Why Weight Loss Supplements Are Not Worth It

September 26, 2016 | 235 views

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Many people struggle with achieving and maintaining their weight goals for various reasons. Companies have cashed in on their widespread dissatisfaction, by promising an easy way out for overweight people in the form of weight loss supplements.

Many will recall Dr. Mehmet Oz being grilled in a 2012 Senate hearing because of the fantastical claims he made about a product featured on his show, Pure Green Coffee extract. Senator Claire McCaskill, chair of the Senate consumer protection subcommitee, read out several statements from Oz's show:

"You may think magic is make-believe, but this little bean has scientists saying they've found the magic weight loss cure for every body type: It's green coffee extract."

"I've got the No. 1 miracle in a bottle, to burn your fat: It's raspberry ketone."

"Garcinia cambogia: It may be the simple solution you've been looking for to bust your body fat for good."

The sad thing is that these fantastic claims statements paint the supplement industry in a bad light. I personally disagree with Dr. Oz's on this subject because there is no pill that can take the place of healthy diet and proper exercise. At the end of the day, the reputation of the legitimate supplement industry emerged entirely unscathed and easily withstood this intense scrutiny. It was only the most disreputable products and manufacturers that were discredited.

Dangerous Chemicals Found in Weight Loss Supplements

Apart from fantastical claims, what is often left out in discussions is that most complaints associated with supplements are limited to a small range of products, namely weight loss, high-energy products, muscle building, sexual enhancement, and not dietary supplements.

Let's take the case of "magic" weight loss pills such as SlimEasy, Super Fat Burning Bomb, Slim Xtreme and Magic Slim, for instance. These products were recalled because they were found to contain "undeclared active pharmaceutical ingredients," specifically phenolphthalein and sibutramine.

According to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), phenolphthalein has not been approved due to concerns about carcinogenicity, while sibutramine was originally withdrawn in 2010 due to the risk of seizure, heart attack and arrhythmia.

My personal stance is that weight loss supplements are simply a Band-Aid solution and do not promote a healthy lifestyle. Dietary supplements on the other hand, have an outstanding safety record and can be useful in treating nutritional deficiencies.

4 Ingredients That Can Help Support Your Weight Loss Goals

Ideally, eating right alone will already allow you to forgo weight loss supplements. Not only is this a healthier approach, but safer too. Below are several foods known for their weight management properties, which you can incorporate into your diet:

  • Coconut Oil
  • Using this oil instead of other types of oil for cooking and baking can help promote better thyroid function, increase in energy and a drop in weight. However, coconut oil works best if you avoid foods high in sugar, starch and grains as well.

  • Resveratrol
  • This potent antioxidant is known for its ability to decrease body and liver fat and increase metabolism. You'll normally find resveratrol in red wine, but the ideal source is whole grapes, especially muscadine grapes.

  • Beta-Glucan
  • It is a soluble fiber taken from mushrooms, yeast and algae. You can find beta-glucan in Reishi, Shiitake and Maitake mushrooms. Beta-glucan also helps in modulating your immune system.

  • White Kidney Bean Extract
  • It is billed as a "new fat-blocker" due to its ability to slow down starch absorption in your digestive system, which can help you lose weight. Ideally, you should eat whole white kidney beans, as they are rich in fiber, vitamins, minerals and proteins.

Intermittent Fasting Can Help You Achieve Your Weight Goals

The timing of your meals can have a positive impact on your weight. One method you can adopt is intermittent fasting. It's a wonderful concept that can help you achieve your fitness goals by switching your energy source from sugar to fat over time, thereby helping you lose weight.

To start practicing intermittent fasting, eat your meals within an eight-hour window only. For optimal results, you should skip breakfast, eat your first meal at noontime (with an hour of exercise before that) and make dinner your last meal of the day. You combine high-intensity interval training (HIIT) exercises along with intermittent fasting, as together they can provide even better results within a short period of time.

To know more about the potential dangers of weight loss supplements and their healthy alternatives, read my article "Weight Loss Supplements: Are They Worth the Potential Risks?"