I’ve tried keto, Whole30, SlimFast, food journaling and good old-fashioned exercise, but nothing has worked to help me reach my goal weight.
I try and I try, and it’s always like there’s something in my body that’s actively keeping me from losing weight.
Well, according to a spa technician on the Carnival Sunrise, there is. During one of the cruise’s many events, this spa technician, Agnes, explained that fat cells can be surrounded by toxins that don’t react to diet and exercise alone. These toxins can be extracted from the fat cells by red algae, which is a key ingredient of Ionithermie, a detox method with purported too-good-to-be-true benefits.
According to Radish Magazine, a healthy living magazine based in the Midwest, Ionithermie is a treatment that was invented by French physician Oliver Fouche nearly thirty years ago as a treatment for arthritis. He found that it had detoxifying qualities and provided unrelated benefits, such as improved skin and muscle tone, a reduction in the appearance of cellulite and visible slimming in treated areas. Soon European spas started to offer the treatment to their clients, and in 2003 the U.S. jumped on the bandwagon.
An Ionithermie session consists of applying clay that contains micronized red algae, proteins, amino acids and 104 trace minerals to problem areas — such as the stomach, legs and butt — and stimulating them with electric pulses. This process causes the muscles to flex, which helps move toxins out of individual cells and into the lymphatic system. Christa Feist, a registered nurse and owner of the Ionislim spa in Iowa, told Radish that Ionithermie’s work on a cellular level is what makes it different from other detox methods.
“You have the toxins going out, but you also have proteins and amino acids going in, so people end up feeling recharged,” she said.
I can’t say I totally agree with her. On the last day of my cruise, I decided to treat myself to a session of Ionithermie. The whole thing lasted about an hour and made me so tired that I could hardly make it back to my room to fall onto my bed and pass out.
The session began with Agnes taking my measurements followed by a vigorous body brushing to get the circulation going. She expanded on the process as she went along, specifying the direction in which I should brush my body parts and how often: once in the morning before my shower and once at night.
After the brushing, she applied a cream to help decrease the appearance of cellulite and stretch marks. She worked the lotion in like a mini massage. Then she covered the front of my thighs and my stomach with the algae infused clay and connected the electrodes.
Being the overachiever I am, I had her turn me all the way up.
As I lay on the spa bed, she explained that the intensity of the electric pulses topped off at “99” (99 what? I’m still not sure). The more intense the pulses, the more results I would see. Being the overachiever I am, I had her turn me all the way up.
It felt like someone was wringing out my thighs and lower abdomen like a damp towel. It was a sensation that ebbed and flowed in a way that didn’t allow me to get used to it. I noticed it didn’t feel too bad on my stomach or right thigh, but my left thigh was in near agony as the pulses contracted my muscles. When I told Agnes, she explained that the less exercised a body part is, the more painful the pulses will be, which made me feel pretty good about my core routine.
After about 30 minutes of this treatment, Agnes took my measurements again, noting the immediate loss of inches: five in total. I was astounded by the immediacy of the results, but to be honest, they were completely unnoticeable.
She didn’t weigh me before we began, so I wasn’t sure the loss of inches translated to actual weight loss. Ionithermie doesn’t claim weight loss as a result, but it would’ve been interesting to see a correlation.
Agnes went on to tell me about the products that constitute the homecare program. She showed me a set of creams and liquids that would almost mimic the treatment in their effectiveness. The program consisted of Tonic Silhouette, A&B ampoules, Pro-Metasystem, and Lait Pour Les Corps .
The whole package was too rich for my blood, and when Agnes stressed the importance of a good diet and ample exercise to see any real results with the products, all I heard was the same old same old. So I simply left five inches slimmer with a story to tell.
Losing five inches without moving a muscle myself is nothing short of magical. The treatment gave me the confidence to don my fancy last-dinner-on-the-cruise dress after days of eating like the world was going to end. Good old-fashioned diet and exercise combined with this instantly gratifying treatment could yield some serious results.
Independent clinical trials prove that the results of Ionithermie are consistent. Performed in 2001, the studies show that Ionithermie always improves something, be it a reduction in the hips or waist or the improvement of skin tone, at least after 10 treatments.
In the case studies performed by The OnboardSpa by Steiner, four female models of various ages, lifestyles and body types completed nine sessions of Ionithermie over three weeks while also using the homecare program. In addition to all of that treatment, the models made some minor lifestyle changes, such as drinking more water and consuming less processed food and alcohol. They all lost an average of about 17 inches all over their bodies.
With results like these, it’s no wonder Ionithermie is popping up in spas all over America. It still isn’t as popular in the U.S. as it is in Europe, but there are places in New York City where the treatment is offered: Cellulite Endermologie Center, Tribeca Spa of Tranquility and Avanti Day Resort, to name a few. It’s looking like Ionithermie can be the cherry on top of the protein-rich, low-calorie, sugar-free cake that is diet and exercise.
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