Disclaimer: None of the information in this article constitutes medical advice. All statements are merely the opinion of the writer(s). We recommend that patients follow their doctor’s guidance in regard to weight loss.
Berberine is another naturally-derived compound that’s recently gone TikTok-famous for its supposed effects on weight loss. The compound can be derived from various plants, and many online influencers suggest it’s a natural weight loss miracle.
But is berberine actually proven in research studies to cause weight loss, or is it another passing gimmick? Does it cause side effects? How do real users who took berberine for weight loss describe its effects? And what retailer sells the best quality berberine?
In this article we’ll answer all of these questions and more, as we analyze medical studies on berberine and weight loss to give our take on whether the supplement is likely to be effective, or if it’s a waste of money.
We’ll feature unsponsored user reviews including before-and-after images, discuss potential side effects of berberine and share our top berberine supplement recommendation.
Does Berberine Actually Cause Weight Loss?
Berberine has been studied in various clinical trials for its effects on weight.
A 2020 meta-study analyzed results from 12 clinical trials on berberine and weight loss. The researchers reported that trial participants taking berberine lost an average of 4.6 pounds.
The duration of the trials varied from 1 to 24 months, but most of the trials were 3 months long. This suggests a potential annualized weight loss of 18.4 pounds from berberine supplementation.
A medical review published in the Biomedicine & Pharmacotherapy journal analyzed test tube studies, animal studies and human studies to determine the effects of berberine on weight.
The study authors concluded that berberine caused modest weight gain on average, and also had favorable effects on cholesterol and blood sugar.
A 2012 clinical trial reported that berberine caused an average weight loss of five pounds over 12 weeks in obese subjects. This suggests a potential annualized weight loss of 20 pounds.
The total dose used in the above-linked trial was 1,500 milligrams (mg) per day split across three daily dosings of 500 mg.
Overall, we consider the research on berberine for weight loss to be convincing. We do not recommend taking berberine as a standalone treatment for obesity or any other medical condition, but it may be worth consulting with a doctor about.
Before discussing potential side effects of this compound, we’ll feature some unsponsored berberine user reviews in the next section.
Real Users Try Berberine
A YouTube creator named Jeanine Escobar shared her experience using berberine for weight loss:
A TikTok creator named “sukhi” shared before-and-after images from her experience using berberine for weight loss:
Does Berberine Cause Side Effects?
Berberine can cause side effects such as gastrointestinal distress, constipation or diarrhea according to a medical review published in the Phytotherapy Research journal.
However, side effects don’t appear to be severe when the supplement is dosed appropriately.
A medical review published in the LiverTox journal stated the following about berberine supplementation:
“Side effects are few and largely mild and transient.”
Berberine can interact with prescription medications and cause dangerous side effects according to MedLinePlus, so it’s important that patients discuss berberine supplementation with a doctor who’s aware of any prescription medications they’re using.
Overall, we consider berberine unlikely to cause side effects in otherwise healthy individuals.
Our Clean Berberine Brand Pick
Solvay Berberine is our top berberine pick.
This supplement is ConsumerLab approved, which means it was found in independent testing to be accurately labeled and contain as much berberine as the brand states.
Solvay Berberine is also highly affordable, costing only $0.27 per serving.
This supplement has been reviewed over 1,400 times on Amazon with an average review rating of 4.5/5 stars at the time of publishing this article.
Interested consumers can check out Solvay Berberine at this link to the product page on the brand's official Amazon store.
Is Berberine Really "Nature's Ozempic"?
A segment on NBC News discussed berberine for weight loss and compared the supplement to weight loss drug Ozempic:
Our Clean Weight Loss Picks
There are food-based nutrients which have been shown in medical studies to be effective for weight loss.
Dietary fiber was shown in a medical review published in The Journal of Nutrition to cause 16 pounds of weight loss in 6 months when combined with moderate caloric restriction (750 calories per day below baseline).
Supergut Fiber Mix is our recommended fiber supplement, because it contains three different types of fiber powder and no questionable additive ingredients. Interested consumers can check out Supergut Fiber Mix at this link to the product page on the brand's official website, where it retails for under $2 per serving at a subscription rate.
MCT oil is quickly absorbed by the body and increases metabolic rate, which causes fat loss. A 2015 meta-study on MCT oil documented more than one pound of weight loss over 10 weeks. This equates to potential annualized weight loss of 6 pounds per year with less than one tablespoon's worth of MCT oil per day.
Bulletproof MCT Oil is our top MCT oil product, because the only ingredient is MCT oil derived from coconuts. There are no questionable additives. Interested consumers can check out Bulletproof MCT Oil at this link to the product page on the brand's official website, where it currently costs only $15.50 for over a month's worth of product.
Coffee is one of the few whole food ingredients associated with weight loss in clinical trials. A meta-analysis published in the Nutrients journal found that coffee intake was associated with reduced body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference.
VitaCup Organic Instant Coffee Sticks is our top coffee product for weight loss, due to its convenience. No preparation or machinery is needed. The sticks can be mixed into hot or cold water (or other beverages) and consumed. The only ingredient is organic instant coffee; no questionable additives.
Interested consumers can check out VitaCup Organic Instant Coffee Sticks at this link to the product page on the brand's official website, where they retail for $1 per serving at a subscription rate.