Natural Remedies for Losing Weight -- The Brain/Mind This might seem like an usual idea, losing weight using the brain/mind -- but if you stop to think about it -- it makes perfect sense. Where do all your thoughts come from? You decision making abilities? Your fears, joys, etc? The brain/mind. It's far more powerful than many give it credit for and sadly underestimated as well. Let's think about this idea a bit more -- the brain as a natural remedy for losing weight. Not only is it immediately at your disposal, it is free. It's always available and can perform amazing feats when given the chance. You've heard and read about the power of positive thinking, about affirmations and meditation. They work, so why wouldn't being positive about your weight loss journey? How difficult would it be to re-tool thinking patterns about food, diets, lifestyle changes and exercising? It might take quite a long time, but if the motivation is there, and the will and drive to succeed, it would make a winning combination. Granted there are exceptions to every rule, and there no doubt would be people who are genetically disposed to weight gain, those who have medical reasons they cannot lose weight, and still others who just don't want to lose weight for their own reasons. In the final analysis, using your mind/brain connection in combination with a change in eating habits, increased exercise, smaller portions, and weight loss support groups certainly won't hurt you. In fact, it may teach you about a whole other side to how powerful your mind/brain can really be. It won't give you side effects either. That is the key to the weight loss industry, it prays on our mind and our fears about being overweight. It sends subtle negative messages that tell you to rely on drugs for a solution you really have control over. The hundreds of weight loss remedies mostly suggest you cannot lose weight without this herb or that fat burner. A few will mention in small print that you should change your lifestyle in addition to using their products, but let's face it, how many people actually take the time to read the small print. With a little planning, a powerful urge to succeed in losing weight, a positive mind/brain approach to the changes you need to make and support and hard work -- you WILL make it, there is no doubt about it. Natural Remedies for Losing Weight - The Cross Training Support Program The Cross Training Support Program is rather unique in that it advocates that weight loss can be helped with Aromatherapy, Herbal Medicine, Acupuncture, Exercise, Nutrition and Lifestyle Changes, Crystals and/or Homeopathy. In other words, complementary therapies are the cross training. As with all plans to lose weight, you will still need to eat less and exercise more. Consume less sugar, simple carbohydrates and saturated fats. It's just as basic as that. No matter what other supplements or capsules you take, the bottom line is still you have to work to get it off. At the root of obesity is a physiological and psychological problem. It seems about 66% of adults in the USA are overweight or obese. It that isn't scary enough, about 25 million young people are either overweight or on the brink of becoming so. What does cross training suggest you do? They offer a 12 step program if you will that covers all the natural remedies for losing weight. The first is think of your weight loss as a lifestyle change, not a diet. Don't count calories (that's a radical one), just replace high fat content with low fat content. Eat low on the sugar index, to avoid highs and lows in your blood sugar that can lead to increased insulin production and conversion of calories to fat. Don't drink - it's fattening. Exercise, no way around it. Drink lots of water. Eat more frequently during the day. Take vitamins. Cut back on meat products. Reduce your portions. Believe in yourself and what you are doing. Sleep well. Overcome fears. The 12-step cross training program for losing weight isn't anything we haven't heard before. It doesn't offer lotions, potions or pills. It offers a plain old reasonable common sense natural remedy for losing weight. Are you up to the challenge? Natural Remedies for Losing Weight - Colon Cleansing You might never have thought about this before - about why you have a stomach pooch (aka protruding belly), powerful food cravings or Candida infection. And it's likely you haven't thought about this because no one really takes the time to discuss it openly. No one discusses constipation, irritable bowel syndrome, flatulence and bloating, unless it's with their Doctor. And for sure you would not know that internal cleansing may lighten your load considerably. Imagine losing up to 40 pounds by just cleansing your colon and other internal organs. Hard to imagine? Try looking at it this way. Everyday you clean your teeth and take a shower or bath. Why wouldn't you also take care of business inside? The colon is well known to be the sewer system of the body and would distinctly benefit from a good cleansing. Just how do you know if you are having toxic waste problems? If you are suffering from (among other things) frequent fatigue and low energy, chronic constipation, gas and bloating, bad digestion and excess weight, it's time for a colon-cleansing program. There's a method to detoxify your body that starts with using specific herbs to clean your colon of all toxic plaque, parasites (yes, parasites that live in our bowels normally) and other debris. While doing this, you will also have to replace good bacteria that protects the flora balance in your intestines. This is a vital part of a healthy immune system. Step three in your cleansing and weight loss program would once again use herbs to detox your whole body. There are over 100 different herbs used in programs like this and can include things like psyllium husks, flax seed, fennel seed, licorice root and slippery elm bark. Most colon cleansing programs usually come with a three-month supply of their product that definitely needs to be taken in the recommended order as detailed on the package. If you want to lose weight with this method, you have to realize that toxins have been building in your body for years thanks to poor diets and lifestyles. You will need to make other lifestyle changes for a continued weight loss, such as change your diet to healthy foods and increase your exercise levels. Losing weight can be done without the exercise, but it will take a lot longer to accomplish. Other colon cleansing programs are available that do not use herbs. In fact one actually uses oxygen to clean the bowels. It is usually regarded as a quick fix rather than a long-term program, but may work for people who prefer to take capsules and not make fiber shakes. The best thing to do if you want to lose weight by following a colon-cleansing program is to do your research and compare products. You'll find all the information you could possibly need on the Internet. You can also ask about these products at your local health food store. Natural Remedies for Losing Weight -- Aloe Normally when you think of aloe (which contains over 400 different species), you think of it being used for wound healing and things like burns. Aloe is actually added to herbal weight loss products for the main reason that it cleans you right out. It induces a strong cathartic response, which is why they also say on the labels it is an internal cleanser. One of the 400 species is Aloe Vera, and it is purported to have medicinal properties. Many cosmetics companies use aloe in their products and market them as skin rejuvenators. Aloe has been touted as a cure all for coughs, wounds, ulcers and gastritis as well as arthritis and immune system deficiencies when taken internally. Apparently the only actual substantiated internal use is as a laxative. Research on Aloe as a weight loss agent seems to consistently indicate it has no effect on weight loss despite its inclusion in over-the-counter natural remedies for losing weight. Many feel its inclusion is misleading to consumers. An internal cleanser, when not spelled out that it promotes strong bowel movements, can mean many things, including it cleans up your system and rids you of fats. Certainly it may lead to some minimal weight loss, due to the time spent recycling the product. However, the real weight loss would come with a change in your diet and exercise program. Aloe evidently also has some rather disturbing side effects -- abdominal cramping, diarrhea, electrolyte disturbances, and decreases in potassium. It is also recommended you do not take aloe in combination with medications such as digoxin or diuretics. The choice is yours and you can decide whether or not you want to try Aloe after you have read all you can about it. Most definitely it is being promoted as being effective in weight loss and not just because it causes diarrhea. It is said to reduce and stabilize body mass index by stimulating the metabolic rate in liver cells causing us to burn more energy. The other point about Aloe is that is has a high collagen protein content. Meaning, using aloe vera as a supplement in your diet would increase protein intake. The body spends more time trying to digest proteins and spends more energy doing that -- thus it burns fat. It's baffling, but as always, talk to your Doctor. Natural Remedies for Losing Weight -- St. John's Wort While there are definitely any number of natural remedies for losing weight on the market, the question really becomes how effective are they and how safe are they. The answers to both of those questions would need to be researched carefully before you made any decisions. One thing to also remember, if you happen to be morbidly obese, many of these natural remedies for losing weight are likely not for you. As with any weight loss venture, you need to make sure you talk to your Doctor before you start any program. One rather controversial herbal product that has a history of actually being used as an anti-depressant, seems to also be another contender in the weight loss arena. St. John's Wort, also called Hypericum, Klamath Weed, or Goat Weed, has been used for centuries to treat nerve pain, mental disorders, malaria, insect bites, wounds and burns. Amazingly, there are over 370 species of the genus Hypericum worldwide. It was also used by Native American as an anti-inflammatory, antiseptic and astringent. In the twentieth century St. John's Wort (named for its traditional flowering and harvesting on St. John's day, June 24th) has more commonly been used to treat depression, anxiety, and/or sleep disorders. The part of the plant used to make preparations is the top of the little yellow flower and is usually used to makes teas and tablets. How does St John's Wort help you lose weight? That's the funny part -- it does and it doesn't. It seems the herbal remedy itself does not help you lose weight. However, how it makes you feel by improving how you feel about yourself, does cause you to lose weight. Being in a better frame of mind may cause people to eat less. Bottom line is any change in your eating habits after taking St. John's Wort will have more to do with any psychological improvements and not the herbal remedy. Here's the most interesting thing though, there are natural remedies for losing weight on the market that feature St. John's Wort as the main active ingredient. The way it's presented implies St. John's Wort is the key proponent to your anticipated weight loss. It isn't, and this is a misrepresentation. So once again, do your research before you start taking any natural remedies for losing weight. Also, pay attention to any side-effects that may result from the herbal remedy you are considering. Natural Remedies for Losing Weight -- 5-hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP) Another natural remedy for losing weight that has raised a few eyebrows is a substance called 5-hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP). In fact, its been called into question for its safety record. 5-HTP actually replaced tryptophan supplements banned due to its link to a rare and potentially deadly blood disorder. Also, there has been a difference of opinion on whether or not it is actually a viable substance for achieving weight loss. Now, having said that, 5-HTP is found in some over-the-counter natural remedies for losing weight. 5-HTP is used to make serotonin for normal nerve and brain function. Lack of it affects sleep, emotional moods, pain control, inflammation, intestinal peristalsis (acts as a stimulant), and other body functions. It's found in the cells of the brain(acts as a neurotransmitter speeding nerve impulses between synapses) and intestine and in platelets in our blood. When walls of blood vessels are damaged, serotonin is released from platelets to constrict the vessel and prevent hemorrhage. The human body doesn't make a lot of this. 5-HTP is derived from the seeds of a West African plant called Griffonia simplicifoli. Dieters who use this product claim it helps suppress appetite, and helps promote weight loss. Initial research says 5-HTP is noted for its ability to reduce appetite by stimulating serotonin production in the brain. Clinical trials have appetite reduction and weight loss (averaging 11 pounds in 12 weeks) with 600 to 900 mg daily. Trials using 5-HTP did show that some people taking large amounts of 5-HTP had nausea, headaches, sleepiness, muscle pain, or anxiety. With this natural remedy for losing weight, and others as well, you must change your eating habits and increase exercise. It will not work all that well just on its own. In addition, if you happen to be pregnant or nursing, check with a Doctor, as there is no research in this area to indicate whether it is safe to take this substance under these circumstances. Try not to get taken in with the common belief that if it is natural, it won't hurt you. Nothing could be further from the truth. Get as much information as you can before you decide to try anything. Natural Weight Loss Remedies -- Thermocerin Frustrated with your weight? Don't think that changing your diet and exercising is going to really cut it? Turns out you're not alone. Literally