A question we often hear is “Do you have any herbs that will help me lose weight?”
The answer is tricky. Yes and no. It is possible to use herbs for weight loss, but these herbs can also be dangerous. The herbs are stimulants. They are usually marketed as appetite suppressants and are one of the most common ways that herbs are used.
Stimulants are similar to caffeine. They increase metabolism and suppress appetite, or sometimes help with lowering blood sugar. The problem is that stimulants have addictive properties and can cause damage.
A BMI or Body Mass Index over 30 is considered obese. It is a crude measure. Some suggest that because weight is correlated to so many other health factors, weight loss by any means is usually a good thing. Others suggest that when weight loss is not achieved by the slow metabolism of fat and adipose (through diet and exercise), it carries other health risks.
What if you really want to try a herbal approach to weight loss? There are several other herbal actions that can be useful, aside from stimulants. These include alteratives, hepatics, laxatives, adaptogens, cardiotonics, vascular tonics, circulatory tonics, and endocrine modulators.
Overall, you could consider a tincture that includes: Burdock, Rhodiola, Yellow dock, Dandelion root, Bupleurum, Greater celandine, and Korean red ginseng. 1 tbps twice a day between meals if the tinctures are in a 1:5 ratio. This type of tincture should be used for a few weeks, then re-assessed to see if the desired results were obtained.
As always, there are alternatives that can be used. The exact herbs you select may want to be decided based on your individual case.
Other tidbits for weight loss include: use diet and exercise alongside herbs. There are no shortcuts for long lasting changes. It requires hard work, discipline, and support. Botanicals are best used for weight loss as part of an overall supportive treatment plan.