Zerona Fat Loss Laser Treatment Review

The Zerona Fat Loss Laser Treatment is a non-invasive cold-laser treatment used to remove fat and inches from troubled areas on the body.

The company is headquartered out of Melbourne, FL, but there are multiple provider locations throughout the United States and Canada, with one location overseas in Scotland.

Depending on the area or areas you wish to target for fat elimination, a six-treatment package over the course of two weeks (three 40-minute sessions each week) can cost anywhere from $1,700-$3,000.

Zerona Fat Loss Laser Treatment Claims [1] [2]

“Zerona is Beauty. Zerona is Confidence. Zerona is Health. Zerona is a Fresh Start.”

“‘It zaps away fat without the bruising, scars, or downtime.’ —Dr. Travis Stork from ‘The Doctors’”

“The Zerona Z-26 laser is specially designed for non-invasive body contouring. The laser is applied externally and has been proven through double-blind, multi-site, placebo controlled clinical trials to emulsify adipose tissue.”

“Real Science, Real Results. If you’ve tried diet and exercise but still have fat and inches you just can’t lose…It’s time for Zerona-Z6”

Now, the fact that they use a quote from a television personality whose greatest claim to fame was appearing on “The Bachelor” gives me a little pause, but overall they’re not really crowing “miracle cure.” Aside from the standard thin-equals-confidence spiel—and for some it does—most of the marketing is about the laser itself and what it does.

And they don’t skimp on their science. Sixteen separate journal and science magazine articles—not just abstracts (summaries)—are available via direct links on the Zerona website. From concise explanations of adipose tissue to a look at low-level laser techniques, Zerona covers their bases. We’ll look at those bases in a moment.

While I realize it’s a little difficult to “return” a surgery, non-invasive or otherwise, it is troubling that the Terms of Service on the Zerona website is completely non-existent, outside of the words “Terms of Service.” It’s possible that because the service is offered through providers, terms of service are covered individually as well.

Zerona Fat Loss Laser Treatment Ingredients [2]

Essentially you, the Zerona Z26 cold laser, and 40 minutes—20 lying on your back and 20 lying on your stomach. Plus plenty of water and no alcohol or caffeine before and immediately after treatments.

The Science Behind the Zerona Fat Loss Laser Treatment

So let’s check out the science beyond the virtual walls of the Zerona website.

“Adipose tissue” is a newer catchphrase that tends to make you think of Doctor Who aliens (in fact, the little guys were actually called the Adipose), but fat cells have always been called that. We’re all born with them, and the hormones that determine our gender also determine, when they kick in at puberty, where the bulk of our adipose tissue hangs out—for men, the chest, abdomen, and buttocks; for women, the breasts, waist, hips, and buttocks. At puberty, the body stops producing them—so “getting fat” doesn’t mean we have more adipose tissue, just that each adipose cell we have gets bigger. Unless you gain a lot of weight really fast, or—and I found this most interesting—you have liposuction. Turns out the body likes a set amount and will reproduce those cells taken away. [3]

There’s also the whole deal with brown-vs-white fat, but since treatments like Zerona tend to target the white, we’ll stay with that here.

Fat cells are unique; they have a much smaller nucleus than other types of cells, and are 85 percent storage. Picture a tiny bubble wrap bubble with one small control center and a drop of fat. How big that drop is determines how “fat” we look. In other words, does the bubble wrap look new, or fully popped? Science.HowStuffWorks.com has a great article explaining the details of how the body processes and stores fat, but we’ll skip to the getting rid of fat stage. [3]

When you use up more calories than you take in, your body needs to pull energy from somewhere else. Enzymes are sent to trigger a biochemical process for the fat cells to release their storage—a bit like switching to the reserve fuel tank on a vehicle—and the cells shrink because they’re empty and take up less space. [4]

What the Zerona laser seems to do is bypass that enzyme trigger and instead disrupt the wall of the fat cell itself—like poking a hole in a plastic bag filled with water. Allegedly this “emulsifies” the fat in the cell, releasing it. The empty cell shrinks.

