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Diabetes

Supplements for weight loss

03/02/2009

Question:

Hi, I share the frustration of an earlier questioner. I have type 1 diabetes and hypothyroid. About 3 months ago, I started walking brisky for about 20 minutes 4-5 times per week. A month ago a got a Wii fit and started doing their aerobic exersizes for about 3 hours per week. I still have not been able to lose weight.

A friend suggestion I try supplements: pyruvate, CLA-tonalin, and L-carnitine. Do any of these actually help? do they interact with insulin or levothyrox? thanks

Answer:

I am not familiar with CLA-tonalin.  Pyruvate and carnitine are both normal intermediates in metabolic pathways, pyruvate in essentially all cells and L-carnitine in animals. To the best of my knowledge, I don't believe there is clinical trial data to ascertain whether these compounds are both safe and effective for weight loss.  Given that they are normal endogenous metabolites, I would doubt that either would ever be tested in that manner.  Many claims are made for such products on the basis of whether they "make sense" but few are substantiated by properly conducted experiments that are applicable to people.

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Response by:

Robert M Cohen, MD Robert M Cohen, MD
Professor of Clinical Medicine
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati