While Diet Pills have shown effectiveness over the years with regards to energy and weight loss, many would argue that the positive results do come with a price. Several diet pill ingredients can cause mild side effects, even when taken in moderate doses. In the following, we will review several of the ingredients in diet pill formulas, and, the safety/health risks that they pose. The specific ingredients that we will look at are: Caffeine, Gymnema sylvestre, Rrhodiola rosea, Withania somnifera, and Garcinia cambogia. We will also take a look at some of the best diet pills on the market, and, give opinions on which are the safest and most effective when used correctly.
Diet Pill Ingredient Safety
Some diet pills contain large amounts of caffeine, present both in Green Tea Extract and Guranna. While numerous studies have been conducted regarding the relative safety of caffeine, many believe that when taken in high dosage, such as in Hydroxycut, caffeine can have dire effects. In a 2008 study, conducted by the Kaiser Permanente Division of Research, it is made quite evident that high daily dosages of caffeine during pregnancy caused an increased risk of miscarriages. The study controlled the pregnancy related symptoms of nausea, vomiting, and caffeine aversion; symptoms that tended to interfere with caffeine’s true effect on potential miscarriages.
The Kaiser Permanente study, which looked at 1,063 women in the California area, focused on individuals who did not decrease their caffeine consumption amounts even when they knew that they were pregnant. Women who consumed 200mg or more of caffeine per day had twice the miscarriage risk of women who did not. Most agree that one dosage of a typical weight loss pill contains about (2) cups of coffee with regards to caffeine amount (about 200mg). Multiply this by 3 dosages per day, and, you can see why the product could be viewed as unsafe.
Caffeine’s side effects can deteriorate more than just an individual’s physical condition. In a recent study, researchers found that people who consume caffeine in high amounts in some instances begin developing what they call a “Dr. Jekyll-Mr. Hyde side effect”. This simply means that when the caffeine in your system initially kicks in, you feel good – alive, alert, and ready to take on the world. Once the caffeine subsides, though, many individuals begin to feel tried, irritable, and even depressed. This phenomenon occurs due to the strong stimulant properties brought on by caffeine. The stimulant wakens the mind, ultimately causing the brain to work faster and more efficiently so that it may finish all assigned tasks. However, just like other stimulants, the burst doesn’t last forever; the high crashes fast, causing your brain to slow processes and interpret the feeling as tiredness and anxiety.
While many have viewed caffeine as a “stress reliever” in the past, the opposite is in fact true. As stated above, caffeine can certainly induce stress and anxiety. A new study at the Duke University Medical Center found that caffeine actually exaggerates stress. The researchers concluded that the equivalent of 4 cups of coffee in a 24 hour period raised blood pressure for several hours. With that said, if you take Hydroxycut, even as directed, you are consuming about 150% of the amount of caffeine needed to cause high blood pressure. Pd.D. James D. Layne said of the study:
“The level of blood pressure change we saw has been associated with an increased risk of heart disease. People consuming typical amounts of coffee and caffeinated soft drinks are probably raising their blood pressure by an amount equal to the beneficial reduction seen with antihypertensive drugs. So if you are taking blood pressure medication, it may not be doing you any good if you are drinking three or four cups of coffee a day.”
The Duke University study was carried out by recruiting 47 daily coffee drinkers for a 2 day period. Half of the recruits were given placebo pills in the morning, while the other half were given caffeine pills. When caffeine and placebo users were compared, the researchers found blood pressure to be consistently higher in the caffeine users – an average of 4 millimeters (mm) higher for systolic pressure and 3 mm for diastolic.
Gymnema sylvestre, another ingredient in many weight loss pills, also seems to lead to increased blood pressure. While short term side effects are subtle and sometimes nonexistent, one study conducted in 2001 shows that long term use of this substance, even in small amounts, gradually raises systolic blood pressure. Gymnema sylvestre can also be very bad for diabetics, or worse, individuals who do not know that they have diabetic tendencies. A 1998 study showed that this substance, with moderate use, can rapidly reduce blood sugar levels – which of course, is not a desirable for diabetic individuals.
Rrhodiola rosea, another prominent ingredient in some of the best diet pills, has been studied with regards to its effects as a stimulant. A double-blind, placebo-controlled pilot study, revealed that higher doses of this herb caused side effects which included a “jittery” feeling. As with most stimulants, increases heart rate can be expected. However, one of the more shocking revelations laid out in the study, indicated that the use of this herb could also increase heart palpitations.
The side effects of other substances in several of the best diet pills, though not as severe as many of the aforementioned, are still undesirable and can cause some minor health risks. Withania somnifera, also known as Indian Ginseng, seems to cause slight nausea and impaired vision on many individuals when used in normal dosages. Another culprit, Garcinia cambogia, seems to cause negative side effects for the babies of breast feeding mothers. Further, large dosages of this herb over a prolonged period of time have been seen to cause diarrhea, laxative effects, and vomiting.
The Best Diet Pills
So which diet pills are the best? Which ones should we use if we want to lose weight safely? Not all diet pills are bad, and, many of the best diet pills on the market pose very little health risk when taken as recommended. For the most part, diet pills with lower amounts of caffeine are probably the best for you health wise. Try to stay away from pills that are not only high in caffeine, but also taurine and synephrine, as these can act similarly to amphetamines; typically causing increased heart rate, anxiety, and an overall jittery feeling. Green Tea extract, though mentioned above, is truly one of the best and safest supplements to use for dieting. Hoodia supplements, also, tend to be safe diet pills and provide fantastic results over time. Good luck with your dieting! With a little research and safety in mind, the use of diet pills can remain healthy and rewarding.