Hi Tech Pharmaceuticals Lipodrene SR Fat Burner Review
Manufactured by Hi-Tech Pharmaceuticals, Lipodrene SR supposedly represents “a culmination of over a decade of research and development.” Given this company’s highly questionable ethics, I very highly doubt that, but that’s neither here nor there, so let’s continue…
So what’s in Lipodrene?
Well, there’s green tea, a solid, “no-brainer” supplement with some decent research validating its effects on both metabolism and overall health (a full review of green tea is available here).
Hoodia gordonii also finds its way into Lipodrene, although its effectiveness is largely disputed at this time. That, and there’s a serious issue with obtaining a constant supply of this relatively rare, protected cactus (a full review of Hoodia gordonii is available here).
Lipodrene also contains…
1. Coryphantha macromeris extract: coryphantha macromeris is also a cactus, and although I did not find any double-blind, placebo controlled, randomized, peer reviewed studies verifying its effectiveness as a fat burner, it is a known stimulant. Perhaps even more interesting is that it is also a mild hallucinogenic. Check out this extract from PubMed for more information!)
2. Phenylethylamine (PEA): found in chocolate, phenylethylamine is responsible for that “chocolate high” some people experience — that sudden uplifting in mood and well-being. Phenylethylamine occurs naturally in the brain, and helps regulate feelings of attraction, excitement, giddiness, apprehension and euphoria. Structurally, phenylethylamine is very similar to amphetamine, and some individuals may even experience similar effects.
A stimulant as well, it is possible that phenylethylamine could elevate the metabolism and perhaps even increase satiety (fullness).
Unfortunately, there does not seem to be any solid evidence indicating this is the case at this time.
There’s another problem too; phenylethylamine is rapidly metabolised by the enzyme monamine oxidase, meaning very little of orally consumed PEA actually enters into the bloodstream.
To date, the best phenylethylamine-based fat burners (like Gaspari’s CytoLean) contain plenty of natural MAOI (monamine oxidase inhibitors). Theoretically, these ingredients prevent the breakdown of PEA, allowing more of it to enter the bloodstream. How well this works for elevating mood and boosting the metabolism has yet to be established in any credible study. Nonetheless, there are no MAOIs in the Lipodrene formula.
While the bulk of compilation is comprised of the first 4 ingredients, there’s also a 275 mg proprietary blend containing…
i. Citrus aurantium (standardized for synephrine): a chemical cousin to ephedra, it is theorized that this compound may stimulate the metabolism and encourage weight loss. Unfortunately, clinical evidence does not validate this theory. Check this extract about Citrus Aurantium from this PubMed abstract…
“An extensive search of MEDLINE, EMBASE, BIOSIS, and the Cochrane Collaboration Database identified only 1 eligible randomized placebo controlled trial, which followed 20 patients for 6 weeks, demonstrated no statistically significant benefit for weight loss, and provided limited information about the safety of the herb.”
To read more about synephrine and to view more related clinical references, read the synephrine review!
ii. Yohimbe: Yohimbine is the active compound of Yohimbe, which is derived from the bark of an African tree. Yohimbe is reported to facilitate muscle growth, and because of its effect on the central nervous system (Yohimbe acts upon alpha-2 adrenergic receptors), may encourage weight loss (studies indicating weight loss are promising but not revolutionary — see Isr J Med Sci. 1991 Oct;27(10):550-6).
Yohimbe isn’t a benign ingredient — people with high blood pressure or kidney disease should avoid Yohimbe containing products, as well as women who are, or who may become pregnant. There’s also some concern about combining Yohimbe with ephedra and other stimulants (could lead to variations in blood pressure levels) or antidepressants.
iii. Naringin: isolated from grapefruit, naringin helps extend and increase the effects of certain compounds, including caffeine. It also displays cholesterol lowering effects. A full review of naringin can be found here.
iv. Commiphora mukul (also known as guggul or guggulsterones): the standardized extract of a resin of a tree native to India. This resin has been used in Ayurvedic medicine for centuries. A study published in The Journal of Associations of Physicians in India in 1989 showed this substance to have a powerful effect in decreasing blood fats (called triglycerides) AND LDL cholesterol (that’s the “bad” cholesterol), while elevating levels levels of the good cholesterol “HDL.”
Additionally, guggulsterones may stimulate the thyroid gland, resulting in a positive effect upon the body’s main thyroid hormones, T3 and T4. Nonetheless, evidence suggests they are no weight loss miracle.
v. Coleus forskohlii: May have a positive effect on Cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP). cAMP is a “cellular regulator.” In other words, this compound camp is required to “spark” many intercellular processes. An increased concentration of camp can have such “total-body” effects such as raised thyroid hormone levels and increased fat burning.
Is there any evidence to validate its effects on weight loss? One study performed with 500 mg of ingredient standardized to 10% active ingredient (taken twice daily in 250 mg dosages) conlcuded…
“Results suggest that CF does not appear to promote weight loss but may help mitigate weight gain in overweight females with apparently no clinically significant side effects.”
This can hardly be described as dramatic.
vi. 5-hydroxytryptophan: 5-HTP is often used to treat mild depression on the premise that as a precursor to serotonin (a chemical neurotransmitter found in the brain). There is some evidence 5-HTP may be helpful as a diet aid (see Am J Clin Nutr. 1992 Nov;56(5):863-7, J Neural Transm. 1989;76(2):109-17), but only large doses (one study used 900 mg per day). Since 5-HTP is part of 275 mg blend, we can be sure it does little more than provide “label dressing” here.
Hi-Tech Pharmaceuticals, the makers of Lipodrene and Lipodrene SR are currently being indicted for a “generic pill fraud scheme.”
According to government investigators, Hi-Tech Pharmaceuticals manufactured generic versions of drugs (such as steroids as well as Viagra, Vioxx, Cialis, Ambien, Valium, Xanax and others) and sold them via the Internet, violating several U.S. laws.
You can read the details of the indictment here and here!
This sure doesn’t add much to the credibility of the claims this company makes for Lipodrene.
I’m not a fan of Lipodrene—the formula is nothing special, and the ethics and credibility of the company are highly suspect. The president of Hi-Tech Pharmaceuticals was recently sentenced to a 50-month jail sentence. Is this the sort of company you’d like to do business with?