Phenphedrine Review: Its Effects and Side Effects
By the looks of things, Phenphedrine appears to be brought to us by the same anonymous retailers that introduced us to such dubious weight loss favorites as Fenphedra and Nuphedragen. The last two products sport nearly identical formulations—and Phenphedrine features the same core group of ingredients, plus a couple of extras.
What’s The Danger Of Doing Business With Anonymous Retailers? Why is it important that you be extremely wary of doing business with companies that refuse to reveal who they are (The Phenphedrine sales site—like the Fenphedra and Nuphedragen sites—reveal absolutely nothing about who is “behind” them)?
That’s because the primary reason for anonymity is to make it easier to avoid accountability to the consumer. It makes it very difficult for you to receive a refund if you’re unsatisfied with the product. And how do you complain to the regulatory bodies if you don’t know with whom you are doing business?
In this case—because the web sites of all three products (Phenphedrine, Fenphedra and Nuphedragen) are nearly identically formatted, and since Phenphedrine is highly recommended on the “faux” review site, SyberVison, this product is most likely the creation of BlackStone Nutrition / Garrett Devore Labs—companies with outrageously bad customer service records, reams of customer complaints and even a lawsuit that alleges…
“…SyberVision and Blackstone Nutrition conspire to deceive consumers through Web sites that post bogus “product reviews” that defame competitors and violate trademarks…”
For more information on this company, including links to sites with customer complaints, please click here! (This page open in a new window so you do not lose your place).
That said, what is in Phenphedrine?…
1. DiCaffeine Malate: Caffeine is a common ingredient to most fat burners and weight loss supplements. It cheaply and easily addresses the issue of fatigue common to dieters and non dieters alike. And, it does offer established weight loss benefits, mild though they may be (see Am J Clin Nutr. 1989 Jan;49(1):44-50, Am J Clin Nutr. 1980 May;33(5):989-97).
However, there is no evidence to suggest this form of caffeine (which is bonded with malic acid) is any more effective than the regular stuff, despite the claims of various retailers.
2. Caffeine Anhydrous: This is the same drug sold over-the-counter as “No-Doz,” “Vivarin,” etc. The discussion of caffeine in reference to di-caffeine malate applies here, too.
3. Hops: According to the sales copy, this ingredient…
“…produces a mild stimulant effect which then triggers the body to relax.”
Stimulants cause the body to relax? Who knew? Not really sure why this ingredient is here, although it has been studied—along with valerian—as a possible sleep aid. So maybe it is a “relaxant.”
4. Green Select Phytosome (green tea extract): There’s no doubt, green tea is a great supplement, showing some real benefits for weight loss. Nonetheless, “real” doesn’t mean “dramatic.” For example, in one widely cited study, men consuming 690mg green tea catechins in beverage form lost nearly twice as much weight and fat as did men consuming a low-catechin control beverage. That’s a genuine difference… but in real terms, it meant that the test group lost an average of 5.3 pounds over 12 weeks, while the controls lost 2.9 pounds.
Another study found that green tea and caffeine (from guarana) together increased 24 energy expenditure by an average of 750kJ. That’s only about 180 calories (kcal). This is significant, yes… but in real terms, it’s only about 20% of the deficit you could create by knocking 500 calories off your diet, and adding 45-60 minutes of moderate exercise (approx. 400 calories). It’s a decent little boost, but that’s all it is.
Ok, but what about Green Select Phytosome? It’s a special, proprietary extract that – according to the description on the Phenphedrine site – yields results far superior than the studies noted above…
“Green Select Phytosome Green Tea is patented and clinically proven to help you lose weight. In a recent clinical trial, the average dieter lost over 30 pounds in just 90 days. That’s 20 pounds more than the placebo group.”
Ok, let’s talk about that clinical trial… it’s actually published in a peer-reviewed journal, albeit one that’s devoted to “Alternative Medicine” – a status that almost certainly has an influence on the rigor of the peer-review process. This more “relaxed” attitude can be seen in the paper itself… although the numbers are correctly reported on the manufacturer’s (Indena’s) web site…
One hundred patients affected by overweight and obesity have been treated with 150 mg of Greenselect® Phytosome® twice daily (300 mg/day). During the study, all patients (treated and placebo) followed a low caloric diet (1250-1350 Kcal for women and 1650-1750 Kcal for men) distributed in at least 4 meals per day.
Parameters such as body weight, body mass index, waistline, total cholesterol, basal glycemia and total triglycerides were measured at the beginning, after 45 days and after 90 days (end of the study).