thousands of people are trying to find natural weight loss remedies to trim down. Being over weight, now regarded by many as a medical condition, is actually something YOU can cure. With a little help, you may be able to kick start your weight loss program with the natural weight loss remedy Thermocerin. Going into this you already likely know there is no such thing as a miracle solution. Hard work is the key, after all you likely did not put the weight on over night, so it isn't going to come off over night either. But, there's actually more to it -- a reason your body objects to losing weight -- biochemical and biological reasons. In short form, your fat cells are working against you. The first thing you do when you go on a diet is reduce your caloric intake. That makes your body panic, and it starts thinking you're starving it. So instead of going WITH the program, they store the fat for later, just in case. How annoying. This reaction is caused by fat receptors. They want to go into hoard mode. So you need to find a way to turn the fat receptors off and release fat into your bloodstream and burn it. The product Thermocerin claims that it teaches your body thermogenesis -- tells your fat cells to shut up and get on the same page towards weight loss, not retention. Thermogenesis means your body produces heat or energy through a chemical reaction. The more energy produced, the higher your metabolic rate and the more fat gets burned. So, if your metabolism is higher due to more energy being generated you are benefiting from the thermogenic effect -- the increased burn off of calories and fat. It also goes hunting to find stored fat and burns it out was well. So what's in Thermocerin? The short answer is polyphenols(plant chemicals creating pigment) from green and white tea plants plus Capsaicin (active component in chili peppers) and Yohimbe.(antioxidant properties). Will it work? Anecdotal evidence suggests it will, but with any product that has a combination of herbs in it, natural or not, you should make certain to do your research first. This is even more important if you happen to have an allergy to herbs. So make sure you read the fine print and look things up on the Internet. Natural Remedies for Losing Weight -- Glucomannan Everywhere you look you can find lots of advice on how to lose weight. Trouble is most people who want to lose it are in a hurry, despite it taking them a long time to actually put it on. It goes without saying that when battling weight problems it's a good idea to try and understand the possible behavioral, metabolic, hormonal or genetic factors underlying your weight problems. With all the information floating around, in books, magazines, online, and in herbal remedy books that promote herbs for weight loss you'd think you'd be able to find something that actually does work. Overall, there is really only one successful weight loss program that works for the largest number of people -- increase physical activity, cut calories and eat wholesome, nutritious foods. If you want to still try a natural remedy for losing weight, you certainly can. You just need to be aware that these remedies work best if combined with changing your lifestyle. Whatever natural remedy you are considering, check it carefully for side effects and precisely how it accomplishes the weight loss it claims it can deliver. If you are considering Glucomannan (derived from the root of of Amorphophallus Konjac) you'd want to know it's supposed to help you lose weight by delaying the absorption of glucose from the intestines. The working theory behind this product is that it binds with substances in the digestive tract to slow digestion and reduce the absorption of fat and carbohydrates. Since it absorbs a lot of water and swells in the stomach (forming a gelatinous mass), it gives you a feeling of fullness. Glucomannan is frequently used in supplements intended to promote weight loss. Evidently Glucomannan research does show it lowers cholesterol (total and LDL). But of course, you would like it to help you lose weight. And that also seems to be something it can help you with. The Glucomannan (an actual fiber) can physically take up space in your stomach and turn off your brain's hunger signals. If you take this prior to a meal, you will be eating less. By mixing Glucomannan fiber with foods you've eaten, you're lowering the glycemic index of those foods, because the fiber slows the absorption of carbohydrates from those foods. Thus weight loss occurs, slowly but surely. Be aware this product has been cited for causing esophageal obstruction and has been banned in several countries for this reason. Research Glucomannan before you try it, and get all the information you can before making a decision. Natural Remedies for Losing Weight -- Exiliss Research proved if you reduce your weight by just 10 per cent of your total weight you immediately benefit in a variety of ways. For instance, If you are overweight or obese, you increase your risk of heart disease, high cholesterol, stroke, hyper tension and Type 2 diabetes. Without carrying those extra life draining pounds, your body will thank you, and you will be a whole lot healthier for it too. A relative new comer to the natural remedy for weight loss field is Exiliss. It boasts of all natural ingredients that work together to burn fat, or fight excess fat. The ingredients are Hoodia Gordonii (a powerful appetite suppressant), Chromium Picolinate (a metabolism booster), Selenium (antioxidant to control free radicals), Calcium Citrate (your body absorbs this better than Calcium Carbonate), and Soy Isoflavones (help lower cholesterol and heart disease risk). There are more ingredients in this particular formula that also help you to lose weight -- Kola Nut, Guarana, Grapefruit, Chinese Ginseng, Gymnema, Chickweed, Almond Nut, and Bladderwrack. Quite the collection of herbals, but what are they supposed to do for you? Kola Nut and Guarana are natural caffeine sources. Ginseng is an energy booster. Gymnema reduces sugar cravings, Chickweed, a mild appetite suppressant, Almond Nut, healthy monounsaturated fats to promote weight loss, and Bladderwrack, iodine rich for healthy thyroid function and metabolism. Judging from the testimonials about this product, it does seem to work. However the real question is whether or not it is for you. This product is supposed to suppress your appetite, which will make you eat less. That's a start in the right direction of course, but even with a product like this, you will still have to make lifestyle changes and diet changes. Translation: no matter what you are doing, you will still need to eat less, exercise more and do something about the stressors that make you eat too much. Losing weight is not easy and you need to work at it. But, with the help of a natural weight loss product like Exiliss, you will lose those frustrating pounds and still get your required intake of vitamins, minerals and nutrients. Just do your product research before you opt in to buy any product for weight loss. Natural Remedies for Losing Weight - Yerba Mate