Tampa, FL - In the heart of Hyde Park, at Raydiance Tanning and Wellness Spa, you can find a brighter way to lose weight.
"I could see results. I could feel results," said Sarah Starr of Tampa, a single mom who says she lost several pounds and a few inches around her waist in just two months.
"I wanted to lose cellulite on the back of my legs because I couldn't wear short skirts and I was insecure about that."
Now, Starr is proudly wearing shorts. She says the reason is in the little red lights that beam onto her body while she works out.
Manufactured in Sarasota, The Stimulight was invented in St. Petersburg. Using "near infrared light", the lighted panels are attached to treadmills and elipticals.
It is not like infrared light has never been used for health benefits. It has been around for decades. This is the first time, though, that someone has paired the lights with exercise equipment.
Retired Air Force General Tanker Snyder of Tampa said, "In about 30 minutes, I can go further and faster at a greater pace. I do not feel sore the next day."
Snyder used to be in charge of the country's airforce operations out of MacDill Air Force Base. A once-skeptic military man is moving full-tilt toward bringing the Stimulight to other veterans.
"I'm trying to evaluate whether it is something [that]would be appropriate for use in the military, particularly fitness and recovering from injuries," said Snyder.
"The benefit to the vets, for example, or anyone in that age demographic, especially if they have injuries, is it causes DNA synthesis, which means it actually increases the rate of healing of the cell," said Stimulight inventor Andrew Stebbins of Pinellas County.
Three years ago, the 46-year-old quit his job selling advertising to spend his life on the Stimulight. He admits, at first, even he was skeptical.
"How can certain wavelengths of light cause increased metabolism?" asked Stebbins rhetorically.
Then, he realized that adding the infrared lights to existing exercise equipment would be a weight loss remedy.
"You burn body fat at a rate that is twice as fast than if you did the exercise without the device," said Stebbins.
Stebbins says you get a 40-minute workout in just 20 minutes.
"Certain wavelengths of light actually cause you to increase your metabolism so you burn more calories and body fat," said Stebbins.
Stebbins says Stimulight is also proven to relieve pain for those suffering from arthrytis and fibromyalgia because near infrared light reduces inflammation.
As for the lights reducing cellulite? Starr says she's living proof. Stebbins wants that for everyone. He's already well on his way when you consider the countries that are already promoting the product.
"Czech Republic, Poland, Greece, Germany," Stebbins listed.
Some local medical doctors agree near infrared light does speed up the regeneration of cells. But, they say, because the idea of mixing the light with exercise is still so new, there is not enough research to say certainly that the combination means weight loss.
The price point for the product right now keeps the Stimulight available to the public but mostly at gyms and spas.
There are many trials going on at Bay area spas and gyms. Click here for more information.
Erica Pitzi, 10 News Reporter