We’ve all seen the ads. Especially the ones that claim to help you lose many pounds in just a few weeks. And we do get tempted to try them out. But can weight loss pills like Hydroxycut help you lose weight? Or are they dangerous and misleading? There are several scientific research and Hydroxycut reviews are available online, which can enrich your knowledge about this supplement.

Read on to know more about Hydroxycut and the science behind it.

What is Hydroxycut?

Hydroxycut is a brand of weight loss supplements that has many products like pills, shakes, tablets and gummies in the market. Their flagship product is Hydroxycut ProClinical, which contains caffeine that is supposed to boost your metabolism and cause weight loss.

The other ingredients in these supplements are lady’s mantle extract (Alchemilla Vulgaris), wild olive extract (Olea Europaea), komijn extract (Cuminum Cyminum) and wild mint extract (Vaccinium Myrtillus). It also contains various fruit extracts, calcium and vitamin C.

The Hydroxycut Hardcore line of products contain Coffea canephora robusta, a green coffee extract that they claim can reduce the amount of sugar absorbed in the body and thus cause weight loss. These products also contain caffeine, yohimbine, cayenne pepper and some other root and herb derived ingredients.

Does Hydroxycut work as weight reduction supplement?

The makers of Hydroxycut claim that the blend of various ingredients in these supplements helps in weight loss. Their website refers to two studies that have shown a positive effect of these weight loss supplements.

In one study, people who took C. canephora robusta for 60 days lost around 10.95 pounds, while the placebo group lost only 5.4 pounds on an average. Both groups were on a low-calorie diet.

Another study eight-week showed that people who took C. canephora robusta lost 3.7 pounds, while the placebo group lost only 1.25 pounds.

Note: These studies have not been published in any scientific journal and have not been peer-reviewed.

Unfortunately, there have not been any independent studies that have tested the active ingredients of Hydroxycut individually other than caffeine.

Many studies have shown that caffeine can boost metabolism by 3 to 11 percent and enhance fat burning by 10 to 29 percent (1,2). Unfortunately, these effects are short-term, and over a period people develop a tolerance to caffeine (3).

One study has been done to see the effects of the four herbs (lady’s mantle extract, wild olive extract, komijn extract and wild mint extract) used in Hydroxycut for weight loss.

When a combination of these herbs was fed to chicken and rats, the body weight gain of the chickens reduced by 20 percent and there was a significant increase in the metabolic rate of the rats (4).

Does Hydroxycut Hardcore work?

Many of the ingredients in the Hydroxycut Hardcore range of supplements have been tested individually. The green coffee bean extract has been tested during numerous studies. While some studies have observed that this active ingredient helps reduce body mass and body fat, others studies showed no effect (5, 6,7).

In another study done on soccer players, yohimbine supplementation was effective in causing fat loss in the athletes (8). Cayenne pepper also seems to increase satiety and hence reduce fat intake in the subjects of a study (9).

While individually many of the ingredients of Hydroxycut Hardcore seem to help in fat reduction, there has not been a study on all the ingredients together.

Hydroxycut dose and side effects

Hydroxycut has been in the market for over twenty years. Over the years, the formulation of this weight loss supplement has undergone many changes due to various medical safety issues.

Originally Hydroxycut contained a product called Ephedra. This powerful stimulant was banned by the FDA in 2004 due to its serious side effects. The side effects of Ephedra caused the death of 155 people.

In 2009 Hydroxycut recalled all its products after reports of severe side effects including liver poisoning (10).

The company came back to the market the next year with a brand new and supposedly much safer formulation. Unfortunately, even the latest formulation has some severe side effects like ulcerative colitis, constriction of cerebral arteries and gastrointestinal bleeding (11, 12,13).

Hydroxycut Hardcore also contains a high dosage of caffeine which can be harmful to those who are sensitive to it.

The company recommends that you increase the dosage of the supplements slowly. According to them, you can start with one tablet three times a day and then move to two tablets three times a day. The dosage recommendation varies from product to product.

Keep in mind that higher dosage can lead to even more severe side effects.

Over to you on Hydroxycut

Considering the various side effects of Hydroxycut, it is better to be cautious and avoid these supplements. Hydroxycut may help you lose some weight, but it has numerous side effects. The safest way to lose weight and to keep it off in the long term is to follow a healthy diet and exercise.

Even the labels of Hydroxycut mention that anyone under 18 years of age should not take these supplements and that you should seek medical attention if any unusual symptoms occur. Also, if you are being treated for a medical condition, you should seek your doctor’s advice before using Hydroxycut.