Are Body Wraps Safe?

by Carole Ellis

Body wraps are designed to help you shed weight from your body quickly. They employ a number of herbs and other natural ingredients to "melt" off weight. Body wraps can be a bit disconcerting because of the confining nature of the treatment, but they are completely harmless as long as you take a few common sense precautions.

Function

Body wraps use herbs, aloe, seaweed and other brand-specific ingredients to draw toxins out of the body along with "hard" fats. They purport to literally break down fat and draw it out of the skin while tightening the skin itself, which leads to a leaner, smoother figure at the end of the treatment. Body wraps were originally designed as a cleansing process, and the inch loss was just a pleasant side effect.

Types

Body wraps come in various types, although the main goal is always to cleanse the body and, sometimes, clear and relax the mind. They come in three main varieties: herbal, detoxing clay and mineral. Many body wraps employ combinations of these components, and some spas offer supplements like collagen. All three types are intended to draw out toxins and replace them with vital nutrients that the body needs.

Benefits

Body wraps benefit you on several fronts. The entire experience can be quite relaxing and can help you clear your mind. Also, they remove toxins from your body, which will make you feel healthier. Perhaps the most highly publicized benefit of body wraps is that they remove literally inches from your waist, thighs and arms in a matter of about an hour.

Misconceptions

Many people think that a body wrap is a permanent weight loss solution. However, in reality you will regain the lost inches as your body resumes its natural shape in a matter of weeks at most. If you lose weight after the body wrap, you may be able to retain your improved figure, but that will be because of your weight loss effort rather than a permanent effect of the wrap.

Time Frame

A body wrap takes an hour if you also gently exercise, and an hour and a half if you do not. They can be enjoyed as often as you like. Inch loss continues in some cases for up to 72 hours after the completion of the wrap. If you wish to make body wraps part of a weight loss program, they should be spaced four to seven days apart until you have reached your goal weight.

Warning

Some body wraps contain aluminum, which has been linked to Alzheimer's disease. If you are concerned about this, then you need to ask ahead of time if your body wrap will contain any aluminum. You should also always do a skin test before getting a new type of body wrap to make sure that you will not experience an allergic reaction.