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New research finds no evidence that popular slimming supplements facilitate weight loss
Date:7/12/2010

Stockholm, Sweden: New research evaluating the effectiveness of a broad selection of popular slimming supplements sold in pharmacies and health food shops has found no evidence that any of them facilitate weight loss beyond the placebo effect.

Two studies presented today (Monday) at the International Congress on Obesity in Stockholm, Sweden, have found they were no more effective than the fake supplements they were compared with.

"There are scores of slimming supplements out there claiming weight-loss effects through all sorts of mechanisms of action. We have so-called fat magnets, mobilizers and dissolvers, as well as appetite tamers, metabolism boosters, carb blockers and so on. The market for these is huge, but unlike for regulated drugs, effectiveness does not have to be proven for these to be sold," said Dr. Thomas Ellrott, head of the Institute for Nutrition and Psychology at the University of Gttingen Medical School, Germany, who lead one of the studies. "Few of these supplements have been submitted to clinical trials and the landscape of products is always changing, so we need to put them through rigorous scientific evaluation to determine whether they have any benefit."

Ellrott's group tested nine popular supplements against placebo pills in a randomized controlled trial. The supplements tested included L-Carnitine, polyglucosamine, cabbage powder, guarana seed powder, bean extract, Konjac extract, fibre pills, sodium alginate formulations and selected plant extracts.

The researchers bought the supplements from German pharmacies, changed the packaging and product names to make them look neutral and rewrote the information leaflet inserts to eliminate the product name from the text. They then gave 189 obese or overweight middle-aged consumers packages of either fake pills or of one of the nine supplements, each week for eight weeks, in doses recommended by the manufacturers. Some of the products came with dietar
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Contact: Emma Ross
rosswrite@mac.com
International Association for the Study of Obesity
Source:Eurekalert

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