I’m going to do a series of short blogs on different diet pills and what they claim to do. They fall into different categories:
1) Fat binders/blockers;
2) Carb blockers;
3) Metabolism boosters;
4) Appetite suppressants;
5) Those that claim to do most of the above and then some!
This third blog is on the Metabolism Boosters:
Examples of products include: Pukka Herbs Weight Balance Organic Bio Nutrient. The blurb on this says “Weight Balance supports the body’s natural ability to maintain metabolism, digestion and a healthy weight. It contains fruits, grass juices, green freshwater plants, seeds, seaweeds and spices, all renowned for maintaining healthy weight naturally when taken as part of a balanced diet“. (Zoë comment – note that almost all of the blurb talks about ‘the product works as part of a balanced healthy diet. Some even mention exercise. More likely the healthy eating that will have an impact if any is noticed!)
Bio-synergy Skinny Cola: The blurb on this says: “A low-calorie Cola, enhanced with a unique combination of ingredients to help(YOU) lose and maintain YOUR weight. Skinny Cola contains selected nutrients, which combine the benefits of hydration with amino acids and minerals that suppress appetite, block carbohydrates from converting into fat, and increase fat burning.” (One of the nutrients is chromium – see below for better ways to get chromium). (I could have put this in the ‘claims to do everything category’)!
Napiers Kelp and Clivers – metabolism booster: The blurb on this says: “Contains herbs such as kelp and pokeroot, which may help to stimulate the metabolic rate and the breakdown of fat. Useful as part of a healthy weight loss plan. Simply put 5ml into a glass of water three times per day.”
Zoë comment: The best way to boost your metabolism is to go for a walk! The best way to boost your metabolism all the time is to get a dog and go for regular walks! (Do bicep curls as you are walking along for extra benefit). Seriously – the best determinant of metabolism is the lean tissue content in your body. Lean tissue needs more energy (calories) than fat tissue, so this is a key driver in determining your metabolism.
Basal Metabolic Rate – BMR – is the general measure used and this tells you the energy – calories – needed even if you were lying ill in bed and didn’t move for a whole day. It often surprises people that the energy needed when you are up and about is not massively more than this BMR. E.g. someone with a BMR of 1500 calories may only need 2000 on a ‘going to work’ day.
The good thing about diet pills that claim to boost metabolism is that the only harm they are likely to do is to your purse! They are almost always herb or vitamin based and some of the herbs and vitamins do have some benefit. However, they are better ingested in dietary form. So, you could just find out the food that naturally contains that substance (e.g. eggs are a good source of chromium) and have eggs for breakfast instead. If you want to go the supplement route – take a tablet rather than falling for any mad ‘delivery mechanism.’ The idea of drinking a cola drink as a source of chromium is (in my view) ridiculous!