But this question arises: if the cells are releasing their fat, but the body isn’t using it (via exercise), where does it go? The Zerona site doesn’t offer an answer to that.

However, an outside source in a LiveScience.com article noted that:

The procedure, which lasts about 40 minutes, should be done at least six times every other day to be effective, according to the company website. If more than 72 hours lapses between treatments, the fat cells may take up the fat again, the website says. [5] (emphasis added)

Word On The Street About Zerona Fat Loss Laser Treatment

If you are going to shell out thousands of dollars for a treatment, it should last longer than a week. But that said, “body contouring”—which Zerona plugs—isn’t the same thing as weight loss or fat loss.

Still, a “revolutionary new treatment” tends to have a lot of people excited. So we’ll look at what patients say, and what providing physicians (mostly cosmetic/plastic surgeons) say.

The Zerona website doesn’t have testimonials, just before-and-after shots—which in these days of Photoshop aren’t necessarily reliable. Most of the patient reviews come in the comments sections of other Zerona review articles or blogs. Here are two:

“Kanwal” from a DietSpotlight.com review: “I am doing Zerona, at a reputable clinic, in a very reputable city known for their elite education system.4th treatment and nothing has happenend literally! I had a waist of 28 inch and it still is 28 inch, and it really doesn’t make scientfic sense as any MD will tell you. I have thrown away 2G’s!” [6]

“Freespirit02” from a RealSelf.com forum about Zerona: “When I turned 55 this year (2016) I took a look at myself in the mirror and was mortified! I was overweight … I had no energy, was overeating unhealthy food and was not happy at what I had become. … [Zerona] was a healthy alternative to surgery and they could treat me body contouring as a whole, not just in certain areas. I had 15 treatments and a strict diet plan sorted for me by the staff nutritionist. … I dropped 3 dress sizes including skin tightening after 15 treatments. …The treatments helped curb my appetite for unhealthy foods and drink more water. My energy came back as well as my self confidence and desire to get my “groove” back. There was no discomfort or side effects.” [7]

Cosmetic and plastic surgeons are equally divided. According to Live Science,

This isn’t a procedure that treats obesity or is a miracle cure, it’s just is an alternative or an additional procedure to traditional liposuction,” said Dr. Gregory C. Roche, a plastic surgeon in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, who has conducted research on Zerona. [5]

When asked if this treatment lasts, after adequate research done by Roche with his patients who have received the treatment , he said,

About two weeks after the procedure, the patients who received the Zerona treatment regained an average of 0.31 inches (about 1 cm) across their waists, hips and thighs summed together. The researchers aren’t sure what caused this increase in volume, it could have been from swelling or from the addition of new fat cells, Roche said. [5]

But Dr. Darryl K. Hoffman, MD, plastic surgeon in San Jose California, says: “Zerona works. There are studies in our plastic surgery journals that document results of low level laser for fat reduction. I have been using the Zerona laser in my Palo Alto office since July [2010] and have been generally impressed. … Zerona is an alternative to liposuction for those who want to completely avoid an invasive procedure and risk. I believe these type of treatments are the direction that plastic surgery is going in the 21st century.” [8]

Blogger “Monica” at RunEatRepeat.com did an entire post about her experience with Zerona, and while she was not negative toward it, she would also not do it again. Some of her last words about trying Zerona were, “Because it is expensive and the results aren’t super AMAZING I would suggest others first try and lose the fat naturally via exercise and diet (as I did).” [9]

The Bottom Line

Is Zerona Fat Loss Laser Treatment worth a try?

Problematic.This is a very expensive treatment for less-than-impressive results. It’s not a weight-loss miracle, it’s small-scale body contouring that may or may not stick around long-term. The only effort you will be putting out is the work it will take to pay off this treatment. There are no side effects, which is a positive, but traditional liposuction is more proven once diet and exercise alone are exhausted as options. Someday science may develop a cheaper, less invasive form of liposuction, but Zerona isn’t it.

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