Last year everyone was turning to these trendy little berries to help them lose weight. Then came the FTC crackdown on all the shady operators and many of the acai berry suplements went bye-bye. Now there are actual products being sold for weight loss, and narry a berry in sight. What is in these new products, and do they actually work? Read on.....

Weight loss is the focus of our national attention, at least when we’re not thinking about the economy or those globs of black goo floating about the Gulf. Even the first lady Michelle Obama has been concentrating on childhood obesity of late. The problem for many is that losing weight takes time; in many cases too much time. We are an instant gratification society and want something that works right now, weather that is weight loss, learning a new language, or getting us the inside track at a better job. Making something as difficult as weight loss a bit easier wouldn’t be a bad idea either.

That being said, many people naturally tend to turn to supplements to help them lose weight. Weather they turn to natural supplements is a different question entirely. People want a weigh loss supplement that works, and is safe. According to market research firm Packaged Facts, the nutritional supplement industry is a roughly $5 billion industry in the U.S. alone. That’s a lot of weight loss pills passing over the counters every year at your local GNC and Vitamin Shoppe stores. Furthermore, in 2009 Marketdata Inc. reports that Americans spent a staggering $58 billion on trying to lose weight.

If that much money is being spent it means only two things. Too many Americans have a weight problem, and they are not afraid to spend money to make it go away. The problem is that too much of that money is being spent on product that don’t work, and many people actually do lose the weight, only to gain it all back again.

People want a weight loss supplement that works and they are willing to pay for one, provided it really does do the job, and won’t cause more health problems than it solves. Be aware that some weight loss supplements have proven to be extremely effective, but were not healthy.

In fact, they caused so many serious health problems that they were pulled off the market by the FDA. The most famous of these are probably ephedra. Ephedra was in many popular weight loss supplements and fat burners, such as Muscle Tech’s Hydroxycut, Twin Lab’s Diet Fuel, and Met-Rx’s Thermocore, not to mention countless others. Many of these have been reformulated so they don’t contain the banned ingredients any longer, and are available once again.

Make no mistake though, changing nothing and taking a little pill every day is not going to make the weight magically go “Poof!” like so much spit on a July Phoenix sidewalk. You’ll have to actually do or change something (exercise or your diet), but those little supplement nuggets can give you a bit of a push to make things easier.

Here are some of the leading weight loss supplements that the market has voted as being worth taking. Please note that I have not personally tested any of these supplements, and all accounts of their efficacy are from third parties. Remember, just because the market has voted with their dollars does not mean the product will work for you. They may well do so, or the sales could be primarily due to some slick marketing techniques. That would never happen, would it? In any case, here are some of the leading weight loss supplements.

Liporexall can help some people lose weight, it is powerful, but it's not magic, eh...

Liporexall –

Liporexall is one of the most popular weight loss supplements to hit the market in some time. It’s claims are, to put it bluntly, a bit over the top. To wit they claim to be able to “block 28.3% of fat calories, build 700% more lean muscle, and increase weight loss by 900%. “ WOW! That’s some good stuff, Maynard! That could mean so many things. Did one person taking the stuff lose 9lbs, while someone not taking it lose only one? Who knows.

Liporexall has gotten much press recently due to it’s heart wrenching story about it’s inventor, an overweight (naturally) woman who works for a respected patent attorney, and the product’s 11 herbs and spices….. err, patented ingredients. . This gal was sick to death of being overweight and decided to do something about it. Unfortunately everything she tried ultimately failed. That’s when her boss lit a fire under her to go out there and develop something on her own by sifting through patent documents to discover ingredients that worked.

How Was Liporexall Really Invented?
Sounds plausible, right? Well, the Myth Busters are not on the case this time, but there do seem to be come problems with this account of Liporexall’s birth. First of all, if the ingredients were patented, she could not use them to make a commercial product without paying some sort of royalty to the patent holder, unless said holder was feeling extremely charitable.  Liporexall purports to have 11 (9 of which are for fat loss) such ingredients, which could turn into a legal, financial, and logistical nightmare for some poor woman working out of her basement. That doesn’t mean that the product fails to contain the products as advertised, but it probably means that a much larger (and better financed) entity was responsible for it’s creation. Ah, the wonders of creative marketing…..

The second is with her boss’s understanding of patents as they apply to a product’s efficacy. You can patent just about anything you want to, but nothing says the object of your patent has to perform as advertised. It only says that no one may make an identical product without paying you for it (or not ,if you do not want to sell the rights or receive royalties for it).

