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Dr. Oz hails raspberry ketone as a weight-loss miracle

Dr. Oz recently tooted the fat fighting benefits of raspberry ketone in one of his television show episodes. (Credit: Getty Images)It's flying off the shelves on both sides of the border. Dr. Oz calls it the No. 1 miracle in a bottle. Raspberry ketone (RK) is the latest-and-greatest fat-burning elixir to hit health stores.

Daytime television's favourite doctor, Dr. Mehmet Oz, recently praised raspberry ketone supplements for its metabolism-boosting, fat-burning properties, claiming it is great for fighting belly fat.

According to The Dr. Oz show website:

"Raspberry ketone is the primary aroma compound of red raspberries, and is a safe and healthy supplement with no side effects. This compound regulates adiponectin, a hormone that causes your body too boost metabolism. In turn, the fat within your cells gets broken up more effectively, helping your body burn fat faster and more efficiently. In order to get enough ketone to have an effect on the way your body burns its excess fat, you would need to consume 90 pounds of raspberries! But, just 100mg of the supplement per day is enough to get your body burning fat the way you want it to."

Thanks to Oz's televised endorsement, Toronto health stores can't keep enough in stock, the Toronto Star reports. FOX Charlotte reports the same in North Carolina.

Related: Chia Seeds: The new super food?

It might be safe, but is it effective? No one really knows.

So far, only two minor studies on raspberry ketone have been conducted — one in 2005 and another in 2010 — and neither included human trials. Both studies found that when high doses of raspberry ketone were added to the high-fat diets of lab mice, the mice had increased metabolisms and were less likely to gain weight.

Dr. Robert Lustig, a neuroendocrinologist and professor of pediatrics at the University of California, criticized the current research on raspberry keytone in an email to Huffington Post. He suggests the leap from mice trials to the assumption that raspberry ketone is a  weight loss fix for human is inaccurate.

"Raspberry ketone might make 3T3L1 cells engage in lipolysis, but that is a far cry from doing it in humans," he writes.

Health Canada currently only categorizes raspberry ketone as a flavour enhancer.

Will you try raspberry ketone? Or do you stick with the tried-and-true "eat less, work out more" mantra when trying to ditch those stubborn unwanted pounds?

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