Yerba Mate (Ilex paraguariensis) belongs to the holly family and is prepared by steeping dry leaves and twigs in hot water (the infusion is called Mate). Only slightly less potent than coffee, it appears to be easier on the stomach. Yerba Mate has a strong vegetal, herbal, and grassy flavour much like some varieties of green tea. Over the past few years, extracts of Yerba Mate have shown up in natural remedies for losing weight. Why? Because it contains over 250 natural compounds such as caffeine, theophylline and theobromine. These compounds stimulate the central nervous system, and are diuretics, causing the body to shed water. Caffeine, theophylline and theobromine suppress appetite, and boost metabolism. The question is if Yerba Mate contains these ingredients and they are then combined with other variations of stimulants, diuretics, fat burners and goodness knows what else, what kind of side effects are potentially lurking in the wings? Yerba Mate proponents insist this is one of those wonder herbals that can actually achieve your weight loss and leaner physique goals without having to do too much about exercise or changing how you eat. They say Yerba mate suppresses appetite, increases caloric burn rate, and increases urination, thereby reducing overall body water weight. Note they say overall body WATER weight. While losing water does mean you weigh less, it doesn't address the primary problem of over eating, not eating properly and not exercising. At best, it would seem this product may be more of a quick fix than a real weight loss product. Always check with a doctor about your weight loss goals and how you are going to achieve them. If you plan on using an herbal product like this, then make sure your Doctor knows what other medications you are taking in addition. It is better to be safe, and to do your homework, rather than just plunge into something you aren't really sure about. Natural Remedies for Losing Weight -- Pyruvate It seems we all Pyruvate present in our bodies, as it is formed during the digestion of carbohydrates and proteins. The claims for this natural remedy for losing weight are that it reduces fat, prevents the fat loss yo-yo effect, reduces cholesterol and increases endurance. All very beneficial things, if they actually come to pass. And now down to business, does this work or doesn't it? Again, you would definitely need to do your own research as there seems to be at least three difference answers to that question -- yes, no and maybe in some cases. Some say it works but only at high dosages (22 -- 28 grams daily when the recommended dose is 500 micrograms to 1 gram). Some studies show that 23 per cent of the people who participated actually lost weight as opposed to some claims of a 48 per cent weight loss (roughly 2 to 3 pounds, not significant). Now, on the other hand, another body of research says pyruvate does affect weight loss by burning fat and boosts energy. And this, good for high-end athletes and body builders, it kicks up the transport of glucose and protein into muscle cells and boosts exercise performance levels. Translation: helps them get toned and have more energy. Once again, the jury is out on whether Pyruvate is truly effective or not. One thing you can take to the bank is that Pyruvate can be found in red apples, cheese and red wine. That's not to say go out and stuff yourself with any or all of these foods. But it does indicate that small amounts may be just fine, where larger amounts may be problematic. In the final analysis, more study is needed to determine if Pyruvate's claims of decreasing appetite and helping you lose weight are actually valid. What is certain, is this product is highly touted as a natural remedy for losing weight. The decision is up to you. Weigh all the options with care. Natural Remedies for Losing Weight -- Leptoprin The bottom line with natural remedies for losing weight is that if you stop taking them, the weight comes back. You have not learned anything about how to properly lose weight and maintain your loss. You have tricked your body into perhaps losing some fat and likely some water -- but have not addressed the underlying causes as to why you may be overweight in the first place. If there actually were a diet pill that worked for the long term you can bet major drug companies would be selling them. They aren't! Leptoprin (Anorex) has Calcium Phosphate, Commiphora mukul extract, Garcinia cambogia (HCA 125mg), L-Tyrosine, Acetylsalicyclic acid -- 162.5mg, Dipotassium phosphate, Sodium phosphate, Disodium phosphate, Phosphatidyl choline, Scutellaria (root), Bupleurum (root), Epimedium (herb). You might be asking, as you should, why a diet product would have aspirin in it (something people on Coumadin dare not take). Leptoprin is something called a Stack. The ECA (ephedra, caffeine and aspirin) stack is supposedly a thermogenic product -- meaning it supposedly melts your fat away by boosting your metabolism. And while it may boost your metabolism, it is more than likely to give you a bad case of the jitters with two stimulants tag teamed together. It's like taking speed, as there is only a minimal difference between methamphetamine and ephedrine/ephedra. The side effects for a product like this are many -- irregular or accelerated heart beat, insomnia, elevated blood pressure, seizures etc. And yet these products are labeled all natural. This is misleading as people then think they are also harmless. Again, as with any natural remedies, read the labels, search for the names of the list ingredients on the Internet, check for drug interactions, talk to your Doctor and/or your Pharmacist. If you're considering taking something like this, it is better to be well informed, and have your Doctor know what you are doing. In the long run, you would best be served by a visit to your local Weight Watchers group and find out how they can help you with a truly natural weight loss program. Natural Remedies for Losing Weight -- Herbal Diuretics Hundreds upon hundreds of people have at one time or another struggled to lose weight. It's a really important issue for many since society places such value on being thin. Do you realize that over 300,000 people a month search the Internet using the term weight loss? Billions of dollars have been spent on weight loss and the weight loss industry is making money hand over fist. Oddly enough, even though there are all these natural remedies for losing weight on the market, obesity is on the rise. People and children are fatter than ever. The natural weight loss remedies gear themselves to people just like this -- praying on their dreams to be thinner, their frustration at not being able to lose and their confusion over what will or will not work for them. If you have ever read any of the labels for natural weight loss products, you'll likely realize more than half the ingredients have names you likely do not recognize. And most definitely you will not know how they interact with one another, and with any drugs you may be taking. That's the bad news. The good news is you can lose weight, but you need to do it the old fashioned way -- change your diet and get exercise. There is simply no way around that. Back to reading labels, and trying to figure out what is in the product you are looking at. Many of the over-the-counter weight loss products have a variety of herbal diuretics in them, and most of them are derived from caffeine (which is a stimulant). Some of them have juniper seeds (can cause renal failure), equistine (a neurotoxin -- can cause brain damage), horse tail or shave grass (convulsions/hyperactivity). There is also dandelion, hawthorn and green tea. By themselves, herbal diuretics don't provide enough water shedding to give you an effective water weight loss. And while not considered to be toxic (on their own) when mixed with a variety of other compounds they can have serious interactions with drugs you may be taking already to achieve weight loss (like Lasix). In addition if you are on lithium or digoxin herbal diuretics have a history of interacting with these medications. Herbal diuretics trick you into thinking you are getting thinner. You're not. You are merely losing water weight. If you take these kinds of products too long, the loss of water will leach sodium and potassium from your body. The best method to achieve the same effect is drink lots of purified water. You'll lose excess water weight, hydrate your skin, and get other health benefits.
Natural Remedies for Losing Weight -- Guarana Guarana (Paullinia cupana) is another herbal promoted as a natural remedy for losing weight and is made from the seeds of a plant native to Brazil. The seed of the Guaranį is a central nervous system stimulant with thermogenic and diuretic properties. Basically what is in guarana is caffeine -- up to two to three times the amount of caffeine that coffee has. Guarana is the richest-known source of caffeine. You can find guarana as a major ingredient in energy drinks, which don't state there is caffeine in the drink, but rather say it provides an energy boost. Rather an understatement, as it's more like a major buzz. Coffee contains 100 mg of caffeine, Coke or Pepsi 36 mg, and Energy Drinks any where from 169 to 259 mg. That's a rush. Guarana falls into a category of weight loss supplements called thermogenesis right along with ephedra, caffeine and salicin. Basically it boosts your metabolic rate, causing your body to burn calories faster plus curb the appetite. Body fat that isn't burned is stored on your hips, thighs, stomach, etc. If you are going to go for this kind of product in your weight loss journey, you will need to find one strong enough to curb your appetite, that zips up the metabolism to burn more calories, create heat to burn more fat, and doesn't give unwanted side effects such as: jitteriness, nervousness, or heart palpitations. Taking a higher dose doesn't mean you lose weight faster. Instead, you just have more side effects. With thermogenesis based products drink more water (due to the heat factor), do not skip meals (low blood sugar), and do not take late at night (it will keep up awake) What you also need to remember with products that stimulate is stimulants burn calories, but increases heart rate and blood pressure. Caffeine suppresses the appetite, but gives you the jitters, mood swings and tension. What to choose? You will face some hard choices when it comes to deciding what might be the right natural remedy for losing weight for you. Guarana (or caffeine) may suppress appetite to a certain extent at high levels. On its own it's not a very effective supplement to create thermogenesis. Combine it with Ma Huang (Ephedra), and it appears the caffeine extends the appetite suppressing action of Ephedra and increases caloric expenditure. But you might not want to be combining two powerful stimulants together. And you most definitely do not want to be taking this if you are on blood thinner medications like Coumadin. Natural Remedies for Losing Weight -- Guar Gum So many people these days want a magic bullet to lose weight, actually fervently pray for such a thing. Unfortunately, there really is NO magic bullet for weight loss, other than good old hard work to make it happen. No matter what else you choose to do, you still need to change your eating habits, and increase your exercise. Why are these natural remedies for losing weight so popular? There are numerous reasons why the natural weight loss industry does a booming business every year. Over weight and obese people want something they can lose weight with immediately. It's easier that doing the grunt work. They have decided they don't want to be fat any longer and want instant results. They may have tried other weight loss avenues and given up. Herbal remedies are easy to obtain without a prescription. They appeal to people because of the outrageous claims made about weight loss. People think natural can't hurt you and that natural means safe -- and it doesn't. Hundreds of weight loss products have soluble fiber in them, meaning in theory, the fiber will absorb water in your gut, decreasing your appetite, making you feel full and not eat as much. Guar gum (from the cluster bean Cyamopsis tetragonolobus) is one of these fibers used as a natural remedy for losing weight. The guar seeds are dehusked, milled and screened to obtain the guar gum. Normally, you would find this thickening agent in foods, dairy products, sauces and ice cream. Used in food it is quite easy for the body to assimilate it. Used in diet concotions, that is another kettle of fish. Since it is capable of sweeling up to 10 to 20 times in the stomach when taken with fluids, it is supposed to make you feel full, cut your appetite, making you eat less, and thus losing weight. Unfortunately, there have been many instances of esophageal blockages with this product. Like Glocomannan, Guar gum has also led to gastrointestinal obstructions. Research indicates that this product was banned in the US in over-the-counter natural remedies for losing weight in the late 1980s. In addition, Guar gum was also proved ineffective in losing weight. However, with the exploding weight loss market, always be sure to read labels before you buy something. You will find that many things are called by other names and if you do not know what they are, you could buy something that will either by a waste of your money, or cause you more problems than you ever wanted. Natural Remedies for Losing Weight -- Garcinia (Hydroxycitric acid -- HCA) Garcinia Cambogia hails from India and Southeast Asia and is a pumpkin shaped fruit with a chemical structure similar to citric acid. Also called Malabar Tamarind, you will find this as a condiment in curry dishes. HCA apparently does reduce appetites and promotes weight loss in animals, as proven by several studies. However, when humans were studied, it was found HCA did not burn excess calories. In fact, it was labeled as no better than a sugar pill. Many claims on diet and weight loss remedy packages insist there are no side effects for HCA. No one seems to be sure whether there is or isn't which doesn't bode well for HCA as a natural remedy