A large part of TikTok has swiftly become the modern-day ‘Agony Aunt’ answer column. You have a problem and an influencer just so happens to know the answer – not to mention they’ve been employing the technique they’re about to share with you for years. Or better yet, the algorithm directs you straight to their videos with its curious (and creepy) ‘all-knowing’ accuracy to answer a question you didn’t even know you had.
While many influencers and TikTokkers have undoubtedly spoilt users with inside tips and tricks (skin cycling and the oval lining lip trend have our stamps of approval) there are many bogus trends that are as odd as they are useless and even dangerous.
Here are a few TikTok wellness trends to lump in your not-so-fast folder:
1. Coffee and lemon
Why it caught on:
Claims gushed on the internet sharing that the coffee-lemon combo kickstarted their weight-loss journies and helped them burn excess weight in short periods of time – like any age-old diet fad.
However, if we needed a reminder not to believe everything we see just because it’s gone viral, the coffee and lemon hack fits the bill.
One reason the trend rocketed to fame was because of the “doctor approval” it seemingly had. However, a female fat loss coach, Emily Hackett shared that the doctor associated with the video wasn’t actually giving approval. Rather his photos and videos were simply being used for users to “legitimise their content”. Ie: The doctor reportedly wasn’t commenting on the coffee-lemon video itself; his other content had been repurposed by someone else so it could simply appear so.
Several experts agree that adding lemon to coffee doesn’t actually have any faster weight-loss superpowers. Dr Alona Pulde who specialises in nutrition shared that “there’s no magic combination of coffee and lemon that can aid weight loss,” while Healthline noted that its ‘wonder’ properties are a false claim.
What can be attributed to any ‘weight loss’ according to experts could be the coffee, not the coffee and lemon mix.
2.The salt water flush out
Why it caught on:
Promising to flush out the “sludge” in the small intestine to aid weight loss, the #saltflush rose to popularity in September after being put on the map by a TikToker Olivia Hedlund, who claims to be a Functional Nutritional Therapy Practitioner.
Many people thought it made sense, especially when noting that in in some cultures, seawater is used to cleanse the body; including Zulu culture where the purging of the body’s toxins is also associated with a spiritual cleansing.
However, for the flush-out trend, the goal exchanges spiritual catharsis for a laxative effect, which for many who struggle with feeling bloated or constipated seemed like a prized trend.
As registered dietitian and author of The mindful Glow Cookbook Abbey Sharp famously noted,the method is like “napalm for your bowels” referring to the loss of sodium and fluids. Further, she advises that it could change the balance of your microbiome which may result in future complications for your tum.
@abbeyskitchen No health care professional should be giving a Salt water flush tutorial – even if they preface it with a token “do your research” disclaimer. Salt water detoxes can be dangerous and should NOT be relied upon for constipation, especially without professional individual support. #saltwaterflush ♬ original sound – abbeyskitchen
This kind of cleanse is not advised without a professional opinion because of its dangerous charms, especially for people who have high blood pressure or kidney complications as Insider confers.
Why it caught on:
Earlier this year, dry scooping swooped onto the scene, with many users claiming that taking pre-workout powders without adding water had jolted them with extra energy. The ‘discovery’ was that their bodies absorbed the pre-workout faster when it was dry.
As many gym bunnies already know, pre-workout in itself is not to be overdone in the first place. There’s a lot of caffeine in these products already, so enhancing that intake might work those energy wonders at a cost.
Then there’s ‘aspiration’, and not in a cute way. Aspiration, albeit fitting for fitness gurus, also refers to inhaling the powder, which can cause an infection in your lungs as Healthline records.
Lastly, and most worryingly for many users, your heart could be impacted. One TikTok user claimed she had a heart attack to which a verified doctor, Dr Fahran, shared that this is a possibility for various reasons. Dr Fahran noted that the pre-workout supplements tend to slip under regulations, meaning that ‘mystery ingredients’ may be thrown into the mix. He further added that the main worry is the excessive caffeine that, in his opinion, could cause a young person to have intensive heart complications.
@madmedicine #stitch with @brivtny please be careful! #preworkout #workout #heart #heartattack #doctor #LoveMeMode #surgeon #gym #preworkoutpowder #RefundGlowUp ♬ original sound – Dr. Farhan
So, remember to hold onto your horses before you try any new wellness trend, especially as the cynics would say, if it sounds too good to be true.
Feature Image: Pexels