(Linday Lohan, Nicole Richie)
A handful of celebrities have used Ephedra to reduce their waist line, including Rachel Zoe, Nicole Richie, and Linday Lohan. Ephedra is the active ingredient in the ancient Chinese plant Ma Huang; it is closely related to speed and has the same deadly side effects on the body. It has been detected ingredient in not only Ephedra, but in Hydroxycut, HerbalLife, and a few others. The FDA has reported numberous heart attacks, liver damage, and even mortality due to this drug and has band its use in the U.S. However, weight loss companies can still incorporate other parts of the plant in their recipe. This includes the plant’s leaves, stems, and even roots that still contain trace amounts of ephedrine. (Note: some companies have completely removed this drug from their products, but the FDA cannot fully regulate and support claims on any weight loss product).
Ephedra is used in diet products as an appetite depressant and stimulant, and in sports drinks to mask fatigue.
The chemical breakdown: How it works…
Ephedrine enhances the release of the hormone norepinephrine in the body, and also binds to the same receptors as that hormone, causing excess calories to be converted to heat instead of being stored as fat. It also raises blood pressure. Epinephrine and norepinephrine are also known as adrenaline and noradrenaline. Ephedrine thus acts to stimulate an “adrenaline rush”.
Ephedrine by itself has been shown to be ineffective as a weight loss treatment. Ephedrine combined with either caffeine or aspirin was effective. The effect appears to be caused by a reduction in appetite, and preventing the metabolic rate decrease usually associated with a reduced calorie diet.
For a more in depth chemical description click on the following link http://sci-toys.com/ingredients/ephedrine.html