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“Is It Water Loss or Weight Loss?”, Asks Toronto Naturopath

Posted By on 8 March 2018

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Dandelion is a safer diuretic than most.
Dandelion is a safer diuretic than most.

Have you seen those ads for herbal formulas, diet pills and candies and magic fat burning (usually Chinese) miracle diet teas that guarantee a loss of 10 pounds in just a few days? Usually, these products work but the problem is that they cause a loss of water weight, not actual fat. The minute you stop using these products, you will gain all of the weight you lost back. You should also never use them long term as they can cause unpleasant, potentially dangerous side effects such as dehydration, dizziness cardiac problems.

As soon as the body regains its natural balance (either through the consumption of water or by stopping taking the supplement), the weight returns. Meaningful, permanent weight loss requires a loss of body fat, not water.

Be Wary Of Diet Teas And Pills That Contain Caffeine

If you are looking at at the label of a weight loss product and are trying to figure out if it is actually a diuretic and not really a “fat burner” or a miracle ingredient – look for caffeine. Always remember that the ingredients in any type of product must be listed from “the most to the least.” If caffeine is listed in one of the first three or our ingredients you are definitely looking at a product that causes you to lose pounds through the loss of water.

Sometimes though it can be very difficult to find caffeine listed as that on a label. This is particularly tricky if you are looking at a box of Chinese Tea that is advertising itself as being helpful to lose weight. Caffeine may be concealed in an ingredient such as green tea. Another issue is that something like caffeine is often advertised a “fat burning herb” in these products. There is no such thing as a true “fat burning herb” and furthermore, many of the herbs and chemicals that are described as so can cause an increase in heart rate, breathing, and other functions. This is not “fat burning” it is simply stress for the body. Mainly all caffeine does is push water out of your body.

Beware of Teas and Pills With “Fat Burning Herbs”

Caffeine is not the only herb that is marketed this way. Another, that sounds very organic, is the herb Buchu. Buchu is an herb that is native to South Africa and is a powerful diuretic. Its main side effect is dehydration dizziness and fatigue.

Similar to caffeine is the Kola Nut. This is a powerful diuretic that is to be taken with caution. It is a component in diet teas but also in health or energy drinks that are developed to give people’s stamina a big boost. It is made from the same plant that is used to make cocaine. The side effects are excessive thirst, nervousness, anxiety, restlessness, frequent urination, and urges to go on an empty bladder, overstimulation, mania, and insomnia. In addition, kola nut may supplement your natural energy levels to the extent that you can become addicted to it.

Yet another dangerous diuretic that is often included in both western and Asian weight loss teas and formulas is Horse Chestnut. Horse Chestnut is an ancient remedy for individuals with blood pressure problems and for varicose veins. It is a powerful diuretic that should never be used more than a day or two. Its main side effect is dehydration, which can cause dizziness, rapid heartbeat, and disassociation.

The weight loss herb Hoodia is also technically as a diuretic. Although it boosts your energy levels it also has a cleansing effect. Hoodia can work for you as long as you are aware that part of the plant’s effect is to make you forget entirely about drinking or eating. You won’t crave so much as a drop of water, which can be dangerous for your health. Drinking half your body weight in ounces a day of water will aid your metabolism in breaking down fat cells and flushing out toxins while you are taking hoodia. Hoodia can facilitate rapid weight loss but be aware the first phase of weight loss is a great deal of water loss at first.

If you are going to take diuretic dandelion is probably one of the safest herbs to take. Dandelion contains two diuretic chemicals,eudesmanolides, and germacranolides, as well as the mineral potassium, which helps to regulate water balance in the balance. Also remember to drink less carbonated and caffeinated drinks while you are taking these herbs to avoid unpleasant side effects like stomach cramps, diarrhea or further dehydration.

For more information about healthy weight loss that lasts for the long-term, nutrition or to book a consultation about anti-aging, naturopathic testing, weight loss programs or any health issue you may be experiencing, visit the Pinewood Natural Healthcare Centre website that has a list of full services and products at www.pinewoodhealth.ca or call our Toronto Office at (416)-656- 8100. We also have an office in Pickering, Ontario at (905)-427-0057. You can also email us at info@pinewoodhealth.ca and we would be happy to answer any question that you have about our holistic health services.

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