The average weight loss was of 6 kg in the diet only group and 14 kg in the treated group. Accordingly, relevant results have been reported in terms of body mass index, waistline and blood parameters.
…the account obscures the fact that no actual placebo was used for the control (diet alone) group – it was diet only, or diet plus MonCam (the name of the actual commercial product used).
This is a serious methodological issue, as it’s well-known that people respond strongly to pills, particularly those given in a clinical setting. And the study write up makes no mention of blinding, either – how the researchers interact with the subjects and set expectations is critical. That’s why placebo-controlled trials are also typically “double-blind” – that is, neither the subject nor the experimenter knows which treatments being dispensed are the “real” or “dummy” ones. That way, the experimenter cannot subtly (or overtly) influence the subjects’ behavior.
Placebo-controlled, double-blind studies are the “gold standard.” This one fell short, and inexplicably so, since it would not have been difficult to add this extra layer of care. Thus, this study is suggestive, but far from conclusive.
In the light of past research on green tea, it’s easy to believe that Green Select Phytosome had some positive effect on the subjects’ weight loss, but until a better-controlled study is done, it’s impossible to say if it really is a superior alternative to other standardized green tea extracts as a weight loss supplement ingredient.
5. Chromax: This is a proprietary form of chromium picolinate, produced by Nutrition 21. The Phenphedrine write up states…
“In one clinical study, subjects consumes 365 less calories per day with Chromax. Subjects also reduced hunger levels by 24%.”
There’s something similar noted on the Nutrition 21 site, although it’s less specific:
“In a study conducted by researchers at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center, subjects taking 1000 mcg of chromium as Chromax chromium picolinate saw a reduction in carbohydrate cravings, appetite and caloric intake by as much as 25 percent over an eight-week period.”
Nonetheless, the Nutrition 21 summary is more informative – and more honest – than the Phenphedrine version. Note the phrases “by as much” and “over an eight-week period.”
The study is here. As I would expect from Pennington, it’s pretty meticulous. And it contains details NOT reported in either summary, such as…
“The primary objective of this study was to evaluate the effect of CrPic on food intake in healthy, overweight, adult women who reported craving carbohydrates.”
Emphasis mine. Thus, they looked at a specific population of overweight women. In addition, the measured calorie reductions occurred only in the laboratory; were not seen in full until the 8 weeks was up; and did NOT result in any meaningful weight loss – just a skosh over a pound.
“Moreover, participants receiving CrPic lost a small amount of weight (0.5 kg) over this 8-week study, which suggests they may have also reduced their food intake outside of the laboratory. However, participants receiving CrPic lost a smaller amount of weight than would be expected based on the difference in food intake (i.e., 210 kcal) between the two groups during their final (week 8) food test day. This suggests that participants receiving CrPic may not have maintained a consistent reduction in energy intake throughout the entire 8-week period.”
Emphasis mine (again). So much for that 365 calories/day.
This is not to say that Chromax – or chromium supplementation in general – is useless for weight loss. But a) there are negative as well as positive studies to consider; and b) there’s exactly nada in any of the positive studies to support claims that it can help users lose “serious weight fast.”
6) Phenylethylamine (PEA): An amphetamine-related chemical commonly found in chocolate, you’ll find phenylethylamine in many fat burners these days. Although retailers claim this chemical promotes pleasure and euphoria, for the most part it’s a useless addition to any formula.
That’s because the vast majority of any phenylethylamine you consume is metabolized by the enzyme monamine oxidase, preventing all but the tiniest amounts from actually reaching the bloodstream.
The only fat burners in which phenylethylamine may have any impact are those that also contain natural monamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOI) to prevent the metabolism of this ingredient. Unfortunately, there aren’t any in this formula.
So there you have it, the Phenphedrine formula in a nutshell.
So what’s the verdict?
This is definitely going to be a product that will get you wired. It contains a solid whack of caffeine, so anyone sensitive to stimulants needs to be careful—and probably avoid—this product.
If you’re wondering if Phenphedrine is a scam, that really depends on what your definition of a “scam” is.
First, it’s way overpriced. This product is not worth close to $70 a bottle—there is absolutely nothing in it to justify this price. You can buy well-thought-out commercially available products for close to half of this—check our recommendations for more!
It’s also over-hyped, and the claims made for it are not supported by any credible science.
But the same can be said for the majority of products on the market. Additionally, it appears to be retailed by a group of rogues who have a deplorable customer service record.
Obviously then, this isn’t a product we’d recommend.