Golo Review: Best Weight Loss Program?

Golo Review: Best Weight Loss Program?

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Golo is a weight loss program which includes a diet plan and a dietary supplement called Release. The brand claims that "insulin resistance is the root problem [of obesity] but the diet and pharmaceutical industries don't want to talk about it."

But is insulin resistance really the root cause of weight gain, or is this just a marketing claim? Is Golo's diet proven in clinical studies to cause weight loss? Does Golo's Release supplement contain research-backed ingredients for weight loss? And how do real users rate and describe the effects of Golo?

In this article we’ll answer all of these questions and more, as we review the clinical trials on the Golo Diet, and analyze the ingredients in Golo Release, to give our take on whether or not the program is likely to be effective for weight loss.

We'll also share our concerns about the way Golo's clinical trials are designed, highlight some questionable health claims on the Golo website and feature unsponsored customer reviews.

Does Golo Diet Cause Weight Loss?

Golo Diet study

Golo has a Studies page on their website where the brand documents four clinical studies they have funded to test the weight loss effects of their diet program.

All four studies listed on Golo's Studies page found their program to be effective for weight loss, however, none of these studies appear to be published in any peer-reviewed medical journals, and none are placebo-controlled.

The brand reports that after one year, the average patient loses 48.6 pounds.

We recommend that consumers disregard claims of efficacy made by brands based on company-funded studies that are not published in peer-reviewed journals, due to the risk of bias.

If these trials were at least benchmarked to another commercial weight loss diet program, we would find the results more intriguing, but any diet program that includes caloric restriction and exercise can cause weight loss.

We consider Golo's diet likely to be effective for weight loss based on the clinical studies funded by the brand, but we do not recommend the program overall because we can't identify any evidence that's it's more effective than any other weight loss program that involves caloric restriction and exercise.

Golo Release Ingredient Analysis

Golo Release Supplement Facts panel

The ingredients in Golo Release are shown above.

Golo claims that this supplement causes weight loss and reduces hunger and cravings.

Magnesium, zinc and chromium are minerals, and we can't find research to support these minerals causing weight loss at their stated doses.

A meta-study found that chromium supplementation induced small but statistically significant reductions in body weight, as we documented in our Olly Combat Cravings reviews article.

However, the chromium dose used in all trials examined in the study was higher than the dose in Release.

The remaining ingredients are included in a proprietary (prop) blend totaling only 297 milligrams (mg), which is an average of 42 mg per ingredient.

Rhodiola extract is the first ingredient in the prop blend, and we have not come across any clinical studies suggesting this ingredient is effective for weight loss. One animal study reported that rhodiola extract caused weight gain.

Inositol has been shown to be effective for weight loss, but may be significantly underdosed in Release.

A clinical trial on inositol supplementation in overweight women published in the Climacteric journal found that the compound did cause weight loss and a reversal of metabolic syndrome in some participants, but the dosage used was 4,000 mg per day, or 95x the amount in Golo Release.

Berberine extract is an effective ingredient for weight loss, but may also be underdosed in this supplement.

A meta-study on berberine supplementation found that this ingredient caused weight loss, but the minimum dose in any of the trials studied was 1,000 mg per day, which is 24x the amount in Release.

Gardenia extract may be effective for weight loss though research is limited.

The only human study we could find on gardenia for weight loss used between 3,000 mg and 10,000 mg, which is many times higher than the 42 mg average ingredient dose in Release.

Banaba extract was found in a 2006 clinical trial to cause weight loss. This trial is published in Japanese so we can't assess dosage. We'll consider this ingredient potentially effective.

Salaretin is a trademarked and standardized botanical extract which was found in an animal trial to have no effect on body weight. 

This ingredient manufacturer's website only lists three clinical trials at the time of updating this article, and none of them relate to weight loss. All three relate to diabetes.

Apple extract is the final ingredient in Golo Release, and we cannot locate any medical trials suggesting this ingredient is effective for weight loss.

The inactive ingredients in Golo Release are all safe and non-toxic. There are no questionable additives like added sugar or flavoring agents which is a good thing.

Overall, we do not consider this supplement likely to cause weight loss as we consider the majority of its active ingredients to be underdosed.

Golo does not appear to have funded any studies proving that their Release supplement is effective for weight loss isolated from a restricted calorie diet.

One of the most popular reviews of the Golo diet and Release supplement is by a nutritionist who has a channel called "All Things Nutrition":

What's Allowed in Golo's Diet?

Golo diet questionable claims example

Golo’s Diet, also called the Golo For Life Plan, recommends “superfoods” to “help de​​tox.” This claim is uncited and we consider it unscientific.

We have not come across any clinical studies suggesting that eating "superfoods" causes detoxification beyond the body's natural detoxification processes.

We also haven't come across any medical evidence that "toxins" cause obesity. The average person who is overweight is overweight because they consume more calories than they expend on a regular basis; not due to environmental toxins.

Golo Diet claims

The Golo diet seems relatively straightfoward. The brand suggests that eating whole foods benefits health, which we agree with. Any diet model that eliminates processed foods should improve consumer health on average.

One aspect of Golo's diet that we consider suboptimal is that it doesn’t appear to differentiate between animal protein types.

