Lipozene is yet another weight loss supplement that features claims of effectiveness, but falls short when it comes to providing clinical proof.
Personal trainers should alert their clients to this sham and consumers should save their money.
During a weekend edition of ESPN’s SportCenter I saw a commercial for a weight-loss product called Lipozene. The advertisement featured the typical marketing claims that we’ve come to expect from the companies that pimp these products, but with a bit of a twist. Rather than pump the hard-body angle, the Lipozene folks dressed up their ad with a contrived clinical presentation.
I visited the Lipozene web site and was really underwhelmed. Despite the claims made by the Obesity Research Institute (ORI) – the company name that’s branded on the packaging – that Lipozene is “clinically proven to reduce body fat,” no research is provided on the web site. Although there is plenty of information about how to buy the product, the ORI provides scant reason to buy their product.
What the Obesity Research Institute does tell us is that their supplement contains Glucomannan, a 100% natural fiber from the Konjac Root and that this substance, “creates a dietary fiber sponge that makes you feel full, thus reducing caloric intake and adding fiber to your diet.” However, actual clinical data supporting these claims is not available on the Lipozene web site and given the dearth of credible data for glucomannan – except for its effectiveness as a laxative – this is not a surprise.
What’s even more interesting is what I found when I did a Google search for the Obesity Research Institute. It seems that the good folks that are responsible for Lipozene have a checked past. Back in June of 2005 the Federal Trade Commission reached a settlement with the Obesity Research Institute over the false and misleading claims made in the marketing several of their products, among them FiberThin and Propolene, 2 weight loss supplements that contained – you guessed it – glucomannan.
The ORI was also shilling other weight loss snake oils that contained green tea, chromium and bitter orange that the FTC but the kibosh on. As part of the FTC judgment the principals at the OBI were ordered to pay a $1.5 million consumer redress and had an additional $41 million judgment suspended pending an investigation of their financial status.
More interesting are the details of the settlement “that permanently bars the defendants from making the challenged “Red Flag” claims and unsubstantiated claims for any weight-loss product, dietary supplement, food, drug, or device, or misrepresenting any scientific study for the purposes of marketing a dietary supplement.” It seems that the OBI folks are walking on pretty thin ice with their Lipozene advertising campaign.
If you haven’t seen it, check out one of their ads. Needless to say, Lipozene represents the worst of the worst when it comes to working the system in an attempt to take advantage of gullible consumers.
If you haven’t bought Lipozene, don’t, and if you have you can file a complaint with the FTC.