Promises of miraculous fat burning capabilities have turned raspberry ketones into a multi-million dollar product. This compound found in red raspberries has been traditionally used by the perfume and manufactured food industries to produce a berry-like scent.
Health care providers have turned a curious eye to this “miracle drug” and found two studies in mice and one small study in humans to support its medical use. The human study evaluated the use of topical raspberry ketone cream on hair growth and skin elasticity. There are no human studies evaluating the use of this supplement as a weight loss aid.
Raspberry ketone supplements are not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration, so manufacturers are not required to produce clinical studies that prove its safety and efficacy, rather, they can make claims about its effectiveness without having the actual data to prove its merit.
Physicians and pharmacists utilize medications that have gone through large, placebo-controlled, blinded studies that provide scientific proof that a medication is both safe and effective. Applying this model to raspberry ketones, we have no proof (i.e. large placebo-controlled, blinded human studies) that tells us whether or not this supplement actually results in weight loss.
The prescription for weight loss remains the same, a reasonable diet with fruits and vegetables and 30 to 45 minutes of cardiovascular exercise at least 5 days per week. Until data becomes available, diet and exercise trumps raspberry ketones.