Metabolism booster pills help you burn calories without exercising. Many products make this claim, but only a few ingredients are actually effective, according to research from the University of Göttingen Medical School, Germany and presented at the July 2010 International Congress on Obesity in Stockholm, Sweden. Metabolism booster pills contain ingredients that can cause an allergic or other adverse reaction, so consult your doctor before taking them.
Your metabolism consists of all the physical and chemical processes in your body. This includes digesting food, respiration and blood circulation. The two types of metabolism are anabolic and catabolic. During anabolic metabolism your body builds compounds, such as combining amino acids to make proteins. During catabolic processes your body breaks down compounds, like when it converts fat to energy. The faster your metabolism, the more calories you burn while resting.
Manufacturers of chromium supplements claim their products help you lose weight by boosting your metabolism of fats and carbohydrates. However, studies done on healthy people who took chromium supplements do not support this theory, according to a review of existing scientific studies from the Harvard Medical School and reported in the November 2004 issue of "American Family Physician." Additionally, a study done on obese diabetics by the Statistics Collaborative in Washington, D.C. and reported in the July 2002 issue of the "American Journal of Clinical Nutrition" found no conclusive evidence to link chromium supplements with increased metabolism.
Chili Pepper, Green Tea and Calcium
Some metabolism booster pills really work. A dietary supplement made from capsaicin -- a bioactive ingredient in chili peppers, green tea extract, calcium and the amino acid tyrosine -- can increase your metabolism by 2 percent, according to a study by the Royal Veterinary and Agricultural University in Denmark and reported in the June 2005 issue of the "European Journal of Clinical Nutrition." In the study, 19 overweight men took this dietary supplement for seven days. The researchers found the subjects' metabolism increased in response to the supplement by almost 50 calories per day.
Caffeine and Green Tea
High caffeine consumption is associated with boosting your metabolism, according to information from Maastricht University in the Netherlands and reported in the July 2005 issue of the journal "Obesity Journal." In the study, 76 overweight people who recently completed a four-week weight loss program took a green tea-caffeine supplement for three months as part of the subsequent weight maintenance program. Some of these subjects were habitual caffeine users. The researchers concluded the supplement boosted the metabolism of low caffeine users, who got better weight loss results during the weight maintenance phase. But, it did not boost the metabolism of habitual caffeine users.
- "European Journal of Clinical Nutrition"; Bioactive Food Stimulants Increase Energy Expenditure and Fat Oxidation: Effect on 24-Hour Energy Expenditure and Fat Oxidation; A. Belza et al.; June 2005
- "Obesity Journal"; Body Weight Loss and Weight Maintenance in Relation to Habitual Caffeine Intake and Green Tea Supplementation; M.S. Westerterp-Plantenga, et al.; July 2005
- "American Family Physician"; Common Dietary Supplements for Weight Loss; Robert B. Saper; November 2004
- "American Journal of Clinical Nutrition"; Glucose and Insulin Responses To Dietary Chromium Supplements: A Meta-Analysis; Michelle D. Althuis, et al.; July 2002
- University of Hawaii: Metabolism
- EurekAlert!; New Research Finds No Evidence That Popular Slimming Supplements Facilitate Weight Loss; July 12, 2010