SCAM ALERT: Flat Belly Fix Will Break Your Wallet

The Flat Belly Fix is one of a series of  highly problematic Spark Health Media offerings.  By our definition, it is not only a scam but a disturbing examples of  how Internet marketers steal money from unsuspecting consumers.   They claim to rid you of ALL of your belly fat in 30 days, when even liposuction can’t accomplish this feat.   This scam’s story  is similar to most other scam stories:  a ex-cop comes up with yet another weight-loss program to “help his crippled wife”.   Unlike many other questionable scams, the “creator” of this program may actually exist.   Also, there is a website called Alpha Nation that may be connected to this weight loss program.

Misleading Marketing

There are two things about Flat Belly Fix that cause our greatest concerns.  First, it resorts to a marketing strategy in which it enlists an army of “marketing affiliates” who create the fake review websites that use terms like “scam” “does it work” and “review” to rope in unsuspecting consumers who think they are actually getting objective information. Instead, they are getting fake info for which the affiliates will receive very lucrative commissions through Clickbank.   And guess who is paying for those commissions?

This posting at Clickbank is telling affiliate marketers that they will pay out $40.82 from every consumer who purchases this plan.  Given that they only charge $37 for people who sign up, this confirms that they use upselling to squeeze more money from the unsuspecting consumers.   This is a red-flashing light that a scam is afoot.

The Science Behind the Diet Is Non-Existent

The second red flashing light is that the science behind the weight loss is highly questionable.   The marketer relies upon the properties of capsaicin…..the key element in spicy peppers.   If you shell out your $37, you’ll essentially receive basic weight loss information (which you can find online for free), a few diet recommendations, a recipe for spicy tea and a set of exercise videos.

Mr. Lamb’s marketing scheme mirrors other health scams like The 3-Week Diet, ED Miracle, Red Smoothie Detox Factor, Heartburn No More, Yeast Infection No More and Pregnancy Miracle. All these scams are exposed here.

Our greatest concern — and one that you should share — is that these marketers are less interested in selling you this book and its information.  They are laser focused on upselling you are much as possible and making as much money from you as possible.   Their e-books are the bait to ensnare you.   If you must take that bait, so be it.   But attempt to avoid the other traps that lay await for you by unscrupulous marketers who apparently will bombard you with offers once you enter their realm.

If you’ve made the mistake of signing up for this scheme, you can get a refund within 60-days of purchase from Clickbank.   Do it!  Once you sign up for these kinds of scams, you’ll be targeted for even more of them.

Free or Low-Cost Diets That Work

There is an abundance of free or low-cost lifestyle offerings available on line.  Begin by going to this free and reputable website and then follow-up with your doctor to make sure that the diet you’ve chosen will work for you.    Another way is to use a high-protein diet or meal replacements;  that’s one of the reasons why the Paleo Diet has proven so effective.

Another is through gradual weight-loss plans that change your lifestyle, and not just your calories.  Perhaps most importantly, these are free or low-cost diets available on line.  Please know that no matter how well-intentioned you are, without a commitment to exercise and substantial lifestyle changes, you likely won’t succeed in maintaining any weight loss.  And if you have that commitment or will-power, then just about ANY diet will succeed.   You don’t have to pay $40 for the information.    Begin by going to the Mayo Clinic’s free and reputable website.  The medical experts at the Clinic have fashioned a thoughtful and time-tested plan that has worked for untold numbers of people.  Then follow-up with your doctor to make sure that the diet you’ve chosen will work for you.

Here are some additional free and reputable dieting and weight-loss resources for you on the Net:

Smart for Life

Livestrong Diet –  Aims for a loss of about 1-2 pounds per week.

GM Diet  –  It’s not really a General Motors-designed diet plan.  It’s actually a short one-week detox program.   But it could be a useful starter to a major personal diet reboot.  Linora Low gives a helpful (and free)  step-by-step video and written guide to how to do this detox program.

The Lose Weight Diet –  It does what many of the diet scammers do (take free  information and distill it down to 3 easily understood phases) but he actually offers it for free!

