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Most Weight-Loss Supplements are Ineffective

A recent review of the body of evidence around weight-loss supplements performed at Oregon State University and published in the International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism suggests, again, that a magic pill does not exist for weight loss. Supplements are a $2.4 billion dollar business in the United States, but the data collected on hundreds of weight-loss supplements showed that, for the most part, the results they produce are disappointing. The primary researcher, Dr. Manore, a professor of nutrition and exercise sciences at OSU, suggests “no research evidence exists that any single product results in significant weight loss – and many have detrimental health benefits.” Among those evaluated, a few products, including green tea, fiber and low-fat dairy supplements, demonstrated a modest weight-loss benefit of three to four pounds (two kilograms), but an important caveat is these supplements were tested as part of a reduced-calorie diet. Consistent with the belief of most experts, Manore said that "for most people, unless you alter your diet and get daily exercise, no over-the-counter supplement is going to have a big impact.”

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