Review: Lipoban, The Fat Absorbing "Miracle" -

Review: Lipoban, The Fat Absorbing “Miracle”

Lipoban is no longer available, but at one time, it was a fat absorbing “miracle”, and the brainchild of well-known con man, Frank Sarcona. Mr Sarcona is no longer in business; he’s now serving 20 years in Federal US prison for defrauding 130,000 customers out of approximately 10 million dollars.

With Lipoban, of course.

As you can image, this certainly doesn’t bode well for Lipoban, but let’s discuss the product anyway. While it may no longer available, there are plenty of similar “fat blocking” and “fat trapping” weight loss products that make identical claims: of binding to fat (or acting like a “fat magnet”) and and then “flushing” it from the body.

So what does Lipoban contain?

Only one ingredient—something called chitosan. What is chitosan, exactly? From our glossary

“Chitosan is a material derived from shellfish exoskeletons with industrial, biomedical and agricultural applications.”

And what’s it supposed to do?

The claims of retailers selling chitosan-based diet pills are always the same; chitosan binds with fat and helps eliminate it from the body. This reduces your caloric intake, since the fat calories you consume are longer digested and deposited on your waistline. Ergo, you lose weight. In this, it’s similar to the drug Alli, or Xenical for example (although Alli/Xenical actually works… in a way).

There’s only 1 problem, and it’s the reason Mr Sarcona is doing his exercising on a field surrounded by razor-wire topped fences and guard towers…

Chitosan doesn’t appear to do much.

Yes, I know you may have seen videos and reviews indicating there is clinical evidence to support its use, but the fact is, that isn’t true. For instance…

This study indicated…

“The effect of chitosan on fat absorption is clinically negligible.”

This one concluded…

“Chitosan, however, has no effect on fecal fat excretion.”

This systematic review of controlled trials showed…

“Results obtained from high-quality trials indicate that the effect of chitosan on body weight is minimal and unlikely to be of clinical significance.”

I was only able to find one study that showed any positive results, and it combined chitosan with ascorbic acid (vitamin C) and was tested on 11 patients with Crohn’s disease. It had slightly better results…

“…oral administration of a chitosan and ascorbic acid mixture in patients with Crohn’s disease is tolerable and increases fecal fat excretion without affecting disease activity.”

It’s important to note that in the case of Crohn’s disease patients, dietary fat can worsen their condition. So while the studies performed on chitosan that I have provided here are looking for an energy imbalance (i.e., a reduction in calories), this one was designed to study the tolerability of the combination, and access whether chitosan had some fat binding activity. It did not access whether the fat binding effect was significant enough to bring about a calorie imbalance. Given that the overwhelming amount of clinical data to the contrary, it is an unlikely scenario.

What this means, essentially, is that chitosan-based “fat trapping” and “fat blocking” products aren’t going to do much for you. Well, that’s not entirely true. They will make their manufacturers richer, and make you poorer.

But they won’t make you slimmer.

If you must experiment, please, please, please don’t waste your money on a high priced product promising the world. You can buy chitosan for around $10 at This two week’s supply will give you enough time to assess the effectiveness of the product without costing you an arm and a leg. But don’t say I didn’t warn you…

Author: Paul

Paul Crane is the founder of His passions include supplements, working out, motorcycles, guitars... and of course, his German Shepherd dogs.

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