for losing weight. Bottom line? It's really unclear whether or not HCA offers weight loss benefits or not. The best that can be said about it is that it likely won't hurt you, although no real studies have been done addressing whether or not it's safe to take long term, or take at all. One double blind study found of 60 overweight people who used 440 mg of HCA 3 times a day showed weight loss. Yet another study (also double blind) of 135 overweight individuals who got either 500 mg of HCA or a placebo 3 times a day bombed out -- showed no effects re: weight loss. The best available data today shows this product is not effective for weight loss. You will definitely have to think long and hard about this particular product, even if you choose to use it in combination with another weight loss remedy. If you are gong to be spending money to buy products with dubious track records, then you are likely getting what you paid for. Try and thoroughly research HCA or any other natural remedy for losing weight to find out the pros and the cons before you take a leap of faith into something that might not work. Natural Remedies for Losing Weight -- Ephedra Most natural remedies, or over-the-counter (OTC) herbal medicines for weight loss have appetite suppressants in them. That only makes sense, as you want to stop eating as much. The appetite killers trick your body into thinking it's not really hungry. Short-term use isn't bad. Long-term use can lead to serious problems. Despite taking any of these natural remedies for losing weight, you still need to make major changes in your diet and exercise program. One of the more commonly used OTC natural weight loss remedies is Ephedra, aka Ma-Huang harvested from the Ephedra sinica plant. Interestingly enough, this plant has been used in traditional Chinese medicine for over 5,000 years for asthma, hay fever and the common cold. Native Americans and Mormon pioneers drank Mormon Tea, brewed from Ephedra. In 2004, it was banned after it came under fire for dangerous side effects and was cited as the culprit in several deaths. As of February 2007, the sale of dietary supplements containing ephedra is illegal in the USA. If you think this would work for you in your weight loss program, then the best thing to do is talk to your Doctor. It's better to be fully informed than to get a nasty surprise. Ma Huang or Ephedra has been commonly found in herbal dietary supplements for years. It also happens to be used in the manufacture of methamphetamine (speed). Its greatest claim to fame was that it suppressed the appetite so you would not eat as much -- which would mean you'd lose weight, but it has not been clinically proven to be effective in weight loss. Which is also interesting, because Ephedra is a stimulant and thermogenic. The brain is stimulated, heart rate increased, blood pressure increased and bronchial tubes expand. The thermogenic properties cause an increase in metabolism, which will usually start to burn off body fat. While this all sounds good, the down side to this natural remedy for losing weight is that it could literally kill you. Either because of the side effects, or because of a drug interaction with something else you may be taking. Seriously consider if this is really something you want to try. Natural Remedies for Losing Weight -- Dexatrim Many will remember the almost famous Dexatrim weight loss capsules. They've been around in so many different formulations it is almost difficult to keep up with them. They've so far been through three reincarnations, none of which seems to be all that effective in terms of being able to lose weight. Formulation number one contained phenylpropanolamine and was banned in 2001 because of its links to strokes. Formulation number two came out awhile later, and its main ingredient was ephedra also recalled in 2002 because it was cited as causing strokes, heart attacks and death. The manufactruing company is now on incarnation number three and the main ingredient this time is Bitter Orange Peel extract. -- now known as the other Ephedra of the weight loss industry. The Bitter Orange is combined with a few other proprietary ingredients -- which usually means they've just selected other herbals to combine and boost the main ingredient -- such as Yohimbe Bark (side effects like bitter orange, high blood pressure, palpitations, headache), Siberian Ginseng (safe), Licorice root (high doses cause high blood pressure), and so on. If you have been counting, there are at least three ingredients in this that can cause high blood pressure. Can you imagine the effect it may possibly have on you? Various formulations of Dexatrim have various ingredients in each, all of which would need to be checked and cross referenced. For instance, in one of their blends, the main ingredient is green tea extract -- the only herbal ingredient that has been shown to suppress appetite without side effects. But you certainly do not need to be buying a formulation with green tea extract and several other dubious weight loss products when you can buy a whole box of tea bags for about three dollars. Even though the company that makes Dexatrim (Chettem) has reinvented its weight loss products three times, it still isn't something that is considered to be safe or effective for long term weight loss results. The only long term effective weight loss program is eating less and exercising more. Natural Remedies for Losing Weight -- Dandelion The lowly Dandelion, the usual grass destroying culprit in our yards that gets cut on a regular basis with the lawnmower, is known by a variety of names such as lion's tooth, fairy clock, priest's crown, swine's snout, blowball, milk gowan, and wild endive. In addition to medicinal uses, dandelion can be used as a food and beverage. Leaves can be used raw in salads and sandwiches, or for tea. Roots can make a coffee substitute and the flowers can be used for wine and schnapps. In Europe, the dandelion was used to treat fevers, boils, diarrhea, fluid retention, heartburn, and various skin problems. The Chinese used dandelion to treat breast cancer, inflammation, lack of milk flow, liver diseases, and digestive problems. As far as weight loss is concerned, the dandelion is considered to be a natural diuretic. It may produce significant weight loss by decreasing body water. However, it can cause allergic reactions and heartburn. Weight control is definitely an obsession worldwide. In the US alone, two-thirds of the adult population is overweight and one third is classified as obese. It is any wonder that the natural herbal weight loss industry now offers more than 50 supplements and 125 proprietary products for weight loss. The question is have they been thoroughly tested to see if they live up to their claims. Dandelion has been around for a long time, and thus has a history to support its claims. Those who support the use of dandelion in weight loss claim it may flush out the kidneys, boost metabolism, and cut your craving for sweets. How? Eating the leaves raw in a salad, or making tea and drinking it three times a day. These