Obesity is an epidemic many Americans and other nations across the globe are facing today. Research on obesity and weight control indicates that in the United States alone, more than one third or 36.5% of adults are clinically obese and another 32.5% of adults in the U.S are overweight. Unfortunately, these numbers are on the rise, and these statistics come with hefty costs and risky complications.
There are many reasons why people gain a drastic amount of weight and struggle to avoid becoming clinically obese. Aggressive product marketing, lifestyle, personal choices, and genes have a lot to do with these frightening statistics.
But the good news is that with a few lifestyle changes and the help of natural supplements, healthy weight loss is possible. By losing weight, even just a modest amount, can improve your overall health and prevent some of the risks associated with obesity.
Here are 4 science-backed supplements that can help with weight loss and overall health.
What Defines Obesity?
In order to beat any epidemic, we must know the true facts and causes. Misconceptions and myths only feed the pandemic. Obesity doesn’t always look like that person who is confined to a mobility scooter. In fact, there is a very fine line between being overweight and being obese. The condition is diagnosed based on the body mass index (BMI). The body mass index is used to provide a rough estimate of body fat in relation to height. A BMI of 30 or higher is clinically diagnosed as obesity. To calculate your own BMI, divide your weight (pounds) by your height (inches squared).
It’s important to also know that BMI does not just measure body fat alone. Some muscular athletes may have a BMI of over 30, which is nothing to be concerned about if there is no excess body fat.
Your doctor may prescribe more in-depth tests to confirm the diagnosis such as waist to hip comparisons, skinfold thickness, ultrasound, or MRI scans.
Who Is At Risk?
Another misconception about weight gain and obesity is that it is a conscious choice made by the individual. This is not always true. Just because someone is overweight does not mean that they are lazy or eat every hour of the day. Many many other factors can put an individual at risk of developing obesity including:
- Genetics and age – the genes that you may have inherited from your parents is a common factor behind fat storage and how it is distributed within the body. Genetics are responsible for how efficiently your body regulates metabolism, converts foods into energy, and how it burns calories during physical activity. Obesity runs in families mainly due to genetics, but can also be ‘inherited’ because of the similar diet and lifestyle habits they share. You can develop obesity at any age. Obesity is becoming more prevalent in children, but mature adults are also at risk. As muscle mass starts to decrease, so does the metabolism, which makes it harder to shed excess weight.
- Personal choices – Poor lifestyle choices and activity levels can put you at risk of developing obesity. Oversized portions with no physical activity cause the body to store more calories and fats, seeing that it doesn’t need much energy to fulfill physical tasks. Liquid calories are also a silent killer because many people can drink a lot of them without ever feeling full, especially alcohol. Other caloric beverages like soft drinks, sweetened coffee, and meal replacement shakes can also lead to significant weight gain.
- Medications and pre-existing conditions – some medical conditions can lead to excessive weight gains such as Cushing Syndrome and Prader-Willi Syndrome. Conditions like arthritis limit mobility, which can also cause a surge in body fat. Some medications like anti-seizure medications, antidepressants, antipsychotic medications, and diabetes medications can also lead to weight gain if you do not compensate with a healthy diet and moderate exercise regularly.
The Risks Associated With Excessive Weight Gain
People who are overweight or suffer from obesity have a higher risk of developing potentially life-threatening medical conditions, which includes:
- Type 2 diabetes
- Sleep apnea
- Sexual problems
- Digestive disorders
- Certain cancers (breast, ovary, rectum, pancreas, kidney, cervix, and prostate)
- High cholesterol
- Gallbladder disease
- Fatty liver disease
- Heart disease
How To Prevent Obesity
Whether you have been diagnosed with obesity or struggle to manage and control your weight, there are a few changes you can make to prevent unhealthy weight gain and future health risks. With a little motivation and a positive mindset, it is possible to bring your weight back down to a healthy number.
Regular exercise – engaging in physical activity can help prevent weight gain. About 150 to 350 minutes of moderately intense exercise per week is enough to get your heart working and the calories burning. Swimming, walking, or cycling are great forms of physical activity that help build muscle and burn fat.
Healthy diet – it may be tough at first but once you start making wise food choices, it becomes a habit you won’t want to kick. Choose nutrient-dense, low-calorie foods such as fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Avoid any saturated fats, sugar, and alcohol.
Monitor – keep tabs on your progress by monitoring your weight. This will tell you whether or not the changes you have made are working and it can help you identify any weight gain before it gets out of control again. Don’t forget to congratulate yourself on the hard work you have put in!
Helping hand – Natural supplements are a wonderful tool that can help boost overall health, suppress your appetite, and increase fat burning. Together with a healthy diet and exercise, a good quality supplement can help to keep your weight under control and improve your quality of life, without experiencing negative side effects.
Natural Supplements For Weight Loss, Reviewed By Science
There are numerous weight loss supplements on the market. Some of which claim to deliver magical results, and others that are specifically designed to aid weight loss while following a healthy lifestyle. Rather than buying into exaggerated claims, look for natural supplements that have been well formulated and have the research to back up their claims.
Here are the most popular weight loss supplements that can help you combat fat and prevent the risks associated with obesity.
Garcinia Cambogia Extract
Garcinia Cambogia, which is also commonly known as Brindleberry or Garcinia gummi-gutta, is a small pumpkin-shaped fruit that originates from tropical locations in Central Africa, India, and Southeast Asia. The fruit is typically used in curry dishes because of its sour flavor profile, but in recent years, studies have found that Garcinia Cambogia is an effective tool for weight loss and managing other health conditions like depression and high cholesterol levels.
The rind of the Garcinia Cambogia fruit holds the secret to its weight loss abilities – a potent citric acid known as Hydroxycitric Acid (HCA).
How Does Garcinia Cambogia Aid Weight Loss?
There are two ways that the HCA content in Garcinia Cambogia can help combat fat:
Inhibits Fat Production
The pumpkin-shaped tropical fruit has stolen the weight loss limelight because of its effects on the production of fatty acids and blood fats. Both animal and human studies reveal that Garcinia Cambogia helps to decrease elevated levels of triglycerides within the body and also has a significant impact on limiting the release of oxidative stress in the plasma and liver.
Research on obesity and weight control also indicates that the HCA content found in Garcinia Cambogia improves common risk factors associated with excessive weight gain. The study observed individuals who were moderately obese and were following an eight-week course of Garcinia Cambogia the results revealed that:
- LDL cholesterol levels were reduced by a staggering 12.3%
- HDL cholesterol levels were increased by 10.7%
- 125 to 258% more fat metabolites were excreted via the urine
- Total blood triglyceride levels were reduced by 8.6%
It is believed that one of the main reasons Garcinia Cambogia is effective for weight loss is because it inhibits the activity of ATP citrate lyase, an enzyme responsible for carbohydrate metabolism and fatty acid biosynthesis. The enzyme signals the body to store or convert carbohydrates into energy, but due to the biological activity of HCA, it inhibits the enzyme from storing carbohydrates as fat.
Another way Garcinia Cambogia proves to be an effective tool for weight loss is that it helps to suppress the appetite. In both animal and human studies, the active ingredient found in this exotic fruit helps to increase serotonin levels in the brain. Serotonin, also known as the happy hormone is known to suppress the appetite by curbing cravings and promoting satiety even if you haven’t eaten much.
Other Benefits Of Garcinia Cambogia
Besides weight loss, Garcinia Cambogia also delivers a wide range of benefits that can help improve common risk factors associated with weight gain and obesity including:
- Reducing chronic inflammation
- Decreasing blood insulin levels
- Decreasing leptin levels
- Improving insulin sensitivity
- Improving blood sugar levels
- Reducing cortisol levels
Research also shows that Garcinia Cambogia helps to improve digestive health by protecting it against gastric ulcers and preventing damage to the lining of the digestive tract.
Are There Side Effects?
Provided that you choose a reputable manufacturer that uses high-quality sources of ingredients, Garcinia Cambogia is safe to use between 500 to 1600 mg daily. Side effects are associated with high doses of 2600mg and above can lead to nausea, headaches, and digestive discomfort. It is important to follow manufacturer instructions and to look for concentrations that don’t exceed more than 1600mg per day.
An FDA recognized, and cGMP approved supplement like Garcinia MD delivers a 95% concentration of Hydroxycitric Acid at a daily dosage of 1600mg. The product also has additional potassium to increase absorption and enhance the positive effects of the Garcinia Cambogia.
Another helpful tool in weight loss is Raspberry Ketones. Not to be mistaken with exogenous ketones, Raspberry Ketones are the succulent berry’s best-kept secret. The ketones found in raspberries are what give them their potent smell. Small traces can also be found in other natural foods like blackberries, kiwis, and cranberries.
For decades, the Raspberry Ketones molecule has been extracted from the berry and used to make berry flavored candy and as well as scented candles and soaps, but today, more and more supplements are using the unique molecule to help speed up weight loss results and burn off body fat.
Raspberry Ketones have a very similar molecular structure to capsaicin – an active ingredient in chili peppers that is known for anti-inflammation and anti-diabetic properties; and synephrine – an alkaloid found in the peels of citrus fruits which is commonly used in the weight loss industry. Raspberry Ketones deliver the same beneficial properties as these two molecules and more:
How Do Raspberry Ketones Aid Weight Loss?
Studies show that Raspberry Ketones help to boost metabolism and increase the breakdown of fat by making cells more responsive to norepinephrine, a fat-burning hormone. Another study also showed that the main reason Raspberry Ketones help to promote weight loss is because they accelerate the release of adiponectin. Adiponectin is a protein hormone that is responsible for the breakdown of fatty acids and regulating glucose in the blood. Research on obesity and weight control indicates individuals who are a healthy weight have higher levels of adiponectin compared to those who are overweight. This research suggests that individuals who have lower adiponectin levels have an increased risk of developing heart disease, fatty liver disease, type two diabetes, and obesity.
Other Benefits Of Raspberry Ketones
A review published in the Journal of Medical Food observed that on a high-fat diet, Raspberry Ketones provided protective properties against liver inflammation caused by the buildup of fatty acids, also known as nonalcoholic steatohepatitis. Scientists confirmed that Raspberry Ketones provided dual function against liver inflammation as well as overall fat reduction.
Improves Insulin Resistance and Cholesterol
Insulin resistance and raised LDL cholesterol levels are common risks associated with weight gain and obesity. Raspberry ketones have been known to both improve insulin resistance and decrease LDL cholesterol levels by regulating a protein called Aquaporin-7, which plays an important role in transporting glycerol, water, and urea to the cell membranes as well as controlling triglyceride accumulation and fat cell size.
Are There Side Effects?
There are not any known side effects associated with Raspberry Ketones, however, depending on whether the ketones have been synthesized in a lab or naturally sourced from the berries themselves, it can cause the feeling of jitteriness, increase blood pressure, or rapid heartbeat. Naturally sourced Raspberry Ketones do not cause the same side effects because there are no added stimulants such as caffeine or synephrine.
High-quality Raspberry Ketone supplements like Raspberry Ketone MD have been clinically tested and approved by medical doctors and researchers. Raspberry Ketone MD only contains ketones that are extracted from real red raspberries to help accelerate adiponectin levels in a safe and natural way.
Made from the active compounds of the Indian coleus (Coleus forskohlii) plant, Forskolin has been used for its medicinal properties over the past few centuries. The tropical plant was used to improve general wellness and was also used for relief from breathing disorders such as asthma. After the weight loss properties were featured on a popular medical TV show, the popularity of this plant has grown substantially, and the results are extremely promising.
How Does Forskolin Aid Weight Loss?
Research on obesity and weight control indicates that Forskolin can help accelerate weight loss by activating specific enzymes in the body. These enzymes are known as adenylate cyclase and lipase. Adenylate cyclase is involved in various metabolic processes as well as the function and development of adipose tissue (fat). Lipases help to break down triglycerides into free fatty acids and are also responsible for the digestion of fat and lipid transport.
In one study, 30 obese and overweight patients experienced reduced insulin resistance, significant weight gain, and lowered blood cholesterol after taking Forskolin together with a low-calorie diet. This research also suggests that Forskolin can also help reduce the risk of metabolic syndrome in obese and overweight individuals.
Another study conducted on 23 overweight women showed that Forskolin extract helped to prevent additional weight gain without common side effects associated with weight loss supplements.
Forskolin also helps to enhance satiety and block key enzymes from producing fatty deposits and storing them after eating carbohydrate-dense foods.
Other Benefits Of Forskolin
As we mentioned before, Forskolin has been used for its medicinal properties long before we discovered it’s weight loss properties. The multitude of Forskolin benefits include:
- Reducing discomfort and pressure in the eye caused by glaucoma.
- Improved respiratory function, which helps to reduce the frequency and severity of asthma attacks.
- Speeding up wound healing by signaling cells to migrate towards the site of the wound.
- Relaxing muscles in the heart, which helps to reduce arrhythmia.
- Decreasing high blood sugar levels.
Are There Side Effects?
There have not been any reported side effects for doses between 100 to 500mg, however, taking stronger doses of Forskolin may lead to low blood pressure, headaches, and stinging in the eyes. Since Forskolin is known to increase levels of cytochrome P450, it may reduce the effectiveness of medications such as blood thinners (warfarin) and antidiabetics (tolbutamide). It’s best to speak to a doctor before taking Forskolin if you have pre-existing conditions.
If you are looking for a well researched and developed product that adheres to strict policies set forth by the FDA, Forskolin MD is the top-rated Forskolin product on the market today. The Forskolin is extracted directly from the plant root and standardized to contain a 20% concentration of Forskolin and does not contain any other synthetic or unregulated ingredients.
Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA)
There are some fats you want to avoid at all costs, and then there are others that have potent health benefits and are used primarily for energy. Conjugated Linoleic Acid is one of those beneficial fats. CLA is a derivative of the essential fatty acid linoleic acid (Omega 6) and is naturally found in dairy, meat, and vegetable oils. It has long been used for its medicinal properties which include limiting the growth of cancerous tumors, weight loss, and asthma.
How Does CLA Aid Weight Loss?
The mechanisms of CLA were first researched when scientists noticed that it could potentially help fight cancerous tumors in rats, since this discovery, CLA is one of the most researched supplements around the globe. What this means is that it’s weight loss properties have also been studied in-depth, and the results are extraordinary.
Research on obesity and weight control indicates that there are two ways CLA works to burn fat. Firstly, the fatty acid inhibits lipoprotein lipase from breaking down triglycerides and transporting them to various organs and molecules to be stored as fat.
The second function of CLA is that it reduces the accumulation of esters derived from glycerol known as triacylglycerols. The main function of triacylglycerols is to preserve energy for later use, which essentially is stored as fat when there is an excess of energy. CLA produces the same effect the body experiences during food shortages, forcing it to use triacylglycerols as energy instead of allowing them to be accumulated and stored. Research on obesity and weight control indicates that CLA is a promising weight-loss tool because of these specific mechanisms.
In one study, 60 overweight and obese volunteers were divided into groups and given a placebo and CLA over 12 weeks. The CLA group showed a much higher reduction in body fat mass compared to the placebo group.
Other Benefits Of CLA
CLA offers a wide range of benefits that those who suffer from excessive weight gain can benefit from like asthma relief for example.
While asthma may be quite prevalent in many people, there is a strong link between obesity and asthma in adults due to acute inflammation. One study found that overweight individuals who supplemented with CLA showed significant improvement of hyperresponsiveness in the airway. The study also showed that the same peers supplementing with CLA also had a significant reduction in weight and BMI.
A few other benefits of Conjugated Linoleic Acid include:
- Lower obesity-related hypertension and blood pressure.
- Improvement in HDL cholesterol levels.
- Increased immunity.
- Reduces the risk of osteoporosis by strengthening bones.
Are There Side Effects?
When taken in supplement form, CLA is safe, however, depending on the dosage, it could cause a few negative side effects such as gastric discomfort, fatigue, and nausea. As with any supplement, the dosage is always an important factor behind the potency and safety of a product.
A high-quality supplement like CLA MD delivers a safe and effective dose of 2000 mg of safflower CLA that is standardized to 85% for the best results.
Research On Obesity And Weight Control Indicates That…
Obesity comes with a lot of costs and risks, but if you are living with obesity or are genetically prone to excessive weight gain, there are ways to manage or prevent many of the health risks involved. Changing your eating habits, moderate exercise, healthier lifestyle changes, and helpful tools like natural supplements can help improve your quality of life overall. Just a 5 to 10% drop in weight can significantly reduce the risk of developing serious health conditions.