How Safe are Fat Burning Supplements?

My Bariatric Life Health Guide
  • We all have some bad habits, about that there is little doubt. Perhaps we leave lights on in rooms that are not occupied or place our shoes in areas where someone stumbling over them is guaranteed. Perhaps we borrow things from family members without asking. Perhaps we forget to lock doors or windows before going to bed at night. And, of course, there is now a universal habit that has become popularized in not just the United States but worldwide: Perhaps we eat in a way that is not only unhealthy but that will force weight gain or obesity.

    Overeating and the poor conditions that can result from overeating promote a desire for some immediate or near-immediate resolution. Borrowing property from family members is one thing, and swallowing a burst of laughter when that same family member tangles himself in the shoes we left lying about is another, but being overweight is all about us. It is our appearance, our esteem, the way we believe others perceive us. When our psychology is affected, we want an end game and we want it fast. Something simple please. Something like fat burning supplements.

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    Fat Burning Supplements

    Fat burners are pills that contain herbal ingredients such as Ephedra, HCA, Chitosan, and Pyruvate. The contention is that these ingredients increase energy, boost metabolism, or decrease appetite. The general effectiveness of  fat burning supplements is something of a grey area.

    Definitive studies do not seem to be available as yet, and further studies are necessary. There doe seem to be a general  agreement that the purity of some the supplements is questionable. There is no standardization for fat burners, so the consumer cannot be sure that the ingredients on the labels is accurate or even factual.

    In addition, the long-term effects of fat burning supplements is not known nor is their interaction with other medications.

    Are Fat Burning Supplements Safe?

    The answer to that question is to proceed with caution and educate yourself as a consumer. Read the ingredients on the label and research to discover how effective each if for burning fat. If exercise and healthy diet are not  recommended then the product is probably not effective and could actually be harmful.

    Chitosan is a fat burner that does not work. Studies that do support it have not been published in peer-reviewed journals. There is also concern that Chitosan interrupts the absorption of the carotenoids that the body converts into vitamin A.

    Ephedra has been the cause of multiple hundreds of reports to the FDA regarding adverse effects such as high blood pressure, irregular heart rate, nervousness, insomnia, heart attack, stroke, and seizures. Mixing Ephedra with caffeine may be behind many of these incidents and should not be done at all.

    A study published in the Medical Journal of Australia maintains that HCA is non-effective for weight loss.

    Prior to taking any medication or supplement, it is always recommended that a physician or qualified health professional be consulted.


  • - - accessed 8/10/12

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    Dr. Greg Lane - - accessed 8/10/12


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    My Story...

    You can read about my decision to have weight loss surgery back in 2003, and since that time my journey from processed food junkie to healthy living so as to maintain a lifetime of obesity disease management. My wish is to help you on your own journey of lifetime obesity disease management. Whether you are planning or have had bariatric surgery, or you want to lose weight through non-surgical means, my shareposts along the way will help you to navigate your journey successfully.

Published On: August 13, 2012