Just because this woman combined 11 patented ingredients together into a weight loss supplement does in no way mean that the product will perform as advertised. Of course it very well may, but the mere presence of such ingredients offers no guarantee. After all, are the products present in the proper combination and in sufficient quantities to cause you to lose weight? Have other people lost weight taking this supplement? Well,  Liporexall spouts on and on about the 11 patented ingredients, and the studies that support them, but few people ever take the time to look behind the curtain, and lift the veil of secrecy on any of this stuff.

Does the product contain this stuff?
Well without doing an actual chemical analysis, who can say for sure, but one could say the same thing about just about any product out there, right? Well, if we just take their ingredients list at face value, sure, they do actually contain all the ingredients. However, look at the quantities that Liporexall contains and compare that to the quantities of the same ingredients used in the studies that proved their effectiveness.

A bit of simple math can help us arrive at the answer. A standard Liporexall capsule contains 460mg of product. Is that enough to help you lose weight? That is an average of slightly more than 41mg per ingredient, per capsule, not including any fillers, moderators or any other ingredients that may or may not be present.

What is In Liproexall?
One of the most effective ingredients in Liporexall is Conjugated Linoleic Acid, more often called by it’s abbreviation, CLA. I’ve posted about this stuff before, and it really has been clinically proven to reduce body fat levels and help you lose weight. The problem is that the amount used in the clinical study was a wee bit more than 41mg. Actually, it was more than 460mg. The study, conducted by Leah D Whigham, Abigail C Watras and Dale A Schoeller at the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health used 3200mg doses.

That is not to say that you couldn’t achieve some success with smaller doses, but there have been 18 double blind studies done recently on the efficacy of CLA on  fat loss. 3,200 mg was the median amount used in the 18 studies. Even so, the amount of weight loss  for participants taking doses of CLA vs. a placebo in the study amounted to only .3kg per week. For those of us in the U.S., that’s about 2.6 pounds per month of fat lost due to taking CLA supplements.

Some of the 11 other ingredients used in Liporexall are a supercharged version of caffeine called Infinergy, 7-Keto®, Super Citrimax, ForsLean®, Advantgra-Z, PinnoThin™ , Phase 2® , NeOpuntia®, and ChromeMate®. As noted, if there were equal amounts of each ingredient in there, you’d get about 41mg per capsule. The problem arises because in most of the compounds that do have clinical weight loss studies to back them up, the quantities used in the study were far greater than 41mg. As for the others, well, I guess you take you chances. Speaking of chances, there is the chance that there is some synergistic effect exhibited with Liproexall, where the sum of the combination is greater than it’s individual component parts.

Are Liporexall’s descriptions full of crap?
The other problem is that some of the descriptions Liporexall uses for the weight loss compounds are pretty fanciful, if not completely different from any others I have ever seen. For example, here is their take on  ChromeMate®:
“(ChromeMate) helps regulate the amount of sugar in the blood. This helps limit the amount of sugar that you consume letting you eat the foods you love, while skimming the fattening agents out of them for you. This ultimately helps you lose more weight.”

What chromium picolinate (the actual ingredient in ChromeMate®) does is help regulate insulin efficiency. Chromate helps the transport of blood glucose across cell membranes, where it can do it’s work. No studies on chromium picolinate, and there have been many, indicate any propensity of the stuff to “skim out fattening agents” for you. What is a fattening agent anyway? Most foods in sufficient quantities are fattening agents, aren’t they? In any case, studies regarding the efficacy of CP for weight loss have been inconclusive at best.

There are some studies showing a positive correlation between taking chromium picolinate and weight loss. Other studies, however show no such link. For example, a 1995 double blind study by Trent and Thieding-Cancel compared weight loss in obese subjects taking chromium picolinate supplements against a similar group taking a placebo. The study found no evidence to support the claim that chromium picolinate had a positive effect on weight loss. Another study, this one in 1996 by Lukaski et al, examined weight training and chromium picolinate. In that study the researchers found that there was again, no evidence to support the claim that chromium picolinate helped reduce body fat and increase muscle mass.

What about Super Citrimax®, the super fat burning ingredient with the fancy graphic plastered on the front of their website? Well, that has been proven very effective at doing exactly what they say it does; burn fat from your body. A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled human clinical trial was conducted using Super CitriMax®, and the results were as you see them on Liporexall’s website,  pretty darn awesome!

