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02.02.2009


CLA and EGCG promising super stack in small trial

It's a small but nevertheless revealing experiment, this study carried out by psychiatrists at the University of Toronto on the effect of a supplement that combines CLA and a green-tea extract. Patients on anti-psychotic medicines who took the stack did not gain weight and they gained muscle.

Anti-psychotics inhibit neurotransmitters. The old generation of these drugs blocks the dopamine receptors, and does a pretty good job. In fact, they do their job so well that users usually feel pretty awful. The new generation sabotages just about all neurotransmitters in the brain, but doesn't block them completely. As a result the users don't feel so bad.

CLA and EGCG promising super stack in small trial
The disadvantage of these atypical anti-psychotic drugs is that the users tend to put on weight, in the form of fat. According to studies, patients put on an average of four to five kilograms in the first eight weeks.

That's why the Canadians wondered what the effect of the abs+ supplement, produced by Genuine Health, would be on the body composition of psychiatric patients taking the atypical anti-psychotic drug Quetiapine. Quetiapine blocks the receptors for serotonin, dopamine and histamine as well as the alpha-adrenergic receptors. Abs+ contains green tea and CLA. Those who follow the manufacturer's dosage advice get a daily 3400 milligrams of CLA and 270 milligrams of EGCG. The results are interesting, as the table below shows.


CLA and EGCG promising super stack in small trial


Body fat percentages fell, and the percentage of the lean body mass increased. That's why only one test subject actually lost weight (the top one in the table). The second test subject maintained the same weight, and the two at the bottom gained weight.

Note that the test subjects already had fairly high body fat percentages when the trial started.


CLA and EGCG promising super stack in small trial


In the table above BFM stands for body fat mass, and LBM for lean body mass. The figures in the columns under BFM and LBM are in pounds.

The first test subject in the table gained three kilograms of muscle and lost five kilograms of fat in just under six months. The second one gained over two kilograms of lean body mass and lost over two kilograms of fat in fourteen weeks. Test subject number three gained more than five kilograms of lean body mass in ten weeks and gained a small amount of fat. Test person number four gained just under five kilograms of lean body mass in twenty weeks and lost a few grams of fat.

The researchers are aware that a group of four test subjects is incredibly small. Nevertheless they regard their findings as relevant. Their test subjects are sick people who do not do any sports and most of whom are not in a state to be able to think about eating healthily. "We set out to follow these patients with the expectation that there would be only increases in body fat mass and body fat percentages, with little to no change in lean body mass."

In that respect the results are surprisingly positive.

Caution is nonetheless advised. The leader of the research team, Alan Logan, has worked for over five years as an advisor for Genuine Health, the maker of the supplement studied, abs+. Some supplements manufacturers have a way of managing to lose less attractive research results to the paper shredder [and the researchers as well if necessary Ed.], so it's just possible that the study only describes a small number of best-responders. Fraud in the science world isn't that difficult.

Sources:
Lipids Health Dis. 2007 May 3;6:14.