Tag Archives: Weight loss

Searching for Oz’s Ketones

20070819_1750
20070819_1750 (Photo credit: Uncle Beast)

The man has some power. It’s like as soon as the words fell from his lips, the product fell off the shelves, and the entire city literally sold out in a matter of days. I’m not certain if Dr. Oz is as popular and trusted outside of NYC as he is in, and I admit that until last week, my attention to him and his recommendations were marginal. But as I sympathetically turned away one disappointed seeker after another and provided the returning pursuant customers with updates of the great raspberry ketone shortage, I had to stand up and recognize the impact of this man’s words.

And what were his words? What would send seemingly every Tom, Dick and Jane to the health food and supplement stores? Weight loss. I probed, picked and prodded for something more, some other stated health benefit, but none were offered. If Dr. Oz did highlight other benefits of the fruit component, my customers didn’t hear them. So began my investigation into this now infamously hot commodity.

For Your Information and Mine

In the human body, ketones are produced when fatty acids are broken down and used for energy. Since the majority of our bodies’ energy is supplied by carbohydrate breakdown, the utilization of fatty acids as its primary fuel source occurs only when the body lacks the necessary amount of glucose yielding carbohydrates to sustain its self. Not that ketones are unnecessary, they are in fact essential to the heart and brain, but comparably small amounts are needed by the body to run efficiently; and in excess, they can negatively impact the body’s balance and consequently its health.

Ketone bodies, as this group of metabolic byproducts is referred, are not like glucose. Most excess is not stored in the body for later use but rather broken down and excreted by the body in a matter of hours. Hence the quick weight loss attributed to low carb high fat diets, fasting and other methods that force the body,specifically the liver and kidneys, into a state of rapid and repetitive ketogenesis. And when this occurs and causes the more acidic ketone bodies to accumulate, our blood’s PH is lowered to dangerously acidic levels. A lower blood PH/higher acidic state is not only associated with accelerated aging but actually considered by many health care professionals to be a diseased state.

Now the Diet Hype

Raspberry Ketones 250mg 120 Count

In raspberries, ketones are the compounds responsible for the fruit’s aroma and thus commonly added to foods and cosmetics to enhance their fragrance. In some animal studies, high doses of raspberry ketones have been found to prevent weight gain by increasing the animal’s breakdown and use of lipids (fats, fatty acids and cholesterol). There are several hormones that trigger lipid metabolism and norepinephrine is one. Supportive studies have observed an increase in the release of the norepinephrine hormone from high doses (as much as 2% of the total caloric intake) of raspberry ketones. Ultimately the process of lipid metabolism results in the formation of ketones which, as previously stated, when allowed to run amok can lead to serious health problems.

Currently there are no human subject studies to back up the effects observed in animals, which is reason enough to approach this weight management method as responsibly as you would a thermogenic (fat burner). First consult with your physician, and if your doc okays it then use the product as directed by them or the instructions on the label and don’t be afraid to give the body a break.

The usual 6 days on, one day off cycle combined with a few weeks break after 8 weeks of consecutive use should still be applied to this supplement. And if you select a raspberry ketone product that contains caffeine or other stimulants, avoid taking it within 5-6 hours of bedtime. Lastly, manipulating the body’s metabolic processes does not change the fact that weight management is a numbers game, calories in vs. calories out .And even actual fat burners work better when combined with healthy eating and exercise habits. So keep these in your arsenal for the long haul, looking to supplements for a jump-start or temporary source of support rather than long-term solution.

If you do manage to get your hands on the raspberry ketones, please drop me a line and let me know how they’re work for you.

Until next time, take care, sample safely and…

BeWell

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A Solution to Holiday Weight Gain?

 There’s a new burner on the market that claims, as most now do, to”suppress appetite, control carb cravings, support mental focus, clarity and energy,” in a one cap per day serving. MethylHex 4, 2 is a 206 mg proprietary blend of thermogenics (fat-burners), neurotransmitters and endurance activators, with its most abundant ingredients being caffeine and a pharmaceutical grade extract of geranium leaves and stems called 4-Methylhexan-2-Amine HCL or methylhexaneamine.

