I've been doing some research on thermogenics/ fat burning/ fat blocker supplements, so I headed to the gym today and asked a Personal Trainer over there about a certain thermogenic product.
Anyway, he recommended a 'personally-guaranteed' product... a mixture of Ma Huang* and something called ******? He hesitated in spelling it for me.. and kept pushing me to buy it.. which kinda turned me off.. 2-4 pills a day he said, up to 2 weeks, followed by a one month off period.
I am searching online for the latter ingredient.. but can't seem to get the spelling right. Ma Huang is also called Ephedrine which accelerates heart rate (the PT said).
He mentioned that 80% of his clients are taking these tablets and all of them absolutely love it.. so I did ask him: why do i need to buy a hundred tablets? can't i just take 50 tabs first? his reply to me was: oh but u can keep u see... so i said: if 80% of your clients are taking it, im sure u can help me find someone who wants to buy the other half since it's so popular anyways.. he had nothing to say.
Previously on another occasion some months ago when I felt as if my workout wasn't quite going anywhere, I asked him how to get rid of the last couple of layers of blubber.. he straightaway launched into this ONE-week programme thing that he designed.. 6 days of workout, high-protein high fibre diet, some pill-popping, then on the 7th day, only SIPS of water allowed to get rid of water in your body.. he guaranteed me 6 packs.. i was like WHAT?!
I thought I'd share my experience with you.
This is like giving a kid a can of beer when all he needed was a glass of milk. It's just MEAN. This is just SO WRONG is SO MANY ways I just don't know where to start.
It is extremely disappointing to hear such recommendations come from the mouth of a Personal Trainer (PT). It is people like these who tarnish an awesome life-changing and inspiring job of being a Personal Trainer. What I find disappointing is that he suggested an easy way out (which also happens to be a very UNSAFE one) to someone who was keen on doing things right. What he suggested very much sounds like a recipe for a heart attack... jokes aside.
Also, the diet he suggested sounds very much like a pre-contest diet where bodybuilders strip their last bits of bodyfat to look good just in time for a contest and appearing on stage. You should ask the PT.. what happens after the 1 week of madness?
If I were you.. I would NOT go down that path of drug abuse to achieve weight loss. This entire topic is very, very controversial, and surprisingly - very widespread wherever you go. It's just that it is rarely discussed, for obvious reasons - it's illegal, and has the potential to do you harm if you're not careful.
As for Ma Huang - it's pretty common and can be found in most thermogenic supplements - but in controlled doses so that you won't run the risk of screwing yourself.
Here's a description of Ma Huang I got off the net:
*Ma Huang is an evergreen plant derivative. It acts as a stimulant by supposedly boosting energy and helping with weight control, and is chemically similar to ephedrine. Ephedrine accomplishes weight control partly by reducing appetite and by boosting your heart rate, etc.
Any products containing ephedra were made illegal for over-the-counter sales by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on April 12, 2004. Prior to this date, ephedra was available legally in nutritional supplements, energizers, and dietary teas, as well as in herbal "ecstasy," which was the impetus for its controversy. The US FDA banned ephedrine after it "...received an increasing number of reports of adverse reactions associated with ephedra use. These reported reactions vary from the milder adverse effects known to be associated with sympathomimetic stimulants (e.g., nervousness, dizziness, tremor, alterations in blood pressure, headache, gastrointestinal distress) to chest pain, myocardial infarction, hepatitis, stroke, seizures, psychosis, and death." Some 32 deaths were also attributed to this drug.
However, the whole ephedrine abuse drama too, is controversial, and there's always been two sides of the story, just like everything else. I'd rather not go there.
And a note to everyone - I do not condone the usage of Ephedrine, or any other drug for the enhancement of sport performance, no matter what your excuse is. Nothing beats proper nutrition, diet, and exercise.
Thanks for sharing your experience with us Fitchick. I appreciate it.