We all tend to take our health and fitness seriously. Sometimes a little too seriously—to the point where we, well, can veer toward the ridiculous. So, to celebrate April Fool's Day, we’ve rounded up a mix of hilariously real (and imagined) good-for-you gimmicks. Can you tell which is which?
Why endure the painful prick of a needle or shell out big bucks for a laser treatment when you can smooth away wrinkles in the comfort and privacy of your own home? The FaceTrainer, a super-high-tech mask that fits over most of your face, and looks like a cross between a space helmet and something Hannibal Lector would wear, uses resistance training to strengthen and tone the underlying muscles in your face and neck. The claim: After 10 minutes of daily use, you’ll see firmer, younger-looking skin in about a month.
The Bananabunker features two plastic pieces that slide neatly over either end of a banana and meet in the middle to protect your fruit from bruising when getting banged around in a backpack or briefcase. It also serves to remind you of 7th grade sex ed. Safer sex is important!
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Fetal Position Desks
Because Standing Desks are so 2014: More and more people at the workplace are throwing out their chairs and working from a more comfortable position—with their back curved, head tucked in, and arms wrapped around their torsos to block out the outside world. Yep: Fetal Position Desks are popping up in offices like Google and Facebook, and come in a variety of shapes and sizes, with adjustable heights. Researchers are calling it “the best way to stay healthy and productive at work…basically, shutting it all out, even for just a few minutes.”
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U.K. mobile service provider, O2, wants text-happy types to turn their thumbs into lean, mean button-pushing machines with Thumbells. That's right—miniature dumbbells for your two biggest digits. The company claims that their 4G speeds are so fast that users will need to strengthen the muscles in their flabby fingers to keep up. To that end, they’ve worked with a British healthcare company to develop a Fit for 4G fitness routine. The gadget, which weighs about 65 grams (about as heavy as 13 U.S. nickels), is featured in fitness videos that demonstrate basic strengthening exercises.
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Don’t have time to high-tail it to the local gym for a Zumba class? No worries, according to the makers of this fitness gadget. The Hula Chair, powered by a patented motor, gyrates your hips in a circular motion, re-creating the ab workout of a (Weeee!) hula-hoop. Makers say you can torch calories and have a rockin’ good time—while sitting on your keister!
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Pssst…these cute Spandex underpants have a little secret: a one-inch “exercise extension” sewn into the crotch. Slide it into your hoo-ha and use it as a “focus” point, squeezing for dear life as you perform Kegel exercises. Manufacturers of PantyO claim that kegels performed using the PantyO undies can strengthen the pelvic muscles, leading to enhanced sexual pleasure and better bladder control. Oh, and it may even be a stress reliever: “Why yes, Mr. Johnson [SQUEEZE SQUEEZE]. I’ll have that report ready [SQUEEZE, SQUEEZE] for you by noon... No. I’m fine. Why do you ask?" (We're just guessing on that part.)
The best way to get people to eat less is to make chewing so excruciatingly painful, they won’t dare eat. At least, that’s the idea behind the Tongue Patch, a revolutionary weight loss procedure (the brainchild of a cosmetic surgeon), which makes a low-cal liquid diet seem a lot more palatable. There’s just one teeny catch—hardly worth mentioning, really: It has to be SEWN INTO YOUR TONGUE! (The procedure takes about ten minutes and will set you back a couple thousand.)
Yippee ki-yay! Straddle the Ace Power like a thoroughbred at Churchill Downs, and let the back-and-forth thrusting motion tone your lower body while you… burn calories. This horseback-riding-inspired fitness tool was invented in Korea "for those who like to ride horse in front of TV and in home comfort of their own space."
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The Comfort Wipe
Persnickety types who are disgusted by the mere thought of soiled toilet paper (eeew!) can relax: Comfort Wipes makes pooping a much more pleasant experience. How it works: Just attach a sheet of toilet paper to the 18-inch wand and you can wipe yourself clean, without getting those digits dirty. A release button at the end of the handle drops the filthy wad into the basin to be flushed out of sight.
ANSWER: Did you spot the fakers? Truth is in fact stranger than fiction. The only "fake" things on this list were The Fetal Position Desks, imagined by the hilarious team at The Onion, and the Thumbbells, which were a marketing gimmick.