ProbioSlim Review: Will Probiotics Help You Lose Weight?

ProbioSlim Review: Will Probiotics Help You Lose Weight?


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ProbioSlim is a weight loss supplement made by a brand called Force Factor, which can be purchased online but is also available from a number of large retailers such as Sam’s Club, Target and Walmart. The brand suggests that ProbioSlim can not only help with weight loss, but can also improve digestion.

In this article we’ll review the ingredients in ProbioSlim based on medical research to provide our determination on whether the supplement is likely to be effective for weight loss. We'll also explain some issues we have with health claims made by Force Factor.

Ingredient Review

ProbioSlim ingredients list

The first ingredient in ProbioSlim is a probiotic called LactoSpore, which is patented version of probiotic strain Bacillus coagulans MTCC 5856.

At the time of updating this article, there is only one clinical trial on LactoSpore's website evaluating this ingredient's efficacy for weight loss.

The trial participants did lose weight over the course of the three-week trial, but they were assigned a diet with significantly lower calories than maintenance (around 1,300 daily calories for women and around 1,700 daily calories for men). Eating fewer calories than maintenance directly causes weight loss, so we cannot suggest that the weight loss results were caused by additional supplementation of a probiotic.

This is a very poorly-designed trial in our opinion. The way to prove whether LactoSpore causes weight loss would be to have two trial groups consuming the exact same diet, with one of them taking LactoSpore and the other taking placebo pills. This would isolate the effects of LactoSpore. 

Additionally, the trial participants only used LactoSpore in one of three weeks of the trial. This study does not prove that LactoSpore causes weight loss in our opinion, and we strongly disagree with the study methodology.

Both of the next two ingredients in ProbioSlim are forms of green tea extract. While green tea extract may be effective for weight loss short-term, we know from medical research that that are health risks associated with high doses of polyphenols from green tea.

We recommend that consumers avoid green tea extract, especially when its dosage is not published as in the case of ProbioSlim.

The next three ingredients in ProbioSlim are fruit extracts: kiwi extract, fig extract and papaya extract.

Papaya extract is the only of these three ingredients that we could find medical research on, suggesting it may be effective for weight loss. But the doses used in the medical review of papaya for weight loss were many times higher than the dose of all ingredients combined in ProbioSlim. We will consider this ingredient ineffective.

The final ingredients in ProbioSlim are two forms of chlorophyllin, and we can’t find any medical studies suggesting this compound is effective for weight loss.

This supplement also contains an additive ingredient called titanium dioxide which we recommend avoiding. It's been banned in the European Union (E.U.) for use as a food additive due to documented toxicity concerns.

Overall we find this to be a very poorly formulated supplement, and would not recommend its use. We cannot identify one single active ingredient at the expected dosage in ProbioSlim which we would consider effective for weight loss, and therefore we do not believe this supplement is likely to be effective for weight loss.

ProbioSlim Gummies Review

ProbioSlim Gummies ingredients

Focus Factor sells a gummy formulation of ProbioSlim which we consider to have an even worse formulation than the original. 

This product contains the same fruit and probiotic blend that we consider ineffective as referenced in the previous review, but the dosages of some ingredients are comically low in this formulation.

The dose of each "Super Fruit" ingredient is 100 micrograms (mcg). According to the USDA, one single grape has a dose of 4.9 grams (g).

4.9 g = 4.9 million mcg.

This means that one single grape has a dose 49,000 times higher than the "Super Fruit" ingredients in ProbioSlim gummies.

This supplement also contains a vitamin and mineral blend, including ingredients like Vitamin B6 and Vitamin B9. As we've stated in many other Illuminate Health reviews, we don't believe it's logical to take random blends of vitamins because we haven't come across any medical evidence that added vitamins improves overall health or causes weight loss.

Patients with documented vitamin deficiencies benefit from vitamin supplementation, but taking random vitamin blends from a gummy supplement without knowing your vitamin status seems illogical.

We would strongly recommend avoiding this supplement.

