In the world of herbal concoctions and natural supplements that claim to suppress your appetite or “burn more calories”, you would be hard pressed to find one that doesn’t rely on hyper-stimulating your nervous system in order to control appetite. They contain caffeine and other stimulants in order to help reduce appetite. For this reason, you often find that herbal and natural concoctions specifically designed for appetite control leave leave you with a jittery, disconnected or anxious feeling - especially if you are sensitive to caffeine and other stimulants.
These types of appetite suppressant supplements can also lead to headaches, dehydration and even moodiness. After they wear off, some users may also find that their appetite kicks back in twofold or that they feel extremely tired and listless since the energy drop happens fast and without warning. If you’re looking for something that takes the edge off your appetite as a way to jump start a healthy weight loss program, here are some of the options you may want to look into.
Cinnamon – With or Without Chromium
Cinnamon can be a fantastic way to help control appetite and cravings throughout the day. The mechanism by which cinnamon can do this is its ability to help regulate blood sugar. It is one of the herbs that has been identified of helping some people to maintain stabilized blood sugar levels throughout the day.
In addition to this, some people even add ginger and turmeric in addition to cinnamon to get an even more blood sugar stabilizing effect. It’s interesting to note that all of these herbal supplements come from the root of a plant. Coincidence? Maybe so, but these herbs also have plenty of other health benefits in addition to helping maintain blood sugar at a healthy level, so they are worth a look.
Cinnamon with Added Chromium Picolinate
If you want even more blood sugar control, there are cinnamon supplements that are available with and addition of chromium. You may remember chromium for the circa 1980s/1990s diet craze of chromium picolinate. It was in virtually every appetite suppressant and diet supplement for a while, and like most fads, became less talked about and popular.
Most of the cinnamon supplements with chromium are much larger than just cinnamon. Presumably because the dosing of chromium needs to be a little higher to be effective. I have found these cinnamon/chromium supplements to be even more effective at controlling the appetite and blood sugar levels throughout the day.
Chromium can build up in the tissues and cause long term harm if used consistently for a longer period of time, so I’d encourage you to read more on this supplement before taking it. However, chromium is not something I’d advocate taking long term whereas cinnamon is a little more inert and safer to use long term. After all, it is just a spice!
Ashwagandha, an Indian-derived herb, has crept on the scene over the past decade or so as an herbal anti-anxiety remedy. That is its main claim to fame, and many people report feeling much better after being on this herb consistently for at least a few weeks. It helps to calm the nervous system and helps increase the effectiveness of built in mechanisms that help humans deal with stress. Related: Pineapple Bromelain Enzymes Amazing Health Benefits
It is thought to be therapeutic for fatigued adrenal glands, which are the glands that get overworked when our fight or flight (stress) response kicks in. They produce cortisol, which is the hormone associated with stress. They also produce adrenaline, which is what kicks in when we are either very excited about something, have had a real scare, or have some other event which has transpired that kicks us into overdrive.
Ashwagandha, through the mechanism of improving and managing our response to stress and anxiety, may also have an effect on the amount of food we consume. Because it helps to lower anxiety, which in turn elevates mood, it can impact appetite. Although it is not studied widely specifically for this side effect, one study did find that those on the herb for several weeks straight reported eating less and feeling more satisfied after eating.
So, this herb can definitely benefit those looking to control not only their anxiety and stress levels, but also their appetite. Eating is often a response to stress in individuals, although I’ve talked to many people who say they experience LESS appetite when stressed too. Related: How Managing Stress and Anxiety Slows the Aging Process
So, for those “stress eaters”, ashwagandha can definitely provide a larger benefit in reducing food intake. And, like all the other herbs and supplements discussed her that can reduce appetite, there are no jitters and no stimulant effects with this herb either!
Let’s face it, we all need a little help in reducing our food intake here and there, right? Although these herbal supplements are not long term solutions to weight and appetite control, they are certainly worth a look when you’re trying to get things back on track again. They’re great short term solutions to reducing appetite and getting back into good habits when you find you just need a little extra help.