Our Bottom Line

Our bottom line: you don’t have to spend $37 to get information about how to sleep better (couched in ways to make you think you’ll lose weight). And beware ANY Net-based sales pitch that has uncredentialed, slick video presentations with no independent reviews. It may not be a scam, but it is probably a rip-off because it is overpriced for what it is offering.   In this case, there’s lots of good diet information in the marketplace offered at a fraction of the cost of most weight loss schemes.  Save your hard-earned money.

One additional warning:  once you give them your money, you’ll be tagged as “meat”.  Once they know that you’ll fall for this pitch, the same marketers will be coming back to you over and over and over for other such pitches.  When Wesley Virgin refers to “conversions” in his video, he’s talking about his ability to get consumers to pay more and more and more.  As they get sucked into his marketing web, he “milks” them.    So understand that if you pay these marketers anything….let alone $37…..they’ll continue to hound you with more slick schemes designed to prey on your fears and concerns.  Don’t open your door or wallet to them.

15 replies
  1. Ke Li
    Ke Li says:

    Help please, I asked to cancel the online coaching with them and they kept charging me for 2 more months.
    How do I get them to refund me and cancel for good!

    Reply
    • mshames
      mshames says:

      Document your efforts to cancel and then dispute the charges with your credit card issuer. If you’ve shown that you tried to cancel, the bank will take it from there and get you refunds for the disputed payments.

      Reply
  2. Martha Huff
    Martha Huff says:

    Ordered 2 items got the tea only. It was expense. Doesn’t work. All I got after a week was being tired and the runs. I want to share this with everyone who might be tempted to buy this bogus product.

    Reply
  3. Dissatisfied Buyer
    Dissatisfied Buyer says:

    What a scam. And they used all of the “sympathy buttons” and I fell for them. OMG, what could be more moving than a married couple who are both high risk cops and the guy so lovingly cares for his wife he would not rest until he found a cure for her depression due to her fatness. OMG, what a sucker I was. And now I’m trying to get a refund, but guess what? You’ll get to talk to someone in China who barely speaks English, then claims it’s a bad connection and she hangs up. I actually sent the stuff back and still don’t see a refund of $176!!! What a scam. They have somehow ranked high in Google search engines but I think in time the dissatisfied customers will out rank them simply because the tea DOES NOT WORK. Have I mentioned it’s a scam.

    Reply
    • mshames
      mshames says:

      I’m afraid this is an all-too-common tactic by these scammers. Generally, you need to cancel through the gateway that you used to purchase it. If that fails….and you have kept documentation of that cancellation, then contact your credit card issuer and contest the charge as unauthorized.

      Reply
  4. Jill
    Jill says:

    I tried to cancel right after ordering. I have not received any communication from this company, let alone my refund, despite the 60 day refund guarantee if not satisfied. Well I’m not satisfied! I want my money back.

    Reply
  5. Peter M
    Peter M says:

    I did not even receive the advertised product yet they charged me monthly fees and refuse to refund me because my request for a refund is out of their 60 day policy. The time has come to take legal action against these scammers. How do we go about this?

    Reply
    • mshames
      mshames says:

      What likely happened is you ordered the product but didn’t realize that it’s only available as an electronic download. They won’t mail you anything. Because most of these companies are off-shore, legal action is unlikely to work. That’s why we focus our effort to prevent consumers from succumbing to this scam traps.

      Reply
  6. Mark
    Mark says:

    The owner lives in a beautiful high rise in San Diego. Drives a Lambo. Knows nothing about health or weight loss.

    ClickBank let’s anyone put their fake products… with fake names and voices on their platform

    Reply
  7. Maria Teresa Iniguez
    Maria Teresa Iniguez says:

    After tracking the # for over 2 weeks I filled a dispute with PayPal. They charged my 60.46 for the tea but never received it. I contacted PayPal today to let them know I’ve tried contacting the vendor to resolve the issue and I can’t get through let alone have them answer emails. They have just escalated the case so that they can respond. Btw. When I first tracked the # it said in transit to LA after that no movement no nothing. I checked again today and DHL message there’s an issue with the tracking number i.e. not found. These people are scammers and I’m filling a report with BBB.

    Reply

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