Side Effects of Ripped Fuel Products

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A doctor is having a conversation with a patient.
A doctor is having a conversation with a patient. (Image: amanaimagesRF/amana images/Getty Images)

Twinlab Corporation manufactures a line of Ripped Fuel dietary supplements that includes basic Ripped Fuel, Ripped Fuel Extreme, Ripped Fuel 5X, Ripped Fuel Xtender and Ripped Fuel Physique. The supplements all promise to help you burn fat, build lean muscle mass and become more energetic. While they differ in some specific ingredients and amounts, all contain a similar set of components that can cause side effects. Avoid Ripped Fuel products if you're pregnant or nursing, and consult your doctor first if you have a chronic health condition or are taking prescription medications. Stop taking Ripped Fuel and seek medical help if you experience trouble breathing, facial swelling, lightheadedness or persistent vomiting.

Effect of Caffeine

All Ripped Fuel products contain caffeine as a primary ingredient. The amounts range from 99 milligrams per serving in Ripped Fuel 5X to 220 milligrams in Ripped Fuel Extreme, while some products don't list the milligrams separately on the label. The supplements also contain other ingredients that contain caffeine, including green tea, yerba mate, guarana seed and cocoa seed extracts. Product instructions say to take 2 doses per day, so the amount of caffeine you'd consume daily from Ripped Fuel Extreme -- and possibly other products -- would exceed the 300-milligram total that's considered a moderate intake. This may cause trembling, dizziness, headaches, abnormal heart rhythms, difficulty sleeping and mood changes, especially if you take it along with other caffeine-containing products.

Effect of Green Tea Extract

Green tea leaf extract is included in Ripped Fuel products because it can supposedly boost your metabolism and increase the amount of fat you burn. Ripped Fuel Extreme has the largest amount, with 315 milligrams of the extract in every two-tablet serving, meaning you'd consume 630 milligrams per day. While a safe upper limit hasn't been definitively established, you should consume no more than 500 milligrams daily, according to an article published in "Environmental Health Perspectives" in 2007. The National Institutes of Health reports that compounds in green tea inhibit proper iron absorption and may cause or exacerbate iron-deficiency anemia. Green tea extract may also raise blood pressure, alter your blood sugar and worsen liver disease.

Effect of Niacin

Niacin, also known as vitamin B-3, is a common ingredient in Ripped Fuel products. Like all of the B