2007 -2009 Undergraduate Research in Nutrition and Food Science
Background: Weight gain is a problem that numerous college students struggle with. For many students then losing the unwanted “freshman fifteen or twenty” proves challenging. College students are turning to dietary supplements, such as Hydroxycut, in an effort to lose this weight. When used properly, with diet and exercise, Hydroxycut has been shown to decrease hunger and, thus, weight in users.
Subjects: To evaluate the effectiveness of the original formula Hydroxycut a survey was distributed to undergraduate students at the University of Kentucky.
Results: Of the 165 participants surveyed, less than 5% of those had experimented with Hydroxycut. Supplement use was similar in males and females. Of the 72 females (age 20.7+/- 1.48) 2.7% reported Hydroxycut use while 3.2% of the 93 males (age 20.2 +/- 1.43). Those students who had taken Hydroxycut reported side effects while taking the supplement, most frequently related to increased heart rate and heart palpitations.
Conclusions: More research needs to be done about the safety and efficacy of Hydroxycut and other supplements marketed to consumers for weight loss. It is encouraging that such a low percentage of undergraduate college students are using this potentially dangerous supplement.