In the health world, everything Dr. Oz touches seems to turn to gold so it’s no wonder raspberry ketone became the hottest weight loss trend after the supplement appeared on Dr. Oz’s show.
Dr. Oz has taken heat for recommending weight loss products in the past, so it’s only reasonable that many people have expressed their doubts about raspberry ketone. Could raspberry ketone really be the miraculous weight loss supplement we’ve all been waiting for – or is it just another weight loss trick we’ve fallen for once again?
Let’s look at the facts about raspberry ketone:
What is Raspberry Ketone?
Raspberry ketone is a natural compound found in red raspberries that give them their smell. There’s also a small amount of raspberry ketone in blackberries, cranberries, and kiwis.
Raspberry ketone has been used in cosmetics for decades and it is frequently added to soft drinks, ice cream, and other processed foods as a flavor.
Although raspberry ketone would imply it comes from red raspberries, the truth is that only a miniscule amount is found in red raspberries. In fact, you’d need almost 90 pounds of raspberries just to extract a single dose of raspberry ketone.
This is why raspberry ketone found in supplements is synthetically made and not technically natural raspberry ketone. However, since it’s still has the same molecular structure, synthetic raspberry ketone will work just the same.
How Does Raspberry Ketone Work?
What originally started the interest in raspberry ketone is that it is similar in structure to two other potent weight loss compounds, capsaicin, and synephrine. Since these two molecules have been shown to improve metabolism, researchers speculated that raspberry ketone could do the same.
The original research study that many supplement manufacturers mention was conducted by Japanese researchers in 2004. In the study, researchers gave rats raspberry ketone in combination with a high fat diet and they found that:
- Raspberry ketone seemed to increase lipolysis (the breakdown of fat), primarily by making fat cells more sensitive to the effects of the hormone norepinephrine.
- Fat cells released more adiponectin, a potent fat burning hormone.
Adiponectin is a hormone that is released by fat cells and it may have a role in both the regulation of metabolism and of blood sugar levels. According to several studies, people with low adiponectin are more likely to be obese, have type 2 diabetes, and fatty liver and heart disease.
People with higher adiponectin levels seem to be naturally thin and are less likely to be overweight and have a reduced risk for thyroid issues.
Will Raspberry Ketones Work in Humans?
Unfortunately, despite the hype surrounding raspberry ketone, there are no properly formatted studies involving raspberry ketone in humans.
There is only one study we could find that also used caffeine, garlic, ginger, synephrine, and capsaicin in combination with raspberry ketone.
In the study, participants lost 7.8% of their fat mass, compared to only 2.8% in the placebo group. However, this study is far from reliable considering there are so many other variables to consider. It is entirely possible that caffeine or capsaicin were responsible for the weight loss results.
Side Effects of Raspberry Ketone
Although the FDA lists raspberry ketone as GRAS (generally recognized as safe), there have been reports of side effects associated with raspberry ketone.
While these side effects are often minor in nature and do not often cause any dramatic changes in an individual’s health, they can still be bothersome and troubling.
The most common side effects seem to be your typical side effects like nausea, headache, diarrhea, dizziness, or faintness. These side effects tend to be minor to mild in nature and may disappear after a day or two.
Other people have reported having an allergic reaction to raspberry ketone. If you’re allergic to red raspberries then you should absolutely avoid raspberry ketone, but other similar allergies may also cause a reaction with raspberry ketone.
Is Raspberry Ketone Worth Trying?
Raspberry ketone is the type of supplement that has all the hype, but little to no support. While guys like Dr. Oz can use deceptive language like “miracle” or “wonder”, the truth is that raspberry ketone has very little evidence to support its’ claims.
Unfortunately, human studies are just non-existent. If we had human studies to look into, then we would know whether raspberry ketone is worth buying or not. However, we don’t, so raspberry ketone cannot be a viable solution.
While we were hopeful about raspberry ketone, there just isn’t enough evidence to determine whether or not it’s a giant scam or not. We recommend you avoid raspberry ketone for the time being and consider a more proven weight loss solution like garcinia cambogia.
As soon as raspberry ketone studies are released, we’ll update our post to reflect the new data. Hopefully, we’ll know more about the true power of raspberry ketone within the next few months. Until then, you’re probably better off looking into garcinia cambogia or forskolin as a weight loss aid.