We all know how difficult losing weight can be. When the efforts of good old fashion diet and exercise seem to be in vain, we may often seek ways to yield better results with diet supplements and pills. These products are often marketed with incredible weight loss “testimonies” and “stories”, but the question sill arises, do these diet supplements actually work? Well, considering the fact millions of people still struggle to lose weight, it is hard to believe that any of these supplements are effective at all. Besides, if weight loss came in a bottle, wouldn’t we all be thin?
The Painful Truth: Most of them are a Waste of Money
Diet Supplements range from diuretics to appetite suppressants, to thermogenic fat burners. Even if the supplements did work, it would be very minimal. The chances of you gaining the weight right back are very high. Not to mention that if diet and exercise habits start to slip, the effects of the supplement will be cancelled out entirely.
But what about the Ultra-Popular Garcinia Cambogia?
This supplement is touted as a fat burner and appetite suppressant. It is currently one of the highest selling diet pills available on the market, largely due to the fact that it has been endorsed by Dr Mehmet Oz. He referred to the supplement as “revolutionary”, however, scientific studies have proven otherwise. In 2009, the FDA advised consumers not to purchase the supplement due to previous cases of liver damage as a result of taking the product. According to WebMD, it may cause unpleasant side effects such as:
The active ingredient is hydroxy citric acid. Although studies have proven this chemical to have thermogenic properties and the ability to cut back on the appetite, the effects are minimal and hardly noticed after taking the pills.
Diet Supplement Manufactures can Sell you whatever they want
Manufacturers of these supplements do have the option of having their products tested by third-party companies to confirm the ingredients listed. However, this is not a requirement and most companies do not bother with such practices.
Many companies will use phrases on their labelling to describe undisclosed ingredients, such as “proprietary blend” as a marketing ploy. However, being unaware of all ingredients listed can be dangerous.
Your Health is Most Important
According to the Food and Drug Administration, the active ingredients in some supplements can have life-threatening consequences if combined with other supplements or medications. For example, taking a product with caffeine (as most weight loss supplements contain) whilst being on a prescription stimulant can cause serious problems to your liver or heart.
It can also be fatal if diet supplements are taken in place of prescription medications such as cholesterol or diabetic meds.
According to Brian Quebbeman, M.D., a bariatric surgeon in California warns about products that are touted as “all natural”. He states “Just because a supplement looks natural, it doesn’t mean it’s harmless.”