickr (License)
Waist cinchers for weight loss
Not recommendedWaist cinchers, such as tight-fitting corsets, have become the latest trend for people seeking to get rid of belly fat fast and lose inches effortlessly.
Dr. Rosenthal: “Compression garments are a good physical reminder not to overeat; however, there is no quick and easy way to lose weight. There's no scientific proof supporting use of corsets as weight loss tools.” Photo by Erica Schoonmaker/flickr (License)
Lillie Rosenthal, DO, is a board-certified physical medicine and rehabilitation physician practicing in New York.