Prop Blend Issues

The entire ingredient label of ProbioSlim is composed of a proprietary ("prop") blend. This means that the total dosage of the blend is listed, but not the dosage of each individual ingredient.

We disagree with the use of prop blends generally because it prevents consumers from accessing critical information. If the individual active ingredient doses are not listed, how can consumers (or researchers like us) determine if each ingredient is likely to be effective and safe?

We find the use of a prop blend to be especially questionable given that ProbioSlim contains caffeine. Green tea extract contains caffeine, and consumers deserve to know the dose of green tea extract used and the resultant caffeine dose. Caffeine is a minor stimulant which can cause anxiety and increase blood pressure in some patients, and its dosage information is critical for consumer safety.

We urge Focus Factor to publish individual ingredient dosages, at least for the green tea extract and caffeine, and we recommend that consumers avoid supplements that list their ingredients as prop blends.

Questionable Health Claims

ProbioSlim questionable health claims

Force Factor makes a variety of questionable health claims on the ProbioSlim product page, and many are totally uncited. 

As an example, under a "Science" header on the product page, Focus Factor describes green tea extract as a "powerful weight management ingredient" which "help[s] you cleanly burn fat." No citation to medical research is made for either claim.

Force Factor also claims on the “Science” page of their website that they perform all sorts of product testing, including finished product testing (which is the industry gold standard), to prove the potency and purity of their supplements.

However, the company doesn’t publish any of this testing. 

Contamination and lack of product testing is a huge issue in the U.S. supplement market, and if Focus Factor actually has test results proving the potency, label accuracy and purity of their products we suggest that they share those results on their website.

We consider it a red flag when supplement brands make specific health claims without any proof, and we recommend that consumers avoid brands doing so.

Our Weight Loss Supplement Recommendations

Dietary fiber is a food product that can be taken supplementally as a powder, and it has impressive research backing for weight loss.

An extensive medical review published in The Journal of Nutrition found that fiber intake directly predicts weight loss. It's zero-calorie plant matter that makes you feel full faster, and consume fewer calories overall.

The fiber supplement we recommend is SuperGut Fiber Mix. It contains a clean and effective formulation: a blend of three different types of unflavored dietary fiber and zero additive ingredients. It can be mixed into liquids or foods. Interested consumers can buy SuperGut fiber at this link.

We recommend using two fiber mixes per day, which provides 16 g of fiber. This is within the increased fiber dosage range associated with the most weight loss in the above-linked study (8-29 additional grams per day).

Medium-chain triglyceride (MCT) oil is another dietary supplement which has been shown in clinical trials to cause weight loss.

MCT oil is quickly absorbed by the body and increases metabolic rate, which causes fat loss. A meta-study on MCT oil documented weight loss of 0.51 kilograms (kg), which equates to 1.12 pounds (lbs) over a period of 10 weeks on average. This equates to a potential annualized weight loss of 5.84 pounds with MCT oil supplementation.

We recommend Bulletproof MCT Oil as our top MCT oil product, because it has a clean and effective formulation. The only ingredient is MCT oil derived from coconuts, and the product has no questionable additives. Interested consumers can buy Bulletproof MCT Oil at this link.

The effective dose range of MCT oil for weight loss (based on the medical review) is 1.7 g to 10 g per day. Bulletproof's MCT oil provides 14 g in one tablespoon, so around two-thirds of one tablespoon should be a maximally-effective dosage.

Stay up-to-date on our research reviews

Conclusion

We don't recommend any ProbioSlim products, and we consider Focus Factor to be a low-quality manufacturer. Based on the formulations we've reviewed in this article, we would recommend avoiding all Focus Factor supplements.

We have been unable to identify one single ingredient in ProbioSlim or ProbioSlim Gummies that we would consider effectively dosed for weight loss. Both formulations contain additive ingredients we consider questionable from a health perspective.

Increasing intake of dietary fiber and using supplemental MCT oil are research-backed weight loss alternatives that overweight consumers may benefit from trying.




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