Diets in Review - Find the Right Diet for You

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Diet Supplement Comparison: Raspberry Ketones vs. Hoodia vs. Acai

Let’s face reality. As much as doctors and pharmacists will tell you there are risks in taking diet pills and the effects they could have on your health, people take them anyway. What I do believe in is the power of knowledge and educating yourself before taking any chances. Let’s take a look at three pretty popular diet aids and how they compare to each other: Acai, Hoodia, and Raspberry Ketones, the newest craze.

RASPBERRY KETONES

Raspberry Ketones were recently discussed on the Dr. Oz show and hours later pharmacies were getting calls from patients. “Where can I get it, is it safe?” Well I can tell you that not many pharmacies or stores carry this product yet.  It’s believed that raspberry ketones help burn fat by increasing the release of  norepinephrine in your body. This causes the body’s temperature to rise and in doing this increases the body’s metabolism. Increased norepinephrine could causes an increase in blood pressure and heart rate. Currently most of the raspberry ketone studies conducted were done in mice and we don’t have much to go on for how this will affect humans.

HOODIA

Hoodia is derived from a plant located in Southern Africa called hoodia gordonii. Commercially you can buy it in capsules, tablets, chocolate chews, and a variety of other forms. There are numerous websites selling hoodia, but because the products are not regulated by the FDA it’s possible you won’t be getting any of what you paid for.

There are few studies to support the effectiveness of hoodia. Pfizer was looking to enter the diet pill market and developed a molecule called P57, which was very similar to hoodia, but in 2003 decided to discontinue their research and give the rights to the other company they were working with, called Phytopharm.


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Acai Berry Supplements for Weight Loss May be a Waste

There comes a certain point in some people’s weight loss journey where they start to get frustrated and desperate. They may turn to options other than diet and exercise to kick start results and if it’s something quick and easy, they’ll take it. One of those options most frequently includes diet pills and supplements. One particular little fruit has become increasingly popular for fast and easy weight loss: the acai berry. But, does it live up to the hype?

Acai berry came onto the American market when it was promoted as a superfood for age-defying beauty by Dr. Nicholas Perricone on the Oprah Winfrey show. The fruit is grown in Brazil and tastes like a cross between wild berries and chocolate. Acai in berry form contains significant amounts of healthy fats and fiber and the juice contains antioxidants making it a smart addition to any diet.


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Government Cracks Down on Acai Berry Sellers

You know how some less-than-reputable health supplement companies shill their products by attaching major news organizations to their pitch in order to lend credibility to their product? Right, I don’t know how they get away with it either.

Regulators aren’t too happy about some of these tactics, and are now starting to crack down on companies that sell acai berry weight loss products with fake endorsements from news organizations, including CNN, Fox News and USA Today.

The Federal Trade Commission has requested that federal courts freeze the assets of 10 operations using allegedly deceptive tactics such as fake news websites to market products.
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Amafruits: Acai Without the Gimmicks

amafruits AcaiThere’s been a lot of hype surrounding the Acai berry, an Amazonian fruit with alleged super-nutrients. While Acai isn’t a miracle weight-loss food (no such thing exists), it is a rich source of many of the nutrients you need, including vitamin A, minerals, potassium and iron.

Acai berries themselves are difficult to find whole, but many companies offer juices and extracts. Last night I tried out Amafruits’ Acai puree. The puree comes frozen in packs of four, with a choice of Acai Energy Mix with Guarana or Acai Pure & Unsweetened. A pack of either flavor counts as a serving of fruit. Many other Acai juices add a lot of sugar to compensate for the berry’s slightly bitter taste. The unsweetened fruit pulp is about as close to eating the berries as you can get: no pills, pyramid schemes or other fruit juices added for bulk.


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Ask Mary Answers How You Can Control Your Metabolism

Mary Hartley, RD, MPH, is the director of nutrition for Calorie Count, providing domain expertise on issues related to nutrition, weight loss and health. She creates original content for weekly blogs and newsletters, for the Calorie Count library, and for her popular daily Question-and-Answer section, Ask Mary. Ms. Hartley also furnishes direction for the site features and for product development.

Calorie Count members want to know about specific foods that affect metabolic rate (the speed at which the body uses calories for fuel.) Here are two of the readers’ favorite “Ask Mary Q+As” about metabolism and food.
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