A number of dietary supplements are marketed to consumers, but few have been tested in scientific studies, and an even smaller number have shown significant efficacy. Researchers at the University of Connecticut tested a product containing a proprietary blend of modified cellulose and cetylated fatty acids. In a double blind randomized study, overweight women consumed either placebo or supplement for 8 weeks while following a calorically restricted diet and exercise program. Subjects consumed 1200 mg at the two largest meals each day. Both groups lost weight, but the active supplement resulted in a dramatic loss of 20 pounds compared to the more moderate loss of 9 pounds in the placebo group. Percent body fat also decreased by a staggering 7.3 percentage points (43.4% to 36.1%) compared to the placebo group who decreased 3.7%. The supplement also decreased waist circumference more than placebo, as well as leptin a hormone implicated in obesity. Increasing fiber intake has shown beneficial effects on metabolic health and weight loss, but the magnitude of improvement seen in this study goes beyond the effects of generic fiber supplementation. The findings indicate that a cetylated fatty acid and cellulose blend has unique effects on weight and fat loss.

Fragala MS, Kraemer WJ, Volek JS, Maresh CM, Puglisi MJ, Vingren JL, Ho JY, Hatfield DL, Spiering BA, Forsythe CE, Thomas GA, Quann EE, Anderson JM, Hesslink RL Jr. Influences of a dietary supplement in combination with an exercise and diet regimen on adipocytokines and adiposity in women who are overweight. Eur J Appl Physiol. 2008 Dec 2. [Epub ahead of print]