BioQuest BetaStax Review: An Extreme Weight Loss Catalyst?
BioQuest’s BetaStax is a popular fat burner claiming to be a “Precision Multi-Pathway Extreme Weight-Loss Catalyst”, and boasts “the most exciting technology of its kind.”
Well, let’s have a look at the formula and find out. BetaStax contains…
1. Vitamin B1: Also known as thiamin, this B-vitamin is thought to help regulate appetite.
2. Chromemate® (chromium polynicotinate): Chromium plays an important role in proper insulin function and blood sugar maintenance and thus, is a regular addition to most weight loss supplements. However, clinical evidence validating its weight loss effects are contradictory, although this form of chromium is probably the one to experiment with at this time.
3. Xanthicore™ Proprietary Blend: A 768 mg proprietary blend (a full day 4-cap dosage contains 1536 mg) of the following…
- CLA (conjugated linoleic acid): A recent meta analysis (see American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Vol. 85, No. 5, 1203-1211, May 2007) concluded that a dose of 3.2 grams/day, CLA…
“…produces a modest loss of body fat in humans.”
Unfortunately, BetaStax contains nowhere near the recommended dosage of CLA; a full day’s dose of Xanthicore contains only slightly more than 1.5 grams ingredients —and there are three other ingredients still unaccounted for. In other words, if Xanthicore contained nothing but CLA, it would take over 2 days worth of capsules to deliver a helpful dose of the ingredient.
- Caffeine: A well known thermogenic, with well-established, but relatively mild weight loss benefits.
- Advantra Z® (synephrine, citrus aurantium): Since the “outlawing” of ephedra, synephrine has been the ingredient of choice as its replacement. This, despite evidence indicatingsynephrine has only the mildest of fat-burning characteristics.The most positive study I could find was performed at the University of McGill in Montreal and published in Obesity Research (Obes Res. 2005 Jul;13(7):1187-94). It concluded…
“CA (citrus aurantrium) alone increased thermogenesis, on average, by 4% (52), a response that is statistically significant but not necessarily clinically significant, representing an average 1 kg over 6 months.”
Nonetheless, anecdotal evidence suggests it may be useful as an appetite suppressant, so it may offer some small amount of value to this, and other products which “boast” this ingredient in their product profiles.
- Vinpocetine: Derived from periwinkle, this ingredient finds its way into fat burners like BetaStax and pre-workout body building formulas for its concentration and focus-enhancing characteristics.
4. PureWaySlim® Proprietary Blend: An invention of Innovation Labs, the PureWaySlim® blend contains a 250 mg combination of 10 ingredients; Vegetable Wax Extract, Fenugreek Extract, Astragalus Extract, Tribulus Terrestris Extract, Magnolia Extract, French Lilac Extract, Jojoba Extract, Phellodendron Amurense Extract, Eurycoma Longifolia Jack Extract and Rice Bran Extract.
The BetaStax advertising boasts of a positive clinical study performed on the PureWaySlim® compound at a major U.S. university.
Of course, the “prestigious” university isn’t actually named, which means we can’t confirm the study took place, or verify the results for ourselves.
The first question I would ask, for example, is… “does the amount of PureWaySlim® (250mg) inlcuded in the BetaStax formula correspond to the amount used in the study?”
The advertising also states that the study is “PubMed pending”—and it has remained so for the many months I’ve been checking on this product prior to this review. Since PubMed is a database of peer-reviewed journals and related medical publications—not a journal in and of itself (studies appear in PubMed because the journals they’re published in have been accepted for inclusion in the database), this is a little misleading.
In other words, if the journal this “study” is to be published in is accepted for inclusion into the PubMed database, the retailers certainly know the name of the journal, and could share the name of it with us.
They haven’t done so. That’s not exactly confidence inspiring.
Innovation Lab’s web site is no better either; its web site makes all sorts of claims, but provides exactly ZERO in the way of documented clinical proof.
Now I don’t want to sound cynical, but the onus is on the supplement retailers and the suppliers of these “proven” proprietary blends to back up their claims of effectiveness with actual, documented evidence. Neither has provided any in this case. The value of a claim that cannot be authenticated (i.e., a study performed at a major “un-named” university) is no different than no claim at all. So until this study is actually published in a reputable journal, or we can review it ourselves to critique its methodology and conclusions, the value of the PureWaySlim® element of this product can only be described as “indeterminate.”
So where does that leave BetaStax?
What you’re left with is chromium-caffeine-synephrine blend, an under-dosed amount of CLA, and the PureWaySlim®, the value of which is impossible to determine. Not exactly a weight loss revolution in a bottle.
To be fair though, Betastax is pretty reasonably priced; a full month’s worth of product costs less than $30. Thus, it won’t put a hole in your wallet, should you choose to experiment with it. I, however, remained unconvinced of its value. If you feel differently, let us know in the comments.