Some clinics offer lipotropic injections to help lose weight. Nonetheless, the efficacy and safety of these have not been studied in depth by researchers.
The lipotropic injection lipotropics include a mixture of various vitamins, minerals, and amino acids that people report helping them lose weight and fat.
Continue reading for more information on lipotropic injections, including ingredients, cost, dosage, and potential risks.
What are lipotropic injections?
Many people use lipotropic injections because weight loss clinics sell them as fat-burning treatments. Combined with a healthy diet and regular exercise, people who use lipotropic injections should easier lose fat.
Each clinic has its own particular type of injection, so the components can vary from clinic to clinic.
Lipotropes are substances that help remove fat from the liver and reduce fat production. Some of the more common lipotropies used by clinics include:
- vitamin B-12
Vitamin B-12 and methionine are essential nutrients required to control the fat and protein metabolism in the body. That said, researchers haven’t proven that taking doses above the normal amount of vitamin B-12 or methionine would actually help a person lose weight.
Researchers from Louisiana’s Pennington Biomedical Research Center found that limiting dietary methionine in people with metabolic syndrome caused improved digestion of fat. In this analysis, people who were in the control group and those who excluded methionine lost the same weight.
Another study showed that in females with polycystic ovary syndrome, a combination of diet, myoinositol, and D-chiroinositol may have accelerated weight and fat loss. Researchers, however, need to conduct additional studies to confirm the effects of inositol.
In lipotropic injections the drugs may not be effective in reducing a person’s weight or fat. While these substances may, theoretically, have important roles in fat metabolism, researchers are still unsure whether higher doses are beneficial for weight and fat loss.
Other clinics may introduce additional vitamins and amino acids that are believed by some practitioners to support additional weight loss.
Although there is limited research into lipotropic injections, researchers have studied the effects of plant-based foods as a source of lipotropic in rats. The researchers note that the main lipotropes of plants include:
Certain substances in plant foods— including fatty acids, starch, and flavonoids— may have lipotropic results too. This research was only investigating the influence of lipotropic substances in the diet. The researchers did not investigate the effects in lab rats of lipotropic injections.
Clinical trials where lipotropic injections have been conducted are rare. Some doctors may not recommend using it for weight or fat loss, for this reason.
Weight loss clinics will set the price of lipotropic injections, so the cost varies from one weight loss clinic to another.
The components included in the lipotropic injection are one of the factors which may influence the cost on which they settle.
Injections of vitamin B-12 alone may be less expensive but there is no scientific evidence about the cost of these injections.
Some clinics offer injection packages, or they may include the injection cost as part of a weight loss program price.
The injection dosage depends on the ingredients. Furthermore, each clinic can follow a different injection protocol and schedule.
People receive lipotropic injections once a week in some hospitals, whilst other clinics recommend more regular injections.
As with cost, no scientific data are available to back up any dosage claims that weight loss clinics may make.
In one study, researchers intramuscularly administered 1,000 micrograms of vitamin B-12 to investigate the weight loss impacts. Other clinics may choose different strengths of vitamin B-12 in their injection formulations and other ingredients.
Risks and side effects
Individuals wanting to use lipotropic injections should choose a clinic with a licensed doctor. Some clinics may not have physicians on staff, while others may have specialists in weight loss who are medical doctors too.
Certain lipotropic injections may not be suitable for everyone. A person should check, before receiving their first injection, whether any of the ingredients can be harmful in combination with their medication or a medical condition they have.
Besides pain at the site of the injection, one of the risks of using lipotropic injections is that they may not work. People can not rely on these injections to promote fat loss, therefore they should also try to adopt healthier habits, such as regular exercise.
Researchers didn’t investigate the side effects of lipotropic injections. Information on side effects comes from anecdotal evidence from individuals who used the injections to lose weight. Side effects can vary from person to person, too.
Other ways to lose weight
Patients who want to lose weight may talk to a doctor or other healthcare provider to create a safe, effective weight loss plan that is individualized.
Doctors can help people find healthier ways to achieve their goals in terms of weight, body mass index (BMI), and hip-to-waist ratio, which may improve overall health.
People may wish to consider their current eating and exercise habits before planning a weight loss regimen. Some questions that they themselves should ask include:
- What dietary changes can I make to promote healthy living and reach a moderate weight?
- What exercises can I do safely to promote healthy living and reach a moderate weight?
- Which interventions helped or did not in the past?
- What are my dietary and exercise limitations?
Doctors, dietitians and specialists in weight loss can help answer some of those questions.
A person may need to change his lifestyle habits other than eating and exercising to lose weight and keep the loss.
For example, safe and effective weight-loss programs should also include:
- behavioral treatment or lifestyle counseling
- sleep management
- stress management
- continuous feedback, monitoring, and support
- slow, steady, and achievable fitness goals
People should try to avoid programs which are scams for weight loss. These should be submitted to the Federal Commerce Commission.
Some simple changes that a person may make to his diet to promote healthier habits include:
- drinking more water
- eating more fiber
- avoiding processed foods
- increasing the amount of fruits and vegetables in the diet
- reducing the intake of sugar and sugar-sweetened beverages
The 2015–2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans provide nutrition and exercise recommendations. People who want to lose weight can follow these recommended guidelines, along with suggestions from their doctor.
Some people make use of lipotropic injections to help lose fat and lose weight.
These injections have the purpose of accelerating fat metabolism. However, people should also try to eat healthier and adopt regular exercise habits, in order to maintain a moderate weight. Lipotropic injections are not a supplement to these healthy habits.
Researchers have not confirmed the effectiveness of the lipotropic injections.
Individual ingredients include certain vitamins, minerals, and amino acids that may contribute to the metabolism of fat. Most data about the success of lipotropic injections, however, derive from anecdotal evidence. Researchers should therefore continue to study its effectiveness.
A person should try to focus on lifestyle and diet, in order to lose weight and fat.