Chitosan and other so-called “Fat Magnets”
What is Chitosan?
Chitosan or D-Glucosamine is an over-the-counter diet or weight loss capsule derived from finely ground shellfish. Sometimes called “Fat Magnets”, chitosan pills supposedly cause weight loss by binding fats in the stomach, causing them to pass through the gut without being absorbed. Sellers of chitosan and chitosan based products have also claimed that chitosan lowers cholesterol, reduces the risk of obesity, high blood pressure, heart attack, and cancer.
Does Chitosan Work?
It seems not. Although chitosan may decrease fat absorption, the actual amount contained in the capsules is not sufficient to have much of an effect on cholesterol levels. There seems to be no official evidence that chitosan leads to effective weight loss, or reduces the risks of obesity, high blood pressure, heart disease or cancer.
On the contrary, by shifting attention away from the need to modify dietary habits and take exercise, chitosan (and other similar weight loss products) may actually hinder the fight against obesity and obesity-related disease.
Lastly, any fat-binding weight loss product like chitosan is just as likely to neutralize ‘good fats’ (like necessary unsaturated fats and fat-soluble vitamins) as ‘bad fats’ (saturated fats). This is not healthy.
The Danger of Over-the-Counter Weight Loss Pills
Because over-the-counter weight loss pills are easier to obtain than prescription-only pharmaceuticals, they can pose additional risks for dieters – especially teenage dieters, who may be tempted to view these weight loss pills as the answer to their bad diet habits. If you are a teenager with weight problems, please avoid these weight loss products. Instead, focus on improving your diet and exercise habits.
Weight Loss Pills are Not The Answer to Obesity
Even if your doctor recommends them to you, studies show that weight loss pills do not bring lasting weight loss. So perhaps, instead of searching for a magic weight loss pill, it might be better to concentrate on finding a proper diet and support group to help you manage your weight in the long term.
A Note about Healthy Weight Control
Fad diets, unbalanced diets, diet pills, diet supplements, weight loss surgery and other short term weight loss methods are not recommended for permanent weight control. The best way to lose excess fat and maintain a healthy weight in the long term is to follow a balanced calorie-controlled diet (that improves your eating habits) and take regular aerobic exercise. An excellent option is Anne Collins Weight Loss Program