Best weight loss supplements

We continually hear about the obesity epidemic raging across the country. 65% of adults in America are overweight, while 31% of those are classified as “obese”. That word is only a label, not the whole person. Nevertheless, carrying too much weight puts us at risk for a wide range of chronic diseases.

On hearing about these risks, our first response might be to cut our calories by dieting. However, scientists have found this kind of dieting to be a bad idea. It triggers an ancient response in our bodies called “feast or famine”. When ancient people were short of food, their bodies would store more of what they ate as fat. Now those times are long gone, but that inherited response is still in us, and trying to cut calories makes us put on weight even faster than before.

A far better approach is lifestyle change. Instead of short-term dieting, what we need is a long-term change in how we eat. For instance, before eating, we can drink some water to “wake up” our digestive system and help us feel full faster. Between meals, nuts can help cut hunger better than sugary snacks.

In addition to those changes, weight loss supplements can help support our efforts in a number of ways. Some of the most useful supplements are listed here.


usually thought of in connection with bone health, likely also assists our bodies in weight loss. Research finds that higher calcium intake seems to go along with lower body fat, and lower intake correlates with higher body fat. The increase of calcium intake that reduces fat in the studies is 300 mg per day.


or more specifically capsaicin, the active ingredient in cayenne, appears to help us lose weight in two ways. First it suppresses our appetite, so we eat less. Second, it speeds up our metabolism of fats from our food. Faster burning of the fats we eat can help us prevent them from winding up in fat deposits where they tend to stay.


in the form of chromium picolinate, seems to reduce our body’s fat content, at the same time it increases our lean muscle mass and leads to weight loss. Women especially benefit from this effect. When overweight people take 200-400 micrograms (not milligrams) per day, they develop a higher body mass and lower body fat, even when they are not dieting. Chromium may also prevent us from losing lean muscle when on low-calorie diets.


in the form of whole-grain foods may help us achieve a lower weight than foods made with refined grains, especially when eaten as part of a low-calorie diet. This change is just one of many beneficial effects fiber creates for us, which seem to work synergistically.


extracted from the seeds of the African Griffonia simplicifolia, 5-HTP seems to help us to reduce our food cravings by raising our serotonin neurotransmitter levels. Serotonin normally goes down when we diet, triggering binge eating, and is perhaps part of the reason for the “feast or famine” phenomenon. Taking 5-HTP assists us in achieving significant weight loss, as well as reducing our carbohydrate intake and helping us feel satisfied with smaller portions. One caution: we should avoid 5-HTP if on antidepressants, and always consult our doctors first.

Green tea

contains fat-burning phenols that increase our metabolism and make us burn energy faster. In healthy young men, green tea increased the energy burn rate and fat oxidation. Moderately overweight people also experience weight loss of almost 5% in three months. Green tea may be acting as an appetite suppressant, according to some studies.

Omega-3 fatty acids

can be useful even though they don’t directly help with weight loss. They do help us improve our glucose and insulin metabolism and lower our cholesterol. As a result, omega-3s help to eliminate two of the most pernicious side effects of being overweight – diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

As part of a healthy revamp of our lifestyles, weight loss supplements can provide just the extra support we need to get over the weight loss hump and beyond. Things that seemed hard can become easier, and health problems can subside or even disappear as we lose weight. With the right research and the right supplements and other lifestyle changes, we can look forward to a brighter, healthier future.