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Optimum Nutrition Thermo Cuts

The Thermo Cuts capsules are said to provide users with the additional nutritional support needed to attain their weight loss goals. They are not claimed to be a miracle pill but are aimed at those who partake in regular training.

Optimum Nutrition Thermo Cuts

Optimum Nutrition Thermo Cuts Pros
  • The pills contain some ingredients which are proven to be thermogenic agents
Optimum Nutrition Thermo Cuts Cons
  • No money back guarantee is offered
  • Specific quantities of most of the ingredients are not made available to view prior to purchase
  • Other ingredients are not proven for weight loss
  • Users must take part in regular exercise to see maximum results

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Optimum Nutrition Thermo Cuts Review

The Thermo Cuts capsules aim to support users who are looking to lose fat and improve their muscle tone. Given their supportive role, they are formulated specifically with active individuals in mind and are recommended for those who take part in regular exercise programmes such as bodybuilders. There are some mixed consumer reviews about how powerful the product is, but these generally seem to be more positive than negative with most satisfied with their purchase. The manufacturers boast that it contains what is called the Proprietary ThermoCuts Blend which assumedly sets it apart from other products of the same nature.

Optimum Nutrition Thermo Cuts Claimed weight loss benefits

Unfortunately the manufacturers of this product do not make any specific claims about its potential weight loss properties. Although they do recommend that a healthy diet and regular exercise is key to healthy, long term weight loss, they do not provide any specific diet plan for users to follow. Having said this, given its name and the ingredients that have been used within the capsules, we are inclined to believe that if the company were to put these pills into one of the weight loss categories, this is most likely to be as a fat burner/binder and a metabolism enhancer.

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How Optimum Nutrition Thermo Cuts Works

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As emphasised by the manufacturers themselves, these capsules play more of a supportive role rather than effecting weight loss directly. Although there is not much information about this on the website, they appear to work by increasing energy and mental focus in users theoretically enabling them to withstand longer or more strenuous exercise. As well as this though, due to the fact that they contain a lot of thermogenic ingredients, the pills may also play a role in boosting the metabolism which in turn has been thought to increase the amount of fat that can be burnt inside the body.

Chromium
Chromium is thought to aid weight loss in a number of different ways all of which are linked to its believed ability to increase the body’s sensitivity to insulin and how effectively we use it. It has been suggested that by doing this, Chromium can maintain blood sugar levels preventing large fluctuations meaning that the body craves less food. Due to insulin’s role in fat production, it is also alleged that Chromium can help prevent the build-up of excess fat and some also claim that because protein synthesis is regulated by insulin, it can stimulate muscle growth.

Garcinia Cambogia Extract
This ingredient is said to be beneficial for weight loss because it contains high quantities of Hydroxycitric Acid. Due to this, Garcinia Cambogia is usually associated with fat inhibition because the acid is claimed to be able to slow down the functioning of an enzyme called ATP-citrate lyase which converts the carbohydrates that we eat into fat. As well this, there are alleged links between Hydroxycitric Acid and the management of Cortisol, a stress hormone. This means that the extract is believed to aid weight loss by preventing excess fat from being formed and increasing energy and mental wellbeing so that more exercise can be done.

White Kidney Bean Extract
The extract from white kidney beans has been claimed to be able to slow down the body’s absorption of carbohydrates. This is thought to be because it produces an alpha-amylase inhibitor meaning that it reduces the efficiency of the enzymes responsible for digesting these compounds.

Guarana
Guarana’s weight loss properties tend to be attributed to its high Caffeine content. It is a stimulant ingredient and is said to be able to effect the rate at which thermogenesis happens inside the body. By speeding up this process, the body can potentially burn more calories because it is using up stored energy quicker. This is thought to have two knock on effects; the first being that it increases the metabolism since the body needs to replace this energy more quickly, and the second being that it releases energy faster giving those who consume it an energy boost.

Green Tea
Also a stimulant, Green Tea is thought to have much of the same weight loss effects as Guarana. As well as containing Caffeine though, Green Tea is also made up of catechins of which EGCG in particular has been linked to increases in the metabolic rate and enhanced fat burning.