So, what’s the rub? Again, the study used quantities far in excess of what you’ll find in Liporexall. Remember, each Liporexall capsule only contains 460mg of total, combined ingredients. The aforementioned study used 4,666mg of Super Citrimax®daily, divided into three equal doses. One third of 4,666mg is about 1,555mg, or more than 3 times the total amount of ingredients you’ll find in each capsule. Furthermore, the study found that 1,500mg (before each of the 3 primary meals) to be the optimum dose for burning fat and promoting weight loss.

It uses a double barreled approach, both decreasing appetite and increasing fat synthesis, which probably accounts for much of it’s effectiveness. However in the study, participants were on strictly controlled 2,000 calories daily diets, so the appetite suppressing qualities of the compound were not being used to their fullest for many participants.

All of the above being said,  many people really seem to stand by Liporexall. There are a ton of positive reviews out there on it from people who have lost substantial amounts of weight while using it. In addition, people keep on buying the stuff month after month, so they are either completely crazy, or they must be getting some positive results from it. The problem with the reviews is that, as with so much on the Internet, you can not tell if it all of the people are real, if they really obtained the results they claim, or what methodologies they used to lose the weight.

Apidexin

Apidexin is another weight loss supplement that has proved to be very popular recently. There are many glowing accounts of successful weight loss efforts using Apidexin, both on their own website (where you’d expect to find them) and on many other sites and forums.

Apidexin also contains a number of special patented or patent pending ingredients, although in this case, there are only 8, not nine of them. They claim a low, 2% of customers take them up on their no questions asked money back guarantee. If that is true, it speaks volumes about the effectiveness of their product, since at about $100 per month (retail, you can certainly find it cheaper), it is certainly not cheap, and you’d think if it did not work, people would be rushing to get their money back.

Shared Ingredients among Weight Loss Supplements?
The 8 ingredients bear a strong similarity to those of Liporexall. For example, Apidexin contains Infinergy the caffiene-malic acid bond DiCaffeine Malate, which is one of the ingredients in Liporexall. You’ll also find ForsLean®, which is another of the ingredients found in Liporexall. ForsLean® is derived from the root of a member of the lavender family, Coleus forskohlii, and is patented due to it’s ability to promote lean muscle growth. Does it work to reduce fat also?

Well, I’ve never taken it, but a team of researchers at Baylor University in Texas actually did a study (published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, back in 2005) in which overweight women received either a placebo or two doses of ForsLean® each day. Here is some of what they discovered.

“The results suggest that CF does not appear to promote weight loss but may help mitigate weight gain in overweight females with apparently no clinically significant side effects,” The researchers did note however, that the test subjects decreased their food intake while taking the ForsLean® compound., which could lead to weight loss. The scientists were of the opinion that while ForsLean® may not be a powerful compound for losing weight, it did show some promise in helping to keep weight off after losing it.

Another ingredient in Apidexin is Razberi-K (4-(4-hydroxyphenyl) butan-2-one ), which is derived from, amazingly enough, the raspberry plant. Who would have guessed?  It is actually a ketone found only in that specific plant. Razberi-K is claimed to have strong fat loss enhancing properties. It promotes  HSL (hormone-sensitive lipase) trans-location to within the fat cell which helps fat metabolism by breaking down fat molecules into fatty acids. Like some of the other ingredients, it has been studied, although not to death. In 2005 a Japanese study by Morimoto et al entitled “Anti Obese Action by Rasberry Ketone” demonstrated  that “RK prevents and improves obesity and fatty liver” It’s secret appears to be partially explained by the fact that it is very similar to capsicum, a pepper derived substance found to help burn fat through increased thermogenisis.

Other ingredients found in Apidexin include Japanese Wakame seaweed , Guggul EZ 100, and Thermodiamine.

There are some very positive reviews on Amazon. But on the whole, results seem to mixed, if skewed a bit toward the positive. Click here to read Amazon customer reviews on Apidexin.

Are there weight loss supplements that actually work? Undoubtedly! Do they work for everyone? Probably not. Can they get expensive? Sure, especially if you take them for a long period of time. In addition, some people have reported side effects from taking these such supplements. Is it worth it? If you’ve tried everything else, and nothing has seemed to work to help you lose weight, it may not be a bad idea as a last resort. Try losing weight the conventional way first, because if you lose it with these supplements, chances are you’ll just gain it back when you stop taking them.

Have a great Independence Day weekend!