Are Waist Trainers Worth The Hype? Here’s What You Need To Know

As a competitive bodybuilder, I am always looking for ways to improve my physique. I compete in Figure, and in this division, it is desirable to have an hourglass figure with big shoulders and legs. I kept seeing a lot of ads and some famous fitness gurus’ assurances that waist trainers did wonders. So I figured why not try it and ordered a waist trainer. 

For the first few days, I only wore it for a few hours. After that, I wore it an hour longer each day until I was wearing it for 8 hours which is the “recommended” amount. When I wore the waist trainer, it felt really tight and it was hard to breathe. What’s more, I honestly did not like the feeling of all my insides being squeezed together. I only wore it for a few weeks and then decided it wasn’t worth it. 

After I stopped wearing it, I had a hard time eating and could not finish all my meals. Also, I had digestive issues. 

Because of that, I did some research. According to the American Board of Cosmetic Surgery (ABCS), a waist trainer will not drastically change your body shape. However, it can lead to serious health problems. 

The truth is that waist training is a painful and ineffective way to slim down. Wearing it might help you lose a few inches but this is due to the loss of fluids through perspiration rather than loss of fat. It’s also because you are probably eating less since your stomach is compressed. Therefore, any weight loss that occurs when wearing a waist trainer is likely due to the fact that your stomach is being crushed — and sacrificing your health for a ‘smaller waist’ is simply a bad idea. 

Furthermore, there are many more negative effects of waist trainers.

  • Using a waist trainer for long periods of time can weaken your core muscles, leading to back pain and poor posture.
  • According to the ABCS, wearing a waist trainer can reduce your lung capacity by 30 to 60 percent. It affects your breathing and it can even lead to inflammation or a build-up of fluid in the lungs. 
  • When you wear it, you’re not only squeezing skin and fat, you’re crushing parts of your digestive system, including the esophagus, stomach, and intestines. Squeezing your organs can affect blood flow and change how organs function. This, in turn, can lead to permanent organ damage, and even rib fractures. 

Some good benefits of waist training are:

  • Temporary reduction in waist size. 
  • That is all. 

As you can see, the cons far outweigh the pros. The bottom line is that waist trainers will not do a magic trick and reduce belly fat, make you lose weight, or give you the perfect hourglass figure. All a waist trainer does is squeeze your torso for a temporary change in appearance. And if it’s overused or cinched too tightly, it can cause serious health problems. 

The healthiest and most effective way to trim your waist is through a balanced diet and regular exercise.

If you want to lose weight and improve your body shape, there is no better method than a healthy diet and regular exercise. Watch your portions, stop consuming sugary foods and drinks, and eat more fresh, whole foods. Add strength training to boost your metabolism and tone muscles for a tighter midsection. Consult a dietician, personal trainer, or physician on how to lose weight safely. They can also suggest a diet and exercise plan to help you reach your goals. 

With that being said stop looking for quick fixes to get your dream body and do the hard work.

Photo via Kourtney Kardashian Instagram



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