Conjugated Linoleic Acid
This acid is long claimed to affect body weight via its ability to break down fat. When it is ingested, it is believed to makes its way into fat cells where it breaks down stored fat and releases it into the bloodstream. This is obviously beneficial for weight loss since it means that individuals would be able to burn off more fat more quickly.

NeOpuntia Extract
This extract is a brand name for the ingredient Opuntia ficus-indica. This has been suggested to aid in weight loss due to its fibrous properties. It is thought to reduce body fat by binding to the fat we eat meaning that it is not absorbed as weight gain but excreted out of the body.

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Key Ingredients

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The manufacturers of the Thermo Cuts capsules provide an exhaustive list of all ingredients including the fillers and binders used in the pills on their website. What is not made explicit however is exactly how much of each individual ingredient has been used and this is because most of the active ingredients are found in the proprietary ThermoCuts blend. The capsules are made up of over 10 ingredients so we have chosen to examine those that are most commonly linked to claims concerning weight loss. We have not included Caffeine because it is so well known but the pills contain 300mg of this.

Chromium
Chromium is a type of mineral that is found in some of the foods that we eat. As well as being contained in weight loss products, Chromium has also been used as a supplement in its own right to lower cholesterol, manage blood sugar levels and treat conditions such as close diabetes and pre-diabetes due to the effects that it is thought to have on insulin. Not all uses have been approved by the Food and Drug Administration however. The body only needs a very small amount of this mineral for its normal function and so Chromium deficiency tends to be quite rare.

Garcinia Cambogia Extract
Originating in Indonesia, Garcinia Cambogia extract comes from a plant whose fruit resembles a small, green pumpkin. This fruit, which is sour in taste, has often been used for culinary purposes most commonly in curries and Asian cuisine. In terms of weight loss however, it is the Hydroxycitric Acid found in the skin that is most important. Previous uses of Garcinia Cambogia are often linked to the functioning of the digestive system and include the treatment of worms and parasites, constipation and diarrhoea. Having said this, there is currently insufficient evidence in terms of its effectiveness for these conditions.

White Kidney Bean Extract
Most commonly known for their everyday use in cooking, white kidney beans are also known as Cannellini beans. The plant on which they grow, the Phaseolus vulgaris, is native to Peru but the beans are very popular in parts of Italy. They are large, dry and kidney like in shape, hence their name. Nutritionally, they are a good source of fibre, vitamins and minerals but tend to be low in fat making them a healthy addition to the diet. Aside from being eaten as a regular foodstuff though, they have recently been used as what has become known as a ‘starch blocker’.

Guarana
Guarana was originally grown in South America and has previously been sold as an herbal supplement to treat headaches and diarrhoea. It is known to look a lot like a coffee bean and, also like Coffee, it too contains Caffeine. As well as this it contains a variety of other stimulant compounds such as theophylline and theobromine. An important point to remember about this ingredient is that it has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration in terms of its use as a weight loss aid which means that there may be unknown effects. These could be beneficial or dangerous in nature.

Green Tea
Green Tea extract comes from the leaves of the Camellia Sinensis plant. These leaves are usually consumed as a stewed beverage but they have also been used in medicine for over 5,000 years. In China, this ingredient has been used as a traditional remedy to treat a variety of conditions including stomach problems and to lower cholesterol. As well as this, it is well known in the diet industry for its mix of Caffeine and catechins, the quantities of which vary. The manufacturers of Thermo Cuts state that the extract used in their capsules contains 40% EGCG and 22% Caffeine.

Conjugated Linoleic Acid
This acid is in fact made up of over 28 isomers of linoleic acid and is essential to the nutrition of mammals. We get most of what we need through our dietary intake since Conjugated Linoleic Acid is usually found in meat, vegetable oils and dairy products although levels will vary. In 1987 the acid was shown to have anti-cancer properties for rodent subjects and this caused more research to be undertaken with regards to any other effects it may have. Since then, it has been sold as both a supplement on its own and been included in diet products.

