EGCG weight loss supplement, but what does the research say?
In the future you're going to see these initials quite often. EGCG is short for epigallocatechin gallate, a substance found in certain herbs, particularly in green tea. You undoubtedly have heard of the many benefits of green tea. Does EGCG cause weight loss?
You can obtain EGCG through drinking green tea or taking a green tea extract supplement which lists the amount per capsule. On average, a cup of green tea will have roughly 100 mg of EGCG per 8 ounces. The amount of EGCG present in green tea varies with different brands of the product, the region the green tea is grown, amount of brewing time, and age of the green tea leaves. A cup of green tea may have as much as 20 mg of caffeine.
Benefit of EGCG for weight loss
There have been few human studies directly evaluating the green tea extract EGCG in weight loss by itself. Many of the EGCG weight loss studies have combined green tea with other supplements. Green teat extract, by itself, that has a EGCG dosage of 300 mg, does not appear to lead to weight loss.
Effect of green tea extract on obese women: a
randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial.
Clin Nutr. 2008. Community Medicine Research Center, National Yang-Ming University, Taipei, Taiwan.
To examine the effect of green tea extract on obese women and to explore the relationship between green tea extract and obesity-related hormone peptides. This study showed no statistical difference in weight reduction in women between the green tea extract and placebo groups after 12 weeks of treatment. The intake of green tea extract (491 mg catechins containing 302 mg EGCG) for 12 weeks is considered safe since no major side effects were present.
Benefit of EGCG in other conditions
In lab studies, EGCG has been found to be a potent anti-antioxidant and to have anti-cancer abilities. In animal studies, EGCG has been found to potentially be helpful in blood sugar control. In human studies, EGCG has been shown to be helpful in reducing infection from the HPV virus in the cervix and the risk for prostate cancer.
EGCG induces apoptosis in human cancer cell lines. Apoptosis means the death of a cell, and in the case of a cancer cell, apoptosis is a good thing. In test tubes, EGCG thwarts the growth of several cancer cells including breast, prostate, lungs, ovaries, and liver.
EGCG and Weight Loss review
Research with EGCG and weigh loss in humans is still quite early, and at this time it appears that green tea and EGCG may help slightly with weight loss when used in high amounts, but long term benefit versus potential risk of high EGCG consumption has yet to be determined.
EGCG may have health benefit as a nutritional supplement for cancer, heart disease, certain viral infections, and neurodegenerative conditions, and perhaps weight loss. However, at this time we donít know the long term safety of taking a high dose EGCG supplement by itself. It is clear from epidemiological studies that long term drinking of green tea is safe and healthy as demonstrated in studies with Japanese green tea drinkers.
Green tea catechin plus caffeine supplementation to a
high-protein diet has no additional effect on body weight maintenance after
Am J Clin Nutr. 2009; Hursel R, Westerterp-Plantenga MS. Maastricht University, Maastricht, The Netherlands.
Green tea (epigallocatechin gallate + caffeine) and protein each were shown to improve body weight maintenance after weight loss. We investigated the effect of a green tea-caffeine mixture added to a high-protein (HP) diet on weight maintenance after body weight loss in moderately obese subjects. The green tea-caffeine mixture, as well as the HP diet, improved WM independently through thermogenesis, fat oxidation, sparing FFM, and, for the HP diet, satiety; a possible synergistic effect failed to appear.