Is there such a thing as a natural appetite suppressant?

Is there such a thing as an appetite suppressant that is safe and really works?
I see all the gimmicky weight loss “kits” at the store, but I was wondering:

Is there really a genuine appetite suppressant that truly works and helps take the edge off while dieting? I don’t mean a magic pill that will turn you into a runway model, but something that’safe and can help ease the hunger pains. (something to take the edge off)

My wife and I were discussing this tonight and she said the only thing she knew of was “amphetamines”, but they are extremely dangerous as well as illegal in Canada.

I thought you dopers might know of something like tree bark boiled in spring water or some other concoction I haven’t thought about :slight_smile:


Eat something with a lot of bulk but low calories, like celery or plain, air-popped popcorn. It’s not a good idea to totally ignore hunger or try to take drugs, you won’t do your body any favors.

Also, exercise can have an appetite suppresant effect for some people. Exercise is natural, right?

And drinking more water, within reason.

Years ago I read a study where they got teens on bad diets to change their diet simply by forcing them to eat 1 pound of potatoes a day and whatever else they wanted. Most lost weight because the introduction of the potatoes caused them to eat less other stuff. Nowadays with all the GI thinking I imagine they would recommend another vegetable say squash.

The problem you have is that ‘natural’ is a meaningless word. Amphetamines are neither more nor less natural than anything else.

However if you want a product that’s a highly refined and processed product of a plant then there is always Hoodia, which shows a bit of promise ATM.

I believe 5-htp can be used as a mild appetite suppressant. Its a precursor to serotonin, so i assume the body produces this anyway, and thus could be said to be ‘natural’. Personally i’ve never noticed it making me less hungry, but then i haven’t ever looked out for that effect.

A cup of tea with sugar.

Doesn’t the hunger drive disregard bulk and only seek calories? (or something like that)

There’s appetite suppressants and there’s stimulants. There’s some amount of overlap, but the two are not idential. An ideal appetite suppressant would do just that and only that: suppress the appetite. A stimulant increases the body’s realease of adreneline and similar hormones, perhaps increasing base metabolic rate.

In reality, the two are often linked. Many stimulants are also appetite suppressants and vice-versa. Which is why so many diet herbs can be dangerous. “Revving the body up” to a heightened stress state due to the frequent presence of stress hormones may lead, over time, to stress related illness.

For truly stimulant free appetite suppression, think low calorie clear liquids (water, teas and broth) and fiber. But also try to avoid sugary things, as those may, some believe, cause blood sugar spikes which can make you hungry.

For a gentle herbal appetite suppressant which is also a gentle stimulant and has a good, safe history of being used for weight loss, blood sugar regulation and a host of other good things, try green tea. Not green tea supplements, which have been mucked with and concentrated to potentially too-high doses, but actual green tea. 10 cups or more per day, if you like. If you’re drinking it in tea form, you literally cannot drink too much. If you take it in capsules, you can consume too much. Plus, of course, tea gives you that clear liquid full feeling which is so helpful.

[Insert standard herbal disclaimer here. Check with your physician before starting any weight loss regime. For informational purposes only.}

What kind of diet are you doing? You may want to look into one of the diets that decrease the amount of processed carbs if you’re having trouble with hunger. I always thought it was bunk, but after trying out a diet that restricts things like white bread, sugar, and starchy vegys (potatoes, etc.) I’m a big believer.

I’ve always had trouble with diets - I get really, really hungry, and am typically miserable. My memories of low-fat diets are the worst; I walked around dizzy and in a daze because of hunger all the time.

Since going on a low-processed-carb diet, though, I’ve started eating less, losing weight, and have only once experienced that “OMG I’m going to die unless I eat!” feeling, and that was because I screwed up and forgot to eat a decent breakfast before heading out for 3 hours of errands. I just can’t believe how full I feel all the time, even though I’ve cut my caloric intake by quite a bit. I eat lean meats, non-starchy veggies, olive oil, cheese, and eggs. I stay away from sugar and anything made with white flour (white bread, most boxed cereal, baked goods, etc.) I’m going to start experimenting with whole grains soon.

Sounds like a Gateway Diet. :smiley: Careful you don’t slip into the hard stuff after a long night of whole grains. Soon you’ll be wandering the aisles of Whole Foods, actually purchasing things like “Spelt Sprouts” and “Organic Soba Noodles”!

*Warm, or hot * water.

I’m far too skinny as it is so I don’t diet, but during a stomach-flu, cold water was too harsh on my stomach. Hot water made me feel very ‘full’.

We had a thread hereabouts not too long ago concerning the Atkins diet and similar. I posted the findings of a recent investigation and BBC documentary. In a nutshell, it said the reason these diets worked is that of all the food groups, protein was most effective at triggering the feeling of satiety, or of having satisfied the appetite. Hence, if you focus on protein, you are less likely to overeat. But you need to mix this solitary piece of advice in with lots of other good wisdom before you can really benefit from it.

Just because something is “natural” doesn’t mean it’s safe or effective.

Nope, hunger is based on blood sugar levels. The lower they dip, the hungrier you get. Controlling blood sugar is the key to controlling hunger.

Given that blood sugar is an important topic for type 2 diabetics, there’s a wealth of information out there about how to control it dietarily.

Thanks for the helpful & informative replies.
I’ve been on the Bernstein diet, and although it works and I’m having good results, OMG, some days I think I’m going insane from hunger.

I realize there is no “magic pill” or miracle cure, but I was just looking for some ideas to help when things get really rough.

I have green tea and will try that tonight.

This is the diet I’m on:


If it’s not decaffeinated, be careful about drinking it late at night.

I’m not seeing any specifics about the diet there. Would you mind giving a brief summary?

For whatever reason grapefuit, eaten fresh, is (for me) a powerful natural appetite supressant. It fills you up but there’s also something in it that supresses the “hungries” for quite sometime way out of proportion to the food value of the grapefruit itself.

Don’t worry, I spent 11 years in Boulder. If I was going to be assimilated, I think it would have happened already.

That said, I never though the words “I’m going to avoid white flour and white sugar” would ever come out of my mouth. But after less than 2 weeks without them, everything has changed. There’s no way I’m going back. I plan on balancing things out, though, by drinking cheap beer and taking up smoking. :smiley:
I’m kidding! Well, at least about the smoking part.

Amen. My favorite is tobacco. All it takes is for you to light up whenever you feel hungry or when you consciously know you have had enough to eat. Speed (amphetamines) works well, too.

If you were to meet me you would see I quit both years ago. I’m like a poster child for an unhealthy lifestyle. “This man used to weigh 175 pounds but since quitting drugs, nicotine, and most alcohol…”