NeOpuntia Extract
Opuntia ficus-indica is more commonly known as the Prickly Pear. It has been used commercially for a variety of purposes including in jellies, tea and alcoholic drinks. Both the fruit and flowers that grow from this plant are used as natural food colorants. It has previously been used in traditional Mexican folk medicine as a treatment for diabetes and also for burns by American Indians. As well as this, some have recommended it to treat inflammation and ulcers although because the ingredient has mostly been used in folk medicine there is little research to say whether these uses are justified.

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Clinical Studies

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There is no mention of this product having undergone any form of clinical testing on the manufacturers’ website and there are also no references made to any trials in terms of the individual ingredients that have been used. Clinical studies are particularly helpful in the diet industry because they assess both the effectiveness and the safety of various ingredients. They provide useful and (usually) impartial information which can help us to determine the realistic power of a weight loss product. Just because there is no discussion of these by the manufacturers, this is not to say that all of the ingredients are untested.

Chromium
There have been some conflicting studies about whether Chromium can actually help with weight loss. One study found that when compared to a placebo, Chromium reduced the carbohydrate cravings and appetite of overweight or obese adults who were suffering from atypical depression. Whether they had lost any body weight was not measured. This appears to be quite a limited study in terms of how far it goes in proving that Chromium would induce weight loss in otherwise healthy but overweight subjects and further to this, a later trial actually concluded that a 1000 mcg supplement of Chromium (over 3 times the amount used in the Thermo Cuts capsules) when used in combination with nutritional education, had no effect whatsoever on weight loss.

Garcinia Cambogia Extract
There is also uncertainty about the weight loss power of Garcinia Cambogia. In terms of positive results, a trial carried out in 2003 examined the effects of this ingredient on visceral fat accumulation. Half of the subjects were given the extract containing 1000 mg of Hydroxycitric Acid for 12 weeks whilst the rest received a placebo. The results showed that those taking Garcinia Cambogia had significantly reduced visceral fat levels than the placebo group. Having said that, this type of fat surrounds the heart and is unlikely to affect weight loss. In fact, during the trial it was noted that there were no significant differences in the body weight of subjects at the end of the 12 weeks. In addition, another study which looked at body weight and fat loss specifically found that the amount of weight subjects had lost did not differ statistically between those who were given the extract and those were not. There were also no significant differences in the estimated percentage of body fat that was lost between the groups.

White Kidney Bean Extract
The potential power of white kidney bean extract for weight loss is also unclear. One study which lasted 4 weeks took 25 healthy subjects and gave them either a placebo or 1000mg of a proprietary fractioned white bean extract twice a day before meals. They also took part in a weight loss programme including diet, exercise and behavioural intervention. The results showed that only the subjects who had eaten the most carbohydrates and had taken the extract lost significantly more than those who ate the same amount but were given the placebo. This suggests that while this ingredient does have some weight loss benefits, these are only likely to be in those who have a high carbohydrate intake.

Guarana
A study which took place in 2001 examined the weight loss power of Guarana in overweight human subjects over a period of 8 weeks. Half of the subjects received a placebo whilst the other half were administered Guarana in the form of an herbal dietary supplement containing 72mg per day of ephedrine alkaloids and 240mg per day of Caffeine. The results demonstrated that the latter group had lost significantly more weight, and specifically more fat, than the placebo group. This suggests that Guarana can help to reduce weight and promote at least short term weight loss.

Green Tea
There is a vast amount of research that yields positive results for the weight loss potential of Green Tea. One trial in particular looked at its effects on energy expenditure and fat oxidation in human subjects. The relatively small study used 10 subjects and lasted for a period of 24 hours. Each subjects was given 1 of 3 treatments including a Green Tea extract made up of 50mg caffeine and 90mg Epigallocatechin gallate, a 50mg dose of caffeine on its own, or a placebo. These were taken 3 times per day with each meal. The results showed that the Green Tea had significantly increased energy expenditure by approximately 4% when compared to the control group. This demonstrates that the Green Tea had increased the thermogenic rate of subjects who had then experienced a corresponding increase in metabolism.

