Last updated: February 20. 2013 3:05AM - 488 Views

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Wouldn't it just be wonderful if a pill could instantly dissolve off all of our extra holiday cheer? Some claim to have found it in a supplement called raspberry ketone. Others warn us to look at the facts.


Here's what we know about raspberry ketone, thanks to some smart investigation by dietitian intern Marian Crockett:



Claim: Raspberry ketone is the primary aroma compound of red raspberries.



Fact: True. Raspberry ketone (also referred to as RK) is a chemical compound that gives raspberries their fruity fragrance. Food and cosmetic manufacturers add it to their products for this purpose.



Claim: Research has shown that raspberry ketone can help with weight-loss efforts, especially when paired with regular exercise and a well-balanced diet of healthy and whole foods.



Fact: Regular exercise and a well-balanced diet do indeed help with weight loss efforts. Raspberry ketone has not been scientifically studied in humans, so it's anyone's guess whether it aids weight loss.



Claim: Raspberry ketone causes the fat within your cells to get broken up more effectively, helping your body burn fat faster.



Fact: Perhaps if you are a rat. One study tested RK on six obese male rats and compared it to six other rats. The rats fed RK were more likely to lose weight. Another study exposed RK to fat cells in a test tube and found that RK stimulated the breakdown of these cells.



Claim: Raspberry ketone is a miracle fat burner in a bottle.



Fact: Raspberry ketone is a miracle money maker in a bottle. Unless you are an obese male rat, it is way too early to draw any conclusions about the effectiveness or safety of RK as a weight loss aid.


A recent review article in the International Journal of Sports Nutrition concluded: There is no strong research evidence indicating that a specific supplement will produce significant weight loss, especially in the long term. Weight-loss supplements containing metabolic stimulants (such as caffeine, ephedra, or synephrine) are most likely to produce adverse side effects and should be avoided.


— MCT Information Services


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