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Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Supplement Review Pyruvate

By I.S.S.A.
Pyruvate is a chemical product of sugar metabolism. A company called Med-Pro Industries owns the patent on pyruvate (does anyone else find the trend of pharmaceutical and supplement companies actually patenting naturally occurring substances disturbing?). Med-Pro licenses out the use of pyruvate to a handful of companies, most notably Twinlab who produce, you guessed it, "Pyruvate Fuel."
Pyruvate is marketed, overmarketed if you ask me, as a dietary supplement with claims that it will increase fat and weight loss. This is reportedly accomplished through an increase in metabolic rate, brought on by supplementing with pyruvate, and a coinciding increase in fat utilization.
While I would agree with those commentators (like Bill) who have called for more research to be done on pyruvate before such bold claims are put forward, I would actually go a step further and advise you to be very skeptical about this supplement. Here's why:
The hype being pushed by the makers and distributors of pyruvate are based on claims that stem from some very dubious studies.
The main human study that pyruvate's fat and weight loss claims are derived from has significant limitations. First, the studies exclusively involved women classified as morbidly obese who were isolated in hospital wards for 3 weeks, virtually confined to their beds, and on a liquid only diet.
While the group taking pyruvate (in very large doses I might add, about 10 times the daily dose people using the supplement get) did lose 48% more fat than the group not taking pyruvate, that 48% was only less than 3 pounds of actual weight (2.86). Remember, these were extremely obese individuals on a liquid diet, not people who are training on a regular basis.
I find the other marketing claims associated with pyruvate to be equally misleading. All in all, I just don't like the way the makers and marketers of pyruvate distort the very limited and inconclusive research that has been done on the product; I'm offended by it.
And to make matters worse, pyruvate is pushed particularly hard on the web and via email marketing. Fitness and the Web are two key elements of my life and my business, so I get a little peeved about things like this. There are a handful of good supplements available that will help you to drop those extra pounds and promote fat loss. I'm convinced that pyruvate is not one of them.


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