It’s well-established in medical research that animal products sourced from pastured animals are healthier than animal products from conventionally-raised animals.

We have no issue with the basics of the Golo Diet, but we don't consider this worth spending money or time on.

The brand seems to be suggesting that eating whole foods will improve health and potentially enhance weight loss compared to eating an unhealthy diet containing processed foods like pizza or cookies, which we agree with, and which seems logical.

Another video from All Things Nutrition overviewed some of the specific foods that are allowed and disallowed on the Golo Diet:

Questionable Health Claims on Golo Website

Golo questionable health claim 1

As referenced in the intro to this article, Golo claims that insulin resistance is the root cause of weight loss. However, this claim is not cited or proven.

While insulin resistance is certainly associated with obesity, as are many unfavorable metabolic changes, we have not come across any convincing medical evidence that insulin resistance is the cause of obesity. 

We recommend that Golo cites medical evidence proving that insulin resistance is the root cause of obesity in most obese individuals or removes this claim from their website.

Golo questionable health claims 2

Golo also has an interactive feature on their site that diagnoses risk for insulin resistance. 

We do not recommend that consumers take online quizzes from supplement companies to diagnose health conditions, as this is an unscientific and potentially dangerous approach.

Insulin resistance can be diagnosed with blood tests ordered by a doctor.

Real People Try Golo

A TikTok creator named Lauren Metrik claims to have lost over 70 pounds taking Golo Release, and includes before-and-after images:

@laurenmetrik1010 Releasing 70 pounds and still going since Summer 2021!! GOLO saved my life!! @GOLOForLifeOfficial #goloforlife #golorelease #weightloss #weightlosstransformation #fyp #newme #legendsaremade ♬ Legends Are Made - Sam Tinnesz

A TikTok user named Julie Shroyer tried the Golo diet and Release supplement for 30 days and documented whether or not the program caused weight loss:

@fabover50 GOLO weight loss program…30 day review! #golo #weightloss #weightlossprogram #review #dietprograms #9pounds #loseweight #insulin #metabolism #burnfat #weight #4u ♬ Coffee Talk (Extended) - BLVKSHP

Does Golo Cause Side Effects?

Since Golo is a weight loss program, many consumers are curious about whether the Golo Diet or Golo Release supplement are likely to cause side effects.

In our opinion, the Golo Diet is unlikely to cause any side effects in otherwise healthy individuals.

It appears to be a whole food diet. Occasionally, individuals who switch from an unhealthy diet high in processed foods may experience indigestion when consuming a whole food diet that's higher in fiber, but we don't find the Golo Diet likely to cause harmful side effects.

We also don't believe that Golo Release is likely to cause any harmful side effects. While we don't recommend the supplement due to efficacy concerns, we did not identify any potentially harmful or toxic ingredients in our formulation review.

One of the clinical studies on Golo Diet and Release program noted that three out of 16 participants dropped out of the trial due to minor side effects (two to diarrhea and one to abdominal pain).

The other clinical studies noted zero side effects.

Why Was Golo Sued?

In 2021, Golo was sued in a class-action lawsuit over allegations of false advertising.

The plaintiff argued that Golo's program was ineffective for weight loss, and that the brand made false health claims on their website.

At the time of updating this article, this lawsuit appears to be ongoing.

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).

MBG Organic Fiber Potency+ is our top fiber pick because it's certified organic, provides 7 g of fiber per serving and costs under $1.85 per serving at the time of updating this article.

MCT oil was shown in a meta-study to cause 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. and it currently costs only $15.50 for over a month's worth of product.

Ginger intake "significantly decreased body weight" according to a 2019 meta-study on ginger and weight loss that analyzed data from 14 clinical trials.

Pique La Ginger is our top ginger product, because it's an organic tea in convenient crystallized form, and all that's needed is to pour the powder into a glass and add hot water.

All three of the products mentioned in this section are entirely free of additive ingredients that we consider to be unhealthy or unsafe.

Golo Pros and Cons

Here are the pros and cons of Golo in our opinion:


  • Golo Diet is healthier than Standard American Diet
  • Golo Diet should support weight loss
  • Brand funds clinical trials
  • Release supplement contains no unhealthy additives
  • Seems unlikely to cause side effects


  • Clinical trials don't appear to be published in peer-reviewed journals
  • Questionable health claims on brand's website
  • Many active ingredients in Release may be underdosed
Stay up-to-date on our research reviews


We do not currently recommend paying for the Golo Diet or the weight loss supplement Golo Release.

While the Golo diet may be effective for weight loss, we're not under the impression that it has any particularly novel elements, or that it's superior to simply restricting calories and exercising.

Until the brand funds a comparative study on Golo Diet versus other commercial diet plans, proving Golo to be superior, we will recommend eating a whole food diet, cutting out processed foods and exercising to support weight loss.

We are unable to identify any ingredients in Golo Release based on existing clinical research that we consider effectively dosed, and we do not believe the supplement will cause weight loss.

There are several questionable health claims on the Golo website, and we hope that the brand will either provide proof of those claims, or remove them from their site.

We do not consider the Golo Diet or Golo Release likely to cause any side effects.