Methylhexaneamine is a chemical component of the plant Pelargonium graveloines that is known for its adrenaline mimicking qualities and has the reputation of being similar in action to ephedra ( Ma Huang) but less stimulating to the central nervous system. Some of you may recall the back in the day burners that made you feel like you could easily conquer the world, not to mention that day’s workout. Due to gross misuse of ephedra based products, this potent decongestant, diuretic and stimulating herb was banned from use in over-the-counter remedies. Methlhexaneamine has also been removed from many products due to its prohibited use by professional athletes, some police forces and various other competitive sport governing agencies. It is considered a strong performance enhancer perhaps because of its norepinephrine like behavior (elevation of heart rate, release of glucose, increased blood flow to muscles).

Now because my goals are primarily energy, focus and mood enhancement not weight loss, I tried this supplement to evaluate its impact in these areas. For seven days I took one pill a day, in the morning, on an empty stomach, following or with a caffeinated beverage. On the days that I danced in the evening, I skipped my usual pre-workout powder. One day I had half of a super fruit drink that contains the energizing herb guarana and has about 50 mg of caffeine/serving. So, that day I had approximately 25 mg of caffeine as a pre-workout. On another dance day, I skipped both the pre-workout powder and the energy drink and just had my usual a.m. cup of Joe. I had a 12:00 drum class followed by two hours of dance class and felt good, even great, all the way through.

The Low Down

After day one, I could already see the potential to really dig this product. I had smooth energy that set in about 45 minutes after taking it. I also experienced the brain buzz that I admittedly enjoy and a great sense of focus. And yep, yep, yep, despite the stress of the day my mood stayed relatively positive; minor glitches felt like merely that. No sweat, just things to handle and move on. Bingo! My agenda was met, and in addition to that, I didn’t feel especially hungry throughout the day. I didn’t even feel that strong hunger sensation on my longer and more active days. I only really ate because I knew I should or at times had those “yeah, I could eat moments”. So I’m thinking that I could definitely get used to the mental and energetic sensations, and I do see the potential for weight loss if used for a longer duration of time.

Tips from the Rep

I had the opportunity to speak with a representative from the MethylHex 4,2 makers SEI Nutrition, and his recommendations were as follows:

  1. Only take one pill at a time.
  2. If you feel the need to take a second pill, only do so after 6 hours have passed from when you took the first, and take no more than 2 pills within a 24 hour period. Methylhexaneamine’s effects on the body last for at least six hours.
  3. If you need or enjoy an immediate burst of energy, take it with a simple (non-geranium containing) caffeinated beverage.
  4. If you work for an organization that performs drug or blood doping tests, take the product with you to show the officials what may register in your “sample”.

In addition to the rep’s advice, I also suggest that you:

  1. Recall your medical history and know your family’s. The most active ingredients are considered safe for use but the label does state that anyone with a history of stroke, heart attack, high blood pressure, liver, thyroid and/or kidney disorders should consult with a physician before taking. Don’t be alarmed. Most fat burning products have a similar warning on the package.
  2. If you decide to use the product, do so for no more than 8 consecutive weeks and then take a few weeks off.
  3. Adhere to the 6 days on, 1 day off/4 weeks on, 1 week off approach if possible. Natural products can elicit physiological effects that we can become mentally reliant upon, and habits are not fun to break.
  4. Eat 4-6 well-balanced meals per day even if you are not super hungry. This will naturally boost your metabolism and sustain your energy throughout the day.
  5. Try it as a standalone supplement before layering on others, especially other energizers, including caffeine.

In all, I think it is a good all-in-one weight management product, best used as a jump-start to more long-term lifestyle changes such as regular exercise, proper meal planning and stress management techniques. I definitely see its usefulness in getting through and past the holidays without worrying about and actually gaining extra weight. As long as you fall outside of the warning label’s restrictions and use it responsibly, for a limited period of time, it should be fine. Of course, always consult with your doctor if you are uncertain about any product’s appropriateness for you. Play it safe folks!

Consider Health First, and BeWell