Sunday, August 22, 2010

Ephedrine: New Study Confirms Metabolic Effects of Forbidden "Weight Loss"-Drug

Its August 2010, years after Ephedra has been banned from the supplement marked, the words "ephedrine" and "ECA" can still be heard, whenever people chat about weight loss supplements. A new study by Napolitano et al. (Napolitano. 2010) may explain why this is the case. Stated simply: Ephedrine works! But its effects on the basal metabolic rate is much less pronounced than some nostalgics would have it.
Figure 1: Mean differences and standard deviations of differences
between measures of fat, carbohydrate, and protein oxidation, made
overnight and over 23 hours, and repeated after a 24-hour or 14-day
interval. Untreated (placebo) subjects, n = 6. (
While the overall difference in energy expenditure appears negligible (+45.55kcal on the first day; +32.48kcal on day 14), it is interesting that there is a shift in substrate metabolism from carbohydrates to fatty acids within the 24 hour window after 3x15mg/day ephedrine administration.

The net effect of ephedrine (only) supplementation for 14 days on energy expenditure is specified by the scientists as follows:
The magnitude of the treatment effect was 3.0% of the group average untreated overnight energy expenditure for the acute response and 5.1% for the chronic response.
The energy expenditure increments were associated with increments in fat oxidation which reached significance when chronic treatment was compared to the untreated state. There were no significant effects of treatment on carbohydrate or protein oxidation.
Thus, the study only confirms conventional wisdom that: Ephedrin may help weight loss through
  1. a slight increase in metabolic rate
  2. a shift in substrate metabolism / increase in fatty acid oxidation
Although not investigated in this study, all dieters who ever used a product with the combination of Ephedrine + Caffeine + Aspirin (=ECA) mention a noticeable decrease in appetite and an increase in energy regardless of being in a caloric deficit. No wonder everything marketed as ECA-Stack, such as the new products containing "Ephedra Extract", which by the way have no ephedrine alkaloids, at all, sells like hot cakes, although most of these products are about as effective as a plain caffeine pill.

So, if you are looking for a solid fat burner, I'd rather chose one out of those > MAN Swagger, USP OxyElite, Iforce Adipoxil, RPN Alpha Burn, DCP, VPX Meltdown, VPX Redline Ultra Hardcore, Fusion Supplements Rocket Fuel. Experienced users may also look into stacking - an excellent and cheap option would be Fusion Supplements Rocket Fuel + RPN Alpha Burn