may trim pounds in short order thanks to the diuretic effect, but continued use can cause dehydration and electrolyte abnormalities. You need to read all you can about any weight loss products before you try them. For safe weight loss, your best bet would be to use the tried and true methods of changing your eating habits and exercising more. Natural Remedies for Losing Weight -- Citricoma Losing weight is and can be a real struggle. And it seems it is usually women who are the ones trying to accomplish that. In a recent survery at least one sixth of the women were trying to lose weight. That's interesingn as almost 37 per cent of men are overweight to obese compared to 24 per cent of women. Imagine the numbers of people trying to lose weight or at least trying to get down to a healthy weight from what they currently are at. This might be difficult for those trying to shed pounds, but it certainly isn't all that bad for the diet industry -- which has literally quadrupled since 1988. Diet books still are still on book best-seller lists. Tabloids trumpet 10 Day Wonder Diets, and sales sky rocket as millions search for new ways to beat the bulge. What's new in the weight loss world? A brand new kid on the block (patent pending in fact), Citricoma comes from the maker of Cortislim. Apparently Citricoma is a new patent-pending blend of Citrus PMF (polymethoxylated flavones) and Eurycoma longifolia, for the healthy weight loss/management market. Reading the theory behind this new product would lead one to believe they may have a good idea. The question will be if it is as effective as they indicate it may be. Citrus peel extract includes Polymethoxylated Flavones (PMFs), particularly tangeretin, sinensetin, and nobilitin, which maintain cholesterol level and promote cardiovascular health. These super flavonoids have 3-fold potency in reducing cholesterol levels as compared to other citrus flavonoids. Citrus flavonoids reduce liver and adipose tissue, promoting healthy blood sugar control and weight loss. Eurycoma (Eurycoma Longifolia, aka Tongkat ali and Malaysian ginseng) is known to increase energy levels among other things. It is used to help maintain normal (low) cortisol and normal (high) testosterone levels during the stress of weight loss. Effective doses of Eurycoma help stop the "yo-yo" diet effect when a dieter's initial weight loss of a few pounds sends the body into a catabolic state, leading to binge eating and fat storage. Inhibiting or reducing the cortisol spike associated with weight loss can make it easier for a person to control their appetite. Controlling the cortisol and testosterone levels helps prevent the body from increasing fat storage and increases a person's baseline energy. It seems the jury is still out on this new product, but research results should soon be coming back from various groups who have tried this new product. Natural Remedies for Losing Weight -- Chromium Chromium, also referred to as Chromium Picolinate( a combination of chromium and picolinic acid), is a supposedly a miracle mineral that's just the bee's knees when it comes too natural remedies for losing weight. It is supposed to promote weight loss, enhance your moods, boost energy, and even let you live a longer life. This is actually a very popular weight loss aid and is supposed to melt fat, reduce appetite and kick up your metabolism. Sounds pretty good doesn't it? Who wouldn't want all those benefits in today's "obsessed with losing weight" culture. Interestingly enough, Chromium Picolinate is being promoted as a safe alternative to taking steroids. The claim is it increases strength and lean muscle mass. Obviously the manufacturers have been doing a good job of marketing this product as you will readily find it in hundreds of locations -- health food stores, drugstores and even on the Internet. How is this supposed to work? Chromium Picolinate works by stimulating the activity of insulin, significantly assisting the body's breakdown of glucose and fat. Some dieters claim the improved insulin efficiency causes an increase in seratonin, which reduces appetite. Others say chromium can prevent excess fat from forming. Whatever the actual truth of the matter is, it may remain a mystery for some time yet. The bottom line is it may work for some people, and not others. It may suppress appetite or not. If it makes you feel better about your weight loss efforts, then go for it. You will still need a program though that will help you succeed in keeping the fat off. There are so many differing opinions on this product that it's best to take some time and do your own research. Many swear by its ability to suppress appetite and thus promote weight loss. Others don't believe it can do what it claims to be able to deliver. The only person who can decide is you. Talk to people you know, read all you can get your hands on, and talk to your medical professional. Then, when you have enough information to make an informed choice, do what feels right for you. Natural Remedies for Losing Weight -- Chitosan This natural remedy for losing weight has a fascinating history and a ton of really useful things it is used for, not the least of which is supposedly being at fat attractant. One thing to note if you are considering trying this natural remedy for weight loss -- if you have shellfish allergies do not take this product. Chitosan is made from something called chitin -- a starch found in shrimp, crab and other shellfish skeletons. It's most common uses are: - As a plant growth enhancer, and defender against fungal infections. - As a filtration component in water processing engineering that binds sediment and removes it. It also removes phosphorus, heavy minerals, and oils from water. - As a clarifying agent for wine, mead and beer that removes yeast cells, fruit particles etc - As a blood clotter, used in bandages. Hypoallergenic with natural anti- bacterial properties. But, what about weight loss? Where does Chitosan fit into losing weight. Here's where the fat attractent theory comes into play. It's frequently sold in health food stores and billed as a substance that attracts fat from the digestive system and expels it from the body. This in theory means a dieter could lose weight without eating less. Unfortunately, it appears to be just that, a theory. Research has shown unmodified Chitosan would possibly remove about 30 calories a day from a person's diet. Modified, this product boasts claims (mostly unsubstantiated) of absorbing from three to six times its weight in fat and oil. Evidently initial trials with the product to test its effectiveness as a weight loss remedy were conducted on animals, not humans. So most of the speculation about what this product can or can not do is moot and just that, speculation. It seems most weight loss professionals agree that Chitosan doesn't do the job when it comes to weight loss. And what recent trials there have been only show no more weight loss than a person who took placebo sugar pills. Chitosan (KITE-o-san). This dietary supplement is made from chitin, a starch found in the skeleton