Conjugated Linoleic Acid
This is also an ingredient which has caused some confusion concerning its weight loss capabilities. A review of clinical trials dating up to 2012 concluded that there had been a statistically significant difference in weight loss between the Conjugated Linoleic Acid and a placebo and also that there was a small significant difference specifically in fat loss. The researchers concluded however that the evidence was unconvincing and that the magnitude of the effects of the acid were small so the clinical relevance of the differences is uncertain. Furthermore they stated that the trials had not shown that the acid causes any clinically relevant effects on body composition in the long term.

NeOpuntia Extract
A trial carried out in 2014 investigated the effects of Opuntia ficus-indica on the excretion of dietary fat in healthy subjects. It lasted for a period of 45 days in which 20 subjects were randomly chosen to receive the ingredient in the form of 2 tablets, 3 times per day with meals. The remaining subjects were given a placebo. Two 24-hour faeces samples were collected and their fat content was analysed. The results showed that those taking the Opuntia ficus-indica had an increased faecal fat excretion when compared with the control group. It was concluded that the results of this study support the claim that this ingredient can reduce body weight by binding dietary fat. Having said this, the amount of the extract given was undisclosed.

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Results

Weight Loss Power: 35/100

Given the more supportive nature of these pills, weight loss power was quite a difficult score to make. Due to the lack of or negative clinical evidence for some of the ingredients, it is uncertain whether this product will induce significant weight loss on its own. However, the manufacturers do not actually claim this and emphasise that regular exercise is needed. With that in mind, there are some proven thermogenic ingredients which means that it can potentially provide an energy and metabolism boost for users. We cannot say for sure however because their exact quantities are unknown.
Speed of results: 40/100

No information is given by the manufacturers which states how long the pills should take to work. In terms of real weight loss results, this will depend largely on the amount of exercise that users are able to do so is likely to be different for each individual. Some customer reviews state that a difference was seen in as little as a few weeks.
Appetite Suppression: 30/100

This product is not claimed to work as an appetite suppressant and so there are no ingredients that have been used solely for this purpose. Having said this, the capsules do contain a lot of stimulants which in general are known to suppress the appetite and the Chromium used may or may not induce this kind of effect.
Long Term Results: 50/100

The ingredients used in the Thermo Cuts capsules do not make any permanent changes to the body of users. It is likely that they will have to maintain the use of the pills if they want to keep their energy levels at the same point. That being said, the body may get used to withstanding the increased amount of exercise. Furthermore, since the pills are aimed at those who do a lot of training, it is possible that the extra weight dropped using the pills can be maintained without them and won’t be put back on if users continue exercising.
Safety: 45/100

Most side effects associated with this product come from the fact that it contains a lot of stimulants and fibre. Though usually relatively mild in severity, they are likely to be fairly common down to the sheer amount of stimulant ingredients used. This will however depend on the individual sensitivity of users and the amounts of ingredients. The manufacturers do warn though that if you are sensitive to Caffeine then it is not a good idea for you to use the product.
Value for money: 50/100

Buying directly from the manufacturers means that users will be paying £1.40 per day for the pills. This seems a very reasonable price. Although some of the ingredients are unproven, those that are will provide users with an energy boost and if it is understood that this is their aim, then purchasing them for this price does seem good value for money. Having said this, the results in terms of weight loss will depend largely on the effort made by the user so if you are not going to put the effort in then the value for money will decrease.

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Optimum Nutrition Thermo Cuts Side Effects

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There are no side effects which might result from taking these pills mentioned on the product’s main website. However the manufacturers do give a clear warning stating that you should not take Thermo Cuts if you are sensitive to caffeine or stimulants. This is due to the fact that these commonly cause symptoms, admittedly mild, that can cause discomfort for users. Some have even voiced the fact that they have become very jittery or anxious after having taking this product. As well as this, some of the other ingredients have been said to cause minor digestive symptoms.

