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Weight Loss Supplements: Do They Work
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What Are Weight Loss Supplements?
Do They Work?

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In addition to prescription weight loss drugs, there are a growing number of weight loss or diet supplements that are sold over the counter to assist weight control. These weight loss pills are not regulated by the FDA in the same way as drugs.

According to the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act (DSHEA) of 1994, weight loss supplements do not need FDA approval (unless they contain a new ingredient, which must then be reviewed by the FDA). Instead, the makers of the supplements are responsible for ensuring the safety and effectiveness of their weight loss pills. In addition, they are responsible for disclosing all side-effects and health problems of the weight loss pills.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and a number of state attorneys general have successfully brought cases against marketers of weight loss supplements that claim to absorb or burn fat. In addition, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has banned 111 ingredients once found in over-the-counter weight loss supplements.

Do Weight Loss Supplements Work?

It's worth knowing that there are few (if any) healthy and effective supplements. Some weight loss supplements help control appetite, but they can have serious side effects. Other weight loss supplements are highly addictive and can have adverse effects on the heart and central nervous system, while some weight loss supplements do nothing at all.

When checking out weight loss supplements, read the claims and literature carefully. One product manufacturer, who claimed his supplements were very beneficial for weight loss, also encouraged users to exercise for 20 to 60 minutes five to seven days a week; eat three low-fat, balanced meals and two snacks every day; eat at least two servings of fruit and three servings of vegetable each day; drink six to eight glasses of water every day; limit or stop drinking alcohol; stop eating two to three hours before bedtime; reach for the walking shoes before reaching for the refrigerator...etc.

Since all this virtually guarantees weight loss and long term weight control, what is the point of buying the weight loss supplements?

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