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PhenQ Review: Is It Safe and Effective for Weight Loss? An Objective Look

Written by Emily Hirsch, MS, RD

Published on January 8, 2021

Our Expert Rating:

2.8

About This Rating
The average rating of this product is calculated based on the evaluation of the following factors:
  • Support for Claims:2.0
  • Ingredient Safety:3.0
  • Value for the Price:3.0
  • Brand Transparency:3.0

PhenQ is a weight loss supplement claiming to burn fat, suppress appetite, boost energy, and block fat production. While there is some evidence to support these claims, overall PhenQ falls short of its many promises and may not be the miracle weight loss pill people are hoping for.

PhenQ Review: Is It Safe and Effective for Weight Loss? An Objective Look

Pros

  • Offers a 60-day money-back guarantee
  • No significant side effects

Cons

  • Steep price point
  • Very little scientific evidence backing their claims

What Is PhenQ?

PhenQ is a weight loss supplement that promises to burn fat, suppress appetite, and block fat production all while elevating mood and boosting energy levels.

PhenQ is claimed to have the power of 5 weight loss supplements all rolled into one pill.

PhenQ is manufactured by Wolfson Berg Ltd. And although it was brought to market only 5 years ago, Wolfson Berg Ltd. has been developing private label health and wellness products for over thirty years.

Evaluation of Ingredients

α-Lacys Reset

α-Lacys Reset is PhenQ’s crowning achievement and “secret” ingredient. This patented formula contains a combination of two amino acids: alpha-lipoic acid (ALA) and cysteine.

PhenQ has completed their own clinical study on α-Lacys Reset showing that study participants lost weight, reduced body fat, and increased muscle mass.

Their study is limited for various reasons. It has no information regarding the number of participants, no information with respect to variables like food intake and exercise, no information on how body fat was calculated, and their study doesn’t appear in any scientific journal.

A separate study not sponsored by this company did find that supplementation with alpha-lipoic acid (ALA) slightly decreased body weight and BMI.

However, more studies are needed to support this blend of nutrients as a weight loss tool.

Capsimax Powder

Capsimax powder is made from capsaicin, the chemical in chili peppers that makes them spicy.

While more research is needed, some studies suggest that capsaicin may serve as a weight loss tool.

One study found that capsaicin supplementation may help to promote body fat loss.

Chromium Picolinate

Chromium Picolinate is an essential mineral that is naturally present in many foods such as meat, whole grains, and some fruits and vegetables.

Chromium picolinate is a more easily absorbed form of chromium often found in dietary supplements.

Chromium does play a role in carbohydrate and fat metabolism and may help to reduce body fat and body weight.

A 2019 meta-analysis found that chromium supplementation did reduce weight, BMI, and body fat percentage.

However, according to the National Institutes of Health Office of Dietary Supplements, chromium may help reduce body weight and body fat, however, these effects have “little clinical significance.”

Caffeine

Caffeine is the most commonly used stimulant in the world, but can it act as a weight loss tool?

A recent meta-analysis showed that caffeine intake might help promote weight loss, reduce BMI, and lower total body fat.

Additionally, according to a new study from The Journal of Nutrition, women who drink two or three cups of coffee a day have been found to have a lower total body and abdominal fat than those who drink less.

More research is needed to confirm a link between the caffeine in supplemental form and weight loss.

Nopal

The Nopal Cactus, also known as “prickly pears cactus,” is native to the Southwest United States, Spain, Italy, and South Africa.

Nopal contains fiber that may help promote weight loss by decreasing the amount of fat the body absorbs.

This fiber binds to dietary fat and enhances its excretion, in turn, reducing dietary fat available for absorption.

One study found that participants on a 35% fat diet showed an increased fecal fat excretion in comparison to the control group without Nopal cactus in their diet.

It is unclear how this translates to actual pounds lost.

There is no further clinical research to support the claimed weight-loss benefits of nopal.

L-carnitine Fumarate

L-carnitine is a naturally occurring amino acid that is found in foods like red meat, nuts, whole grains, and green vegetables.

L-carnitine plays a role in heart and brain functioning, muscle movement, and helps the body produce energy.

Unfortunately, there is no strong scientific evidence to support the use of L-carnitine for weight loss at this time.

Calcium Carbonate

Calcium is an important nutrient to maintain bone health but there are no recent studies suggesting calcium supplementation can help promote weight loss.

Verdict on Claimed Benefits

Here is our summary of the available support for the claimed benefits of PhenQ, based on the available studies:

  • Weight lossSome Support
  • Burns fatNo Support
  • Suppresses appetiteSome Support
  • Blocks fat productionNo Support
  • Improves moodNo Support
  • Increases energy levelsSome Support

Side Effects, Safety, and Dosage

The recommended dosage of PhenQ is 2 pills per day, one in the morning and a second one with your afternoon meal.

PhenQ is likely safe for most healthy people. Anyone under the age of 18 and all pregnant and breastfeeding women should avoid taking PhenQ.

Because of PhenQ’s caffeine content, people with caffeine sensitivity should not take PhenQ.

Those who are taking any prescription medication or people who have a medical condition should consult their health care provider before taking PhenQ.

Cost and Where to Buy

One bottle of PhenQ is $69.95 and contains 60 pills, which is a month’s supply.

You have the option of purchasing more bottles of PhenQ on their website at a discounted rate.

If you purchase two bottles at $139.90, you will get a free bottle, which lowers the cost to $46.63 per bottle.

Three bottles of PhenQ costs $189.95 but you will receive two free bottles and a free bottle of another product called Advana Cleanse. If you choose this option, you will be paying $37.99 per bottle.

If you’re not satisfied with PhenQ, you can return any unopened bottles within 67 days for a full refund.

Comparison to Alternatives

While there are many weight loss supplements on the market, many contain proprietary blends.

Proprietary blends, sometimes coined “secret ingredients” are combinations of ingredients used exclusively by one supplement manufacturer.

It can be tricky to know the exact amounts of each of the ingredients in these specific blends, like the one in PhenQ.

Instant Knockout is a weight loss pill that contains similar ingredients to PhenQ. You can purchase a one month’s supply directly through the website for $59.

Another weight loss supplement with a similar nutritional profile to PhenQ is Leanbean. A month’s supply of Leanbean is $59.

The Bottom Line

PhenQ is not the miracle pill you’re hoping for to help burn fat and shed weight. While some of the ingredients in PhenQ have some evidence to help promote weight loss, the studies are very limited.

Ironically, weight loss pills often have the unintended consequence of actually promoting weight gain.

People often treat these “miracle” pills as a green light to ditch tried and true methods like healthy eating and exercise, leading to the dreaded yo-yo dieting cycle.

Additionally, weight loss pills are a temporary solution to a problem that requires a lifestyle change to promote sustainability.

The reality of losing weight isn’t quick or easy. Anyone or any pill that claims otherwise will likely leave your wallet empty and your scale full.

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