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Papers of the Week

2022 Jun

J Prev Med Hyg


2 Suppl 3

Dietary supplements for lipedema.


Bonetti G, Herbst KL, Dhuli K, Kiani A K, Michelini S, Michelini S, Ceccarini M R, Michelini S, Ricci M, Cestari M, Codini M, Beccari T, Bellinato F, Gisondi P, Bertelli M
J Prev Med Hyg. 2022 Jun; 63(2 Suppl 3):E169-E173.
PMID: 36479502.


Lipedema is a chronic disease that mostly manifests in females as the abnormal distribution of subcutaneous adipose connective tissue, usually coupled with bruising, pain, and edema. Lipedema molecular pathophysiology is currently not clear, but several studies suggest that genetics and hormonal imbalance participate in lipedema pathogenesis. Women with lipedema present in some cases with elevated body mass index, and the appearance of obesity in addition to lipedema, where the obesity can cause serious health issues as in lipedema-free individuals with obesity, such as diabetes and cardiovascular disorders. Unlike obesity, lipedema tissue does not respond well to diet or physical exercise alone. Therefore, in this review we discuss the effect of various dietary supplements that, along with diet and physical exercise, cause fat burning and weight loss, and which could potentially be important in the treatment of lipedema. Indeed, an effective fat burner should convert stored fats into energy, mobilize and break down triglycerides in adipocytes, boost metabolism and inhibit lipogenesis. Common ingredients of fat burning supplements are green tea, caffeine, chromium, carnitine, and conjugated linoleic acid. The use of fat burners could act synergistically with a healthy diet and physical exercise for decreasing adipose tissue deposition in patients with lipedema and resolve related health issues. The effects of fat burners in human studies are sometimes contradictory, and further studies should test their effectiveness in treating lipedema.