Chromium
Although Chromium is considered safe when found in foods. As a supplement, this ingredient may cause stomach irritation, itching, and flushing. In much rarer cases it has been said to result in irregular heartbeat, liver and kidney problems. This is not common though and all of these symptoms are linked to much higher doses than that contained in the Thermo Cuts capsules.

Garcinia Cambogia Extract
At the time of writing there have been very little side effects associated with this extract. In fact, the only ones noted have been little more than mild intolerance as the body adjusts to the new intake. Most common symptoms include nausea, discomfort of the digestive tract and headaches. Aside from this though, there does not seem to be any other concerns.

White Kidney Bean Extract
The Food and Drug Administration have concluded that white kidney bean extract is generally safe when found in foods. As a supplement though, their fibrous content may cause minor digestive problems such as diarrhoea, constipation and bloat.

Guarana
Most side effects associated with Guarana come from the fact that it is a stimulant. Possible symptoms include loose stools, headaches, anxiety, nausea, vomiting, tremors, and of course insomnia. Aside from this, there have also been some exceptional cases in which the ingredient has caused skin rashes, difficulty breathing, itching, swelling of the mouth or face, seizures or irregular heartbeat. This is not common however and is usually attributed to an allergic reaction.

Green Tea Extract
Also known to be a stimulant, the side effects most often associated with Green Tea are of a similar nature those mentioned above for Guarana.

Conjugated Linoleic Acid
WebMD states that this acid is likely safe when it is taken in the same amounts that are found in foods but only possibly safe when taken in medicinal amounts. It is thought that stomach upset, diarrhoea, fatigue and nausea are all potential side effects.

NeOpuntia Extract
The most common reaction to the Opuntia ficus-indica is dermatitis but it has also been known to cause symptoms similar to the ingredients above. These include headaches, bloating, mild diarrhoea and possibly nausea.

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How To Use

The manufacturers state that for best results, users should take 4 capsules per day. 2 of these should be taken 30 minutes before breakfast and the remaining 2, 30 minutes before lunch. It does not specify whether they should be taken with water but this is always recommended especially when a product contains a high amount of Caffeine. This implies that users should not use the pills in close proximity to bedtime which is unsurprising given their stimulant content. It is also said that this product is aimed to support users alongside their training programme which suggests that users should also be exercising regularly when taking the pills.

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Who Makes Optimum Nutrition Thermo Cuts

The Thermo Cuts capsules are made by a company called Optimum Nutrition Inc. There is relatively little information about them on the UK version of the site, but the US one provides a separate page describing the company. It is said to have been established in 1986 and owns 2 premium sports nutrition brands – Optimum Nutrition and ABB Performance. It sells an extensive range of products all in the weight loss, nutrition and fitness category which leads us to believe that it has ample knowledge and experience of the market. The company does not appear on any fraud or scam boards and is said to be linked to a number of athletes.

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Where To Buy

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Although unavailable to buy in UK shops, the Thermo Cuts capsules are readily available for consumers to purchase online with the exception being that it is currently unavailable on Amazon.co.uk. It is well worth having a look and shopping around because prices seem to differ a lot between websites. Consumers can purchase 100 capsules directly from the manufacturers for £34.99 plus a delivery charge of £4.95. No money back guarantee is offered but the company does provide sufficient contact details should you need to get in touch. A much cheaper alternative would be to purchase the pills from an online retailer called Dolphin Fitness which sells the same amount of capsules for the considerably lower price of £14.95 inclusive of delivery.

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Overall Verdict

The Thermo Cuts capsules certainly have the potential to live up to their claim as a nutritional support for those who are taking part in a training programme. It contains ingredients proven to provide an energy boost and the side effects, although common should only be mild. Having said this, a lot of its ingredients are not proven for weight loss, so on their own, the weight loss power of the pills is questionable. This is why it is extremely important to recognise that these pills are only intended as an aid and not as a direct provider of weight loss.

Overall: 45/100

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