Quercetin is all the rage, but maybe you’ve got questions about whether it’s the right weight loss option for you.
Are you a connoisseur of weight loss ingredients?
If so, you may have heard the hype surrounding Quercetin and its health benefits.
Or – more importantly – maybe you’ve heard it can be a route to quicker weight loss?
In this blog we’ll dig deep and tell you 7 things you need to know about Quercetin.
Even if you’ve heard of Quercetin you may not know exactly what it is…
So: Quercetin is a polyphenolic nutrient compound known as a flavonol, a type of molecule that also functions as an antioxidant.
The compound is commonly found in fruits and vegetables such as berries, onions, capers, leafy greens, and tomatoes.
Most people get their Quercetin from apples and potatoes.
On top of this, several studies have found that organically-grown fruit and veg tends to contain more Quercetin than those that are grown conventionally.
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Here’s what it’s designed to do:
- Get food cravings under control to help you eat less
- Get your energy levels up to help you be more active
- Support a healthy, balanced lifestyle
2. Quercetin Might Help Boost Your Health!
Quercetin is understood to help reduce inflammation in the body.
The compound may play a role in the inhibition of cytokines, a type of cell that promotes inflammation.
As a result, quercetin could potentially be used to control inflammation associated conditions, including:
- Allergic reactions
- Heart disease
- Autoimmune illnesses
- High Cholesterol
According to certain studies, Quercetin has been shown to decrease illness following intense exercise, especially upper respiratory infections such as coronaviruses and adenoviruses.
One study found that dosing with a 1000 mg dose of quercetin before, during and after a winter cycling regimen resulted in far fewer upper respiratory infections in participants.
Another study found that 2 weeks of daily 1000 mg quercetin supplementation reduced the rate of any illness in untrained young males compared to a placebo.
Sounds good, hey?
Other studies have called into question the benefits of this extract, however, and at best it seems the depth of Quercetin’s effects can vary. So it is not entirely understood at this time just how helpful Quercetin might in the battle against infections and illness.
Most studies regarding quercetin and blood pressure have found that daily doses of 150 to 500 mg over several weeks can decrease both systolic and diastolic blood pressure.
3. Quercetin May Help Reduce Your Blood Pressure.
As a flavonoid, quercetin is known to play a role in the regulation of blood pressure.
Flavonoids are substances supposedly affecting vascular resistance, total blood volume, vascular contraction rate, as well as the overall strength of cells within the cardiovascular system.
Quercetin also acts on cells associated with the kidneys to adjust sodium reabsorption as needed based on blood volume, which in turn adjusts blood pressure.
Most studies regarding quercetin and blood pressure have found that daily doses of 150 to 500 mg over several weeks can decrease both systolic and diastolic blood pressure in participants with stage 1 hypertension, but it is important to note that these effects have not been found in people with prehypertension.
4. The Optimal Dose of Quercetin is Not Yet Known.
While it’s clear that quercetin supplementation may have merit when it comes to things like controlling blood pressure and reducing inflammation, narrowing down an effective dosage is difficult.
Quercetin supplements tend to have low bioavailability, meaning that the amount consumed is very high compared to what is actually absorbed and used by the body.
This means that unrealistically large doses may be required each day in order to see any benefits, something that is likely down to the fact that it is not well absorbed by the intestines.
To explain this further, Quercetin glucoside, has been estimated at between just 3 and 17 percent in healthy individuals, and some studies have concluded Quercetin’s bioavailability to be only 2 percent for a single dose.
Additionally, individual factors such as vitamin C intake, gender, and type of foods consumed can affect the bioavailability of quercetin.
5. There is Little Evidence That Quercetin Boosts Exercise Endurance Significantly.
Another possible function of Quercetin is its apparent effect on capacity for endurance exercise, typically measured using VO2max (the measurement of aerobic capacity).
Various studies have been done in order to try and prove a link between this antioxidant and endurance.
One research paper by the Georgia Institute of Technology has concluded that taking 1000 mg of Quercetin per day for 2 weeks did indeed provide a statistically significant increase in VO2max and endurance exercise capacity.
If you’re not a scientist, these results might sound promising…
But unfortunately, statistical significance does not always mean real-life significance.
So whilst the study did find a link between Quercetin and improved exercise performance, the benefit was so small that the authors referred to it as trivial.
Additionally, a number of other studies have concluded that quercetin supplementation does not play any role in endurance exercise capacity, these conflicting results make it quite difficult to determine if such an effect even exists at all.
Quercetin is linked to some health benefits but there are no proven links, and the ideal dose is not yet known.
6. Quercetin is Unlikely to Help Women Burn Body Fat.
The million-dollar question:
Can Quercetin help you burn fat?
Theoretically, Quercetin has the ability to decrease the creation of new fat cells whilst increasing the rate of at which fat cells are destroyed. It is also thought to control the rate at which enzymes associated with fat storage go about their functions.
So far so good.
Additionally, studies on mice that were fed a high-fat diet have concluded that Quercetin supplementation did decrease the onset of obesity when compared to other mice consuming the same diet without a Quercetin supplement (11). Scientists went even further and concluded that this effect was down to Quercetin’s effect on genes related to fat metabolism.
So, quercetin can help you beat a bad diet and burn body fat, right? Not so fast!
Although animal studies can be relevant in some situations, it appears that humans are quite different from mice when it comes to losing weight. One study of normal-weight women found no compelling evidence that Quercetin had a thermic (fat-burning) effect in humans when compared with placebo group (12).
On top of this other animal studies have also been inconsistent, with some even reporting weight gain as a result of Quercetin supplementation (11). More research is certainly ideal at this point, but it appears that fat-burning is just not something Quercetin can help with in in humans.
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7. Studies Show No Effect on Weight Loss or Body Composition in Humans.
Although exercise performance may get a slight boost as a result of Quercetin intake, this does not necessarily equate to a decrease in body fat or overall weight loss.
Using supplemental quercetin on its own without any other lifestyle changes certainly will not do the trick. In order to get these types of results, you’ll need longer duration and higher doses of supplementation.
Unlike mice, the human body appears to have minimal response to Quercetin when it comes to weight loss and body composition change, and human studies have typically concluded that there is no effect.
For example, one study in Germany concluded that 6 weeks of Quercetin supplementation at 150 mg/day resulted in no change in weight, body fat mass, lean muscle mass, or waist circumference.
Sadly, it seems that quercetin is not in fact a miracle weight loss ingredient.
Quercetin is NOT a miracle weight loss ingredient!
Conclusion: Should I supplement with quercetin?
Studies surrounding the effects of Quercetin on athletic performance and weight loss have had mixed results: it’s difficult to determine whether or not your body will actually absorb and make use of it.
That said, Quercetin is generally regarded as a safe supplement, and whilst its effectiveness may vary depending on many factors it is still conceivable that you could see some benefits.
You may find your results vary compared to a friend or even research studies, depending on your personal health status, vitamin or mineral deficiencies, or other factors.
If you do choose to try quercetin for any reason, be consistent with taking it each day and realize that it may be several weeks or even months until effects occur (if they do at all).
Disclaimer: The information on the Leanbean blog does not constitute medical advice and should not be used as such. If you would like to learn more about your dietary requirements and related aspects of your health, speak with a registered medical professional.