Every time you open a magazine, turn on the TV, or go online, you are bombarded with countless ads for pills and products promising to make all your dreams come true. How are you to know which of these herbal weight loss products will actually help your efforts and which of them are simply a waste of money? They all make promises, and none of them are, in the United States, at least, regulated and tested by the federal government. Fortunately, other countries have been much more open to herbal medicine and have run quite a few studies on all manner of substances. Here, we will outline some of those that have been popular for weight loss, and whether or not they are effective.
Green Tea - Green tea is a mild stimulant with the bonus of being very high in antioxidants. Aside from helping people lose weight, it is a very healthy beverage and has been attributed a wide array of health benefits. Capsules are available, but it is best taken as the tea itself.
Cayenne - Safe and natural, cayenne is a great supplement for herbal weight loss. The best part is that it can be added directly to your food so you don't have to mess with the pills. Cayenne stimulates saliva production, promotes digestion, and safely boosts metabolism.
Dandelion - Dandelion is a natural diuretic that is commonly taken as a tea. It can cause significant immediate weight loss, but, unfortunately, it is entirely water weight. It can also cause allergic reactions in some people.
Ephedra - Ephedra is the active ingredient in many weight loss substances, and has long been known to be a powerful stimulant. This is a dangerous product that can cause insomnia, hypertension, blood sugar swings, and death. This product should be avoided at all costs.
Aloe - If taken internally, aloe can be a powerful laxative. It has also been linked to a number of internal complications, such as: cramping, diarrhea, and interfering with the body's ability to retain minerals. Its lasting benefits in regard to losing weight have never been proven, however. It is best used topically only.
There are countless other herbal weight loss products that were not covered here, but the trend among most of them tends to shift more toward the useless than the useful, and frequently sways even further into being dangerous for your health. In the end, weight loss is best left to lifestyle change and exercise.