of shrimp, crab, and other shellfish. Chitosan cannot be digested; therefore it passes through your intestinal tract unabsorbed without adding any calories. The chemical nature of Chitosan makes it bind with fatty foods, removing some of the fat from your body as it passes through rather than allowing it to be absorbed. Several studies, however, found no more weight loss from Chitosan than from a placebo (sugar pill). Natural Remedies for Losing Weight -- Cascara Cascara Sagrada (also called Sacred Bark, Bitter Bark, Chittem bark , California Buckthorn and Rhamnus purshiana) is a common ingredient found in natural remedies for losing weight. A strong stimulant laxative, it needs to be used with a great deal of care because it can leech potassium and sodium from your body. Of interest, the bark of the tree is removed, cut into small pieces, and dried for one year before being used medicinally. Spanish priests in California named the tree Cascara is harvested from. It's name origins may either be from the medicinal properties of the bark or from its resemblance to wood used for the ark of the covenant. Most Doctors will advice you that Cascara should be taken consecutively for no longer than eight to ten days, so you need to very carefully read labels when considering a natural remedy for losing weight that contains cascara. If pregnant or nursing, you must also use this with extreme caution. It seems the main raison d'etre of this herbal product is to promote bowel movements, so how does it figure in today's natural remedies for losing weight? Many of the products being marketed that have Cascara in them are packaged with other products to supposedly give you a lean look, help you become a fat burning furnace and so forth. This is precisely this thing you need to be careful of when you read labels. If you find yourself reading a label that has Cascara, psyllium husks and Senna(all bowel movement enhancers), and Valerian (for sleeplessness) and an appetite suppressant, and a whole list of other ingredients, head for your Pharmacist to translate for you. It may be that using a product like this helps you lose weight because you are continually expelling what you do eat with the aid of bowel stimulators. Not a healthy way to lose weight. While Senna, Cascara, and Aloe are authorized for oral use as laxatives, they are also way too often promoted for detoxifying or cleansing regimens. There are serious risks with the chronic use of laxatives or combining multiple laxatives together. These can include the risk of electrolyte disturbances affecting the heart, as well as functional bowel problems. Use caution when investigating herbal substances for weight loss. Natural Remedies for Losing Weight -- Bitter Orange It seems that Bitter Orange(Citrus aurantium aka sour orange, bigarade orange and Seville orange) is the "other" ephedra, and as such has similar side effects. Natural remedies for losing weight that have Bitter Orange in them are marketed as Ephedra Free when in reality their chemical make up is almost a mirror image of the ephedrine in Ephedra. This is just one reason why you need to be carefully reading labels and researching ingredients on any product you are considering for your weight loss journey. Bitter Orange contains synephrine and octopamine, chemicals that may cause high blood pressure, and heart disturbances. This herbal can also inhibit the metabolism of many drugs meaning it would increase the amount of the drug in your body and the risk of adverse side effects. You have to stop and ask yourself if risking your health if worth it under these circumstances when you can lose weight by merely changing your diet and exercising. Bitter orange as well as bitter orange peel is not recommended for use in isolation -- for instance, in traditional Chinese medicine, it is prescribed in support with other herbs by experienced herbalists. The flower of the bitter orange is used for poor appetite, chest and stomach pain, and vomiting. Homeopathic practitioners use the peel and flower for headaches and pain. Only the peel has proven medicinal value, mainly for digestive problems. It does appear that the several compounds in Bitter Orange will stimulate metabolic rates, but no clinical trials have actually proven this. It may be that Bitter Orange is effect when combined with St. John's Wort and Caffeine. However, this means three stimulants all at once. Even in the best of circumstances, taking three known stimulants in one preparation is not a good idea. Most natural remedies for losing weight that use Bitter Orange made from concentrated extract of the peel contain anywhere from 1 to 6 per cent synephine. Unfortunately, this could vary up to amounts of about 30 per cent or more depending or what part of the plant was used and how it was processed. Bottom line? Use extreme caution when taking any herbal remedies that contain so many stimulants. Always ask your Doctor or an experienced herbalist about these preparations before taking them. Natural Weight Loss Remedies -- Ayurveda Being overweight or even morbidly obese seems to be quite a common problem worldwide. Ayurveda, perhaps more a methodology, is considered a good natural way to lose weight. It breaks human bodies into two categories -- the very thin and the very fat. Fat bodies struggle with more diseases like high blood pressure, diabetes, arthritis, and gall bladder problems. The main philosophy behind Ayurveda is the belief that being over-weight is due mainly to overeating, irregular eating habits and not properly balancing meals. To that end, they highly recommend natural weight loss home remedies -- a diet you can easily follow at home. Please remember, even this approach recommends exercising regularly. Ayurveda promotes using more fruits and green veggies, avoid too much salt, and avoid fat rich dairy products, meat and non-vegetarian foods. Use dry ginger, cinnamon, and black pepper (fat burners). Avoid rice and potatoes, but go with a wheat based cereal. Eat bitter gourd, and take honey as it mobilizes fat deposits (10 gms daily in hot water with 1 tsp of lemon juice). Try a lime/honey fast to keep energy levels up. Juice of half a lime, 1 tsp fresh honey in lukewarm water at regular intervals. Cabbage is touted for inhibiting the conversion of sugar and other carbs into fat. Eat raw or cooked. And, make your portions smaller. Supplements are also suggested like Ezi Slim, Medohar Vidangadi Lauh, Punarnavadi Guggul and Neemguard. Evidently Neemguard (Neem, Giloy and Triphala) is considered safe for increasing the metabolism to reduce your weight and the Indian herb guggulu (a gum resin obtained from the plant of Balsamo-dendron mukul) is the drug of choice for treating obesity. Many of the herbs used in other countries, while likely effective, may be of questionable use to you if you are not sure just what they are, and what they do. Although the Ayurveda supplements are herbal and natural, you might want to check with your Doctor before embarking on a weight loss program like this.
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