Are dietary supplements effective for weight loss? This is a question that many people have asked, and the answer is not as straightforward as it may seem. A recent study published in the journal Obesity has revealed that dietary supplements are not as effective for weight loss as they claim. The research showed that it is rare for people who take these supplements to lose a significant amount of weight. Dietary supplements are usually marketed as health aids and contain ingredients such as vitamins, minerals, fiber, caffeine, herbs, and other plants. So, do these supplements help you lose weight? According to Natural Medicines, an independent group that analyzes research on supplements, there is not enough reliable evidence to evaluate them.
The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health also states that chitosan has not been proven to be effective for weight loss. Chitosan is generally safe but can cause an upset stomach or constipation in some people. Those who are allergic to shellfish should avoid taking chitosan as it is made from seafood. Natural Medicines also states that there is not enough evidence to assess how well glucomannan works for weight loss. Additionally, glucomannan can make it difficult for the body to absorb medications. Therefore, it is recommended to take medication one hour before or four hours after using glucomannan.
In two small studies, people who took 7-keto-DHEA along with moderate exercise and a reduced calorie diet lost significantly more weight than those who received a placebo. Patients may ask their healthcare provider about taking dietary supplements to lose weight or maintain weight loss. However, proven ways to lose weight are eating healthy foods, reducing calories, and being physically active. This information will help healthcare providers work with patients to prevent supplement-drug interactions, harmful side effects, and other risks. The authors of the study have called on regulatory authorities to critically examine the dietary supplement industry and its role in promoting misleading claims and marketing products that may harm patients. The FDA can also take action against companies that make false or unfounded claims to sell their supplements. Research on over-the-counter weight-loss supplements shows that these products “have little effectiveness and pose a potentially serious risk of harm”.
If a supplement is found to be unsafe, the FDA may issue warnings or request that it be taken off the market. Many weight-loss supplements have ingredients that haven't been tested in combination with each other and their combined effects are unknown. An estimated 34% of Americans trying to lose weight have used them which is why there is little scientific evidence to show that weight-loss supplements work. Drug interactions are also a concern when taking dietary supplements for weight loss. Like most dietary supplements, some weight-loss supplements can interact or interfere with other medications or supplements you're taking. Ephedra (also called más huáng) is a plant that contains substances that can stimulate the nervous system, increase the amount of energy burned, increase weight loss and suppress appetite. The authors of the study suggest that evaluation should be collaborative with the supplement industry and academics working together to design high-quality clinical trials on weight-loss supplements.
When the FDA discovers an unsafe dietary supplement, it can recall it from the market or ask the supplement manufacturer to recall it from the market. In conclusion, while dietary supplements may be marketed as aids for weight loss, there is not enough reliable evidence to support this claim. Furthermore, many of these products contain ingredients that have not been tested in combination with each other and their combined effects are unknown. Therefore, it is important to consult with your healthcare provider before taking any dietary supplement for weight loss.