Weight Loss Supplements - What Works Best?Weight Loss SUpplements - What works best« click for printable PDF version

The two questions that people most often ask in our weight loss clinics are (i) whether the HCG Diet really does help burn hard-to-get fat and (ii) which weight loss supplements are best.

In another article, we went over the details of the HCG Diet - it really does help burn hard-to-get fat and, in my estimation, one of the very best tools available to help lose weight.

In this article, I will explain exactly which weight loss supplements might be helpful to lose weight and which ones to avoid.

Rather than speak from experience alone, I will quote from several key research papers to include the findings by doctors and scientists around the world from the last 10-15 years.

In 2004, researchers Pittler & Ernst published a global literature review in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition (v79, nr4) to assess the effectiveness of weight loss supplements.

The research by Pittler & Ernst was comprehensive and solid, including only those studies which were both randomized and double-blind. This eliminated skewed manufacturer's claims or other non-scientifically-acceptable data.

That study showed that the evidence for most dietary supplements as aids in reducing body weight was "not convincing".

In fact, the report went one step further to say that NONE of the weight loss supplements included in the review were recommended for use in weight loss.


This month, researcher Melinda Manore of the University of Oregon published the results of a similar study - reviewing the hundreds of weight loss supplements available in the $2.4-billion-per-year weight loss supplements market in the U.S.

Dr. Manore went one step further than her UK colleagues and investigated claims by type of weight loss supplement reviewing:

    - Appetite suppressants

    - Fat and/or carbohydrate blockers

    - Stimulants to increase metabolism

    - Products that claim to change the body composition

Sadly, Dr. Manore's conclusion is strikingly similar to that of Pittler & Ernst and confirms our own experience as well.

The reports states that "There is no strong research evidence indicating that one specific supplement will produce significant weight loss, especially long term."

In subsequent comments, the study even goes one step further to warn against many supplements due to their adverse health effects.

But if people are buying $2.4 billion of supplements from stores and websites, can this conclusion really be true? What about those wonderful claims from the manufacturers?

Dr. Manores' study addressed this as well and found that many so-called weight loss products had no randomized clinical trials on which to base their claims - meaning that the results of those "studies" or "clinical trials" by the manufacturer are junk and not at all meaningful.

Isn't there any good news about weight loss supplements? Doesn't anything help at all?

In contrast to the earlier 2004 study, the latest report does show that "some supplements" ...may complement a healthy lifestyle to produce small weight losses and/or prevent weight gain over time."

What are these supplements and where can you buy them?

Those supplements which may work to "produce small weight losses" are not what you think.

The fat burners, carb blockers or other fancy-sounding weight loss supplements are shown to have no effect.

On the other hand, green tea, additional fiber and low-fat dairy were shown to help produce a modest weight loss when used in conjunction with a calorie-restricted diet.

"Adding fiber, calcium, protein and drinking green tea can help," Manore said. "But none of these will have much effect unless you exercise and eat fruits and vegetables."

The conclusion of this big study lines up exactly with our own observations... Weight loss supplements don't work. They may lighten your wallet, but not your body.

So the next time the packaging on a Fat Burner product or the advertisement for a Carb Blocker screams success in your ear, please ignore it and save your money.

If you are not yet on the WeightWorks program and want to learn more about how we can help, please complete our online get-acquainted questionnaire. Enter the coupon code "ARTICLE50" and we will take 50% off the cost of an initial doctor consultation to review your situation, make suggestions and answer any questions you may have.

Click here to go to the questionnaire.

Your naturally-thin self is there, waiting to come out - but just don't bother with any "weight loss supplements"

   - - Yours in health,   The Doctors of WeightWorks

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