Clinitrim-5 Fat Burner Review: Does Clinitrim Boast 5 Clinically Proven Ingredients?
Clinitrim-5 is a fat burner based on 5 clinically proven ingredients, all of which have been “scientifically scrutinized by double blind, placebo controlled studies.”
As you’ve seen in other reviews, and as Elissa points out in this blog post, the words “studies have shown” are thrown around with alarming frequency by supplement retailers. Even more alarming is the fact that it is a rare occurrence indeed when a study is used in the correct context.
So let’s take a closer look at Clinitrim-5, and see whether it measures up to its claim, “lose 5 lbs in 5 days.”
First, let’s address the biggest problem with Clinitrim-5…
Although the ingredients are revealed, the size of the dosage is not, nor is the amount of each ingredient included in the formula. Sure, a retailer can legally disguise the amount of each specific compound included in the formula with a “proprietary formula” label.
But the retailers of Clinitrim-5 haven’t even bothered with that. So it’s impossible to know the strength and potency of the product. Nonetheless, since a serving size consists of only two caps, and since a percentage of individuals are unable to deal with overly large capsules, we’re probably limited to somewhere between 1,000 mg – 1500 mg of active ingredients per serving.
So what, you say?
On the contrary.
Knowing the size of the product’s dosage is important.
For instance, you’ll see that Clinitrim contains SuperCitriMax® — an exceptionally potent variation of hydroxycitric acid, or HCA.
The sales page then goes on to reference a clinical study validating SuperCitrimax’s effect on weight loss.
But if you check this study for yourself (see J Med. 2004;35(1-6):33-48), you’ll see that these results were obtained with 4666.7 mg of SuperCitrimax® (providing 2,800 mg HCA) divided into three daily doses.
If we’re correct in assuming a daily dosage of Clinitrim-5 contains around 3,000 mg of active ingredients, we can be pretty darn certain it contains nowhere near the amount of SuperCitriMax® demonstrated to be effective in the study highlighted so eagerly in the sales copy. After all, in addition to the SuperCitriMax®, there are 8 other ingredients included in this formula as well.
Several other ingredients have also demonstrated positive effects in preliminary studies. But frankly, they too need to be present in a significant amount — an amount very likely not present in Clinitrim-5…
- Glucomannan: Several clinical studies validate glucomannan’s ability to lower LDL cholesterol and blood lipid levels — as well as blood sugar levels (J Am Coll Nutr. 2003 Feb;22(1):36-42, Diabetes Care. 2000 Jan;23(1):9-14, Nutr Metab Cardiovasc Dis. 2005 Jun;15(3):174-80).There also appears to be some evidence validating glucomannan’s positive effect on weight loss (Int J Obes. 1984;8(4):289-93, Med Sci Monit. 2005 Jan;11(1):PI5-8)One study — the one referenced in the Clinitrim-5 advertising — showed that 1 gram of glucomannan, taken with 8 oz. of water one hour prior to meals (3 meals per day), has a significant influence on weight loss — almost 6 pounds of fat lost in two months, with no changes in eating habits (see Int J Obes. 1984;8(4):289-93).
Does Clinitrim-5 contain the 3 grams of glucomannan used in the study they reference? Considering the dosage size and the 8 other ingredients also included in this formula, I highly doubt it.
- 5-HTP: The studies I found did validate 5-HTP’s benefits for weight loss (see Am J Clin Nutr. 1992 Nov;56(5):863-7, J Neural Transm. 1989;76(2):109-17) . However, even 5-HTP needs to be consumed in significant amounts to be helpful. One study used 900 mg per day, and the other, 8 mg/kg/day (a 150-person weighs about 68 kg. To be compliant with the dosage of the second study, this person would require 544 mg of 5-HTP per day).
- 7-Keto: What’s promising about this ingredient is its positive effect on thyroid hormone levels in obese people — again, without any adverse effects of any kind (see Journal of Exercise Physiology, Volume 2, Number 4, October 1999, J Nutr Biochem. 2007 Sep;18(9):629-34. Epub 2007 Apr 5, Current Therapeutics, (7):435-442 2000).The dosage for these studies was 100 mg, given twice a day. Is there 200 mg of 7-Keto in the Clinitrim formula? It’s certainly possible, as it’s a relatively small dosage. But we really can’t know for sure.
- Guarana, Yerba Mate, and Damiana: Yep, there’s one positive study on this trio of ingredients (see J Hum Nutr Diet 14 (3): 243) but, it’s the same issue… how much does Clinitrim contain?
By now, I’m sure you’re beginning to see the problem. And it’s a common one — retailers often reference clinical studies to validate their products, but then include only a smattering of the ingredient shown to be helpful in that study. In the case of several ingredients in this product, that’s certainly the issue. Other ingredients may be included in the appropriate dosage, but without any real label data, its impossible to tell.
Are these ingredients effective at lower doses?
Retailers often argue that lower dosages of certain ingredients are acceptable when they are combined with the correct combination of other ingredients in a “precise matrix.” This “unique blend” of ingredients work together, they say, “in a synergistic fashion” providing benefits up and above the sum of their respective parts.
That’s a typical response to criticisms such as mine.
The only problem is that there is no clinical, scientific evidence that this is the case. And unless there is, this is mere speculation. And, since the retailer’s mandate is to sell us products, it’s not hard to see there’s a very significant conflict of interest here.
It’s impossible to assess what value, if any, Clinitrim offers to dieters. It certainly doesn’t contain anywhere near the correct dosage of several of its core ingredients shown effective in studies, and its claim — “lose 5 lbs. in 5 days” is certainly not something that can be validated by anything even vaguely resembling evidence.