March 7, 2012
Magic Weight Loss Pill Doesn’t Exist, Most Supplements Are Ineffective.
After studying weight loss supplements and the body of evidence surrounding them, an Oregon State University researcher has found that no single product is proven 100 percent effective. In fact, many can be harmful to your health.
Melinda Manore posted her study online in the International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism.
Manore is the professor of nutrition and exercise sciences at Oregon State University, and is a member of the Science Board for the President´s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition. Manore found that some of the products she researched, such as green tea, fiber, and low-fat dairy supplements, did achieve a small weight loss benefit of no more than 4 pounds. However, Manore warns that it is important to remember that these products may have been effective because they were used in tandem with a reduced calorie diet.
“For most people, unless you alter your diet and get daily exercise, no supplement is going to have a big impact,” Manore said.
The supplements studied fell into four categories: products such as chitosan that block absorption of fat or carbohydrates, stimulants such as caffeine or ephedra that increase metabolism, products such as conjugated linoleic acid that claim to change the body composition by decreasing fat, and appetite suppressants such as soluble fibers.
In her research, she found that clinical trials examining the supplements effectiveness were not randomized. Furthermore, the research studies for many of these supplements did not include a daily exercise regimen as a part of the trial. In fact, the majority of the products showed less than a 2 pound weight loss when compared to the placebo.
Manore´s research focuses on the effects of nutrition and exercise on health and performance.
In her study, Manore said “What people want is to lose weight and maintain or increase lean tissue mass. There is no evidence that any one supplement does this. And some have side effects ranging from the unpleasant, such as bloating and gas, to very serious issues such as strokes and heart problems.”
Manore suggests the old fashioned method of healthy diet and exercise as a means to lose weight, rather than taking supplements to build muscle or shed pounds.
Her research has shown that a healthy diet full of whole grains, vegetables, lean meats and fruit are a far more effective means of weight loss. Additionally, staying active will help burn calories as well as build muscle.
In her study, Manore makes several suggestions for those looking to shed pounds without the use of supplements. For instance, she suggests to have a plan for each meal. Without a plan, you may make a spontaneous and poor choice when it comes to your food.
Starting out with a large salad and low-calorie dressing may help you feel more full when eating out at a restaurant. This will help you eat less once your entree arrives.
Finding ways to stay active, even if you have a sedentary job will help with weight loss. She suggests standing during meetings, or walking around during long phone calls.
Finally, Manore warns about the dangers of processed foods, and says to avoid them. Foods that are harder to digest and high in fiber can boost your metabolism more than processed foods can.
Every individual is different, and therefore, the changes made by each person should be tailored for that person. The only way to ensure weight loss, however, is a change of lifestyle.
On the Net:
- Oregon State University
- Melinda Manore
- International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism