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What are Weight Loss Supplements?

Many Americans struggle to lose excess flab the natural way. So about 15% of American adults opt to use weight loss supplements that claim to increase metabolism, block absorption of fat and decrease appetite. But, most health experts do not recommend most of these supplements because conclusive evidence about their effectiveness is lacking. In fact, certain supplements like ephedra can cause health problems like stroke and heart attack. Ephedra, also called ma huang, was therefore banned for sale in the US in 2004. In this article, we look at a few weight loss products that boast some evidence that they are effective. 

<strong>Weight Loss Supplements</strong>

<strong>Calcium</strong>
Calcium not only improves bone health but can also help to lose fat and preserve muscle. Research reveals that calcium supplements can help to lose weight by influencing the breakdown of fat and its storage in the body. 

<strong>Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA)</strong>
This is actually a type of fat which is found in red meat and dairy products. Some research studies have proved that CLA supplements help to lose fat. But there can be some adverse effects too such as inflammation and impacted cholesterol levels. So, get your doctor’s permission before starting to use CLA weight loss supplements. 

<strong>Fiber</strong>
This nutrient can help you feel full for longer and thus help to curb appetite. Research also backs this fact up as obese and overweight people who consumed a fiber supplement daily during a study reported reduced hunger after eating meals. But you also need to drink lots of water along with increased fiber intake to avoid constipation. 

<strong>Green Tea Extract</strong>
Many people know green tea contains healthy antioxidants, and it helps to shed flab too. It contains the components theanine, caffeine and catechins that can help to reduce body weight. But decaf green tea is probably not as effective. A recent study suggests that green tea extract weight loss supplements can help obese people shed weight and keep it off too. Another important benefit is they can help to lose harmful belly fat. Also, green tea extract can help to reduce blood pressure and bad cholesterol. 

<strong>Meal Replacements</strong>
These weight loss supplements like shakes and bars have a wealth of evidence to prove their worth. They are effective when you substitute breakfast and lunch with calorie-conscious meal replacements and then consume a moderate amount of light dinner that is not more than 500 calories. Health experts say meal replacements are safe, efficient and effective in the long run. Besides you can enjoy a healthy and nutritious dinner too, though in controlled portions. 

<strong>Over-the-Counter Orlistat (Alli)</strong>
This over-the-counter medication is a proven winner and can block 25% of the fat calories consumed from getting absorbed. Orlistat can help to shed weight if you also adopt a healthy diet and work out regularly. But while taking Orlistat, you need to limit fat consumption to avoid gas and anal leakage. 

<strong>Summary</strong>
Most weight loss supplements do not have FDA regulation. So to be assured of quality, buy only products that have a United States Pharmacopeia (USP) seal. Avoid caffeine-laden products as they can raise blood pressure and heart rate. Most importantly take your doctor’s advice before starting to use weight loss supplements regularly. 

<strong>Resource:</strong> http://www.webmd.com/vitamins-and-supplements/lifestyle-guide-11/diet-weight-loss-supplements?page=1

For more information on weight loss supplements, please watch this video:
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