The effect of ephedrine plus caffeine on plasma lipids and lipoproteins during a 4.2 MJ/day diet.


Buemann B, Marckmann P, Christensen NJ




Int J Obes Relat Metab Disord


The effect of treatment with a combination of ephedrine and caffeine during eight weeks' energy restriction (4.2 MJ/day) on the fasting plasma lipid profile was studied in obese women. Thirty-two women were randomly assigned to either ephedrine 20 mg plus caffeine 200 mg (EC) or placebo three times per day. Weight loss (7.8 +/- 0.63 kg) and loss of fat mass (6.2 +/- 0.49 kg) did not differ significantly between the two groups. Total cholesterol concentration declined from baseline to week 8 (0.58 +/- 0.13 mmol/l) with no significant difference between the two groups. HDL-cholesterol concentration was decreased by 0.14 +/- 0.03 mmol/l at week 4 and week 8 in the placebo group (P < 0.05) but remained unchanged in the EC group. No effect of dieting was seen on plasma triglyceride concentration in the placebo group but a decrease was observed in the EC group at week 8. It is suggested that EC combinations abolish the decline in HDL-cholesterol during active weight loss due to the beta-agonistic properties of ephedrine.