Should You Use Herbal Weight Loss Supplements?

Folks trying to lose weight, often consider using herbal weight loss supplements. In fact, herbal supplements are a common addition to many weight loss plans especially programs that focus on natural weight loss.

Taking herbal products is a good idea if you want a more natural way to suppress appetite or decrease bloating, but you should take these supplements with caution just like you would a regular weight loss medication. Many of the ingredients included in natural herbal products can interact negatively with prescription medications or make current health situations worse. By researching the products first, you can insure what you take is safe and contributes to weight loss.

Here is an overview of what you need to think about before deciding whether to include herbal supplements as part of your weight loss plan.

How Do Herbal Weight Loss Supplements Work?

Some herbal supplements work alone to help people lose weight, but most products contain a variety of ingredients that work together to help the body lose weight. Herbal products can help you lose weight by acting as a diuretic or laxative and helping the body to clean out toxins and waste and decrease bloat. Other herbal ingredients act as a natural appetite suppressant, increase thyroid function, stimulate digestion, or help absorb fat. When these ingredients combine together in one product the body is aided in burning fat and decreasing toxins and waste.

How to Choose the Best Herbal Supplement for Your Weight Loss Goals

The best way to explore herbal weight loss pills is to research each individual ingredient before deciding on a specific product. Since each natural herb affects a different function in the body, you must decide if you want a pill that combines a bunch of ingredients or if you want to take a stand-alone herbal supplement. The majority of weight loss products include a variety of ingredients. Fore example, aloe and dandelion are two ingredients commonly found in herbal weight loss products. Aloe acts as a laxative and dandelion acts as a diuretic, both which help you lose weight by reducing bloat and water weight.

Other common herbal ingredients include guggul, white leadwort, black pepper, triphala, and chitosan. Knowing what each one does, and whether it has a proven track record of aiding weight loss, can help you choose the right herbal mix.

The Potential Side Effects of Herbal Supplements to Lose Weight

Although herbal remedies are touted as natural and you don’t need a prescription to purchase them, they can still cause adverse side effects. Guar gum is an herb that adds bulk and improves digestion, but its ability to swell to ten times its size can lead to blockages in the stomach or throat. Guarana is a stimulant used for its diuretic properties, but it has also been found to act adversely with anticoagulants and cause caffeine-type withdrawals after discontinued use. While the majority of herbal weight loss products are safe, it’s always wise to check with a physician or homeopath before taking any weight loss pills that may interact negatively with prescribed medications.

Sources:
Ayurvedic Cure (http://www.ayurvediccure.com/loose_weight.htm)
Cleveland Clinic (http://my.clevelandclinic.org/healthy_living/weight_control/hic_over-the-counter_and_herbal_remedies_for_weight_loss.aspx)



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