When it comes to weight loss, everyone has an opinion of what works and what doesn’t, what’s safe and what’s unsafe. One can easily drown in the plethora of information on all the tips and trends available as far as diet and exercise are concerned, and it can be quite overwhelming.
Rest assured, before you try anything remotely new and even slightly controversial, you will want to do your research first. Transdermal patches certainly fall into that category, so we’ve done some research to help you navigate your way through the mud and muck of information.
What Are They? How Do They Work?
A patch that you wear that helps you lose weight? How can that be? Most of these patches contain herbal ingredients that are absorbed through the skin. They’re usually worn on a part of the body where absorption isn’t prevented by things like hair or fat, like on an ankle or wrist. Once applied, the patch is said to sway the body’s metabolism by affecting the hormones involved with managing weight and reducing the appetite. A new patch is needed every day, and results can be seen (usually) over a few months.
So… Is It Safe?
Typically for things like this, we look for FDA approval. However, because weight loss patches are herbal by nature, the FDA only records data regarding the remedy, but does not regulate it. Since we cannot look to the FDA for a general guidelines, one must look at the way the patch works to determine whether or not it’s safe for them. You should bear in mind that just because the patch is plant based and natural, doesn’t make it safe for human use.
The two main mechanisms of action for the patch are reduction in appetite and increase of metabolism. Beyond that, some patches promise to increase energy levels, lower blood pressure, improve alertness, among other things; the problem here, is that most of these patch companies have checked out as fraudulent by the US Federal Trade Commission, and that doesn’t paint their other patch relatives for weight loss in a positive light.
To make matters a little more iffy, the patches are not clearly labeled, so you’re never quite sure exactly what’s going in the body. Natural or not, this can be risky, especially when you pair it with other health conditions.
The bottom line is – as a general rule of thumb, fast weight loss schemes that don’t involve diet and exercise are typically fruitless at best. Pay close attention to the weight loss testimonies you’ve heard from patch wearers… did they all factor in an overall healthier lifestyle, or were they relying fully on the patch? Talk to your doctor before utilizing any type of patch for weight loss, and never under estimate the power of good, old fashioned, diet and exercise.
Try it if you must (after talking to a doctor), but proceed cautiously as there is clearly a very unproven safety record.
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Would you use a weight loss patch?