Citrus Fruit Extract May Help With Weight Loss
Carrying extra weight, especially abdominal fat, is a risk factor for metabolic syndrome. A recent study suggests that taking a supplement composed of extracts from red orange, grapefruit, sweet orange, and guarana may reduce abdominal fat and reduce waist and hip circumference.
Participants in the study included 95 overweight middle class adults between the ages of 22 and 45. Over the course of 12 weeks, half of the group took the 450 mg citrus fruit extract supplement twice daily with meals while the other half took a placebo.
The supplement contained 20% of total flavanones, 90% of total polyphenols, and between 1% and 3% of natural caffeine.
At the conclusion of the study, the supplement group had a 5.71% reduction in waist circumference, a 4.71% reduction in hip size, and a 9.73% reduction in abdominal fat. The placebo group, in comparison, had reductions of 1.56%, 1.35%, and 3.18%, respectively.
The researchers also noted a 14% reduction in oxidative stress and a 22.87% reduction in C-reactive protein, a marker of inflammation, in the supplement group.
Researchers from Fytexia in France conducted the study. It was published online ahead of print on April 3, 2013, in Phytotherapy Research.
In addition to helping with weight loss, the nutrients and antioxidants in citrus fruits have been linked to improved skin appearance, lower blood pressure, and reducing the risk of stroke. These health benefits are most often attributed to the high vitamin C and polyphenol (a type of antioxidant) levels in the fruits.
Citrus fruits make a great snack and can be easily integrated into your diet by adding them to cereal or yogurt in the morning, drinking them in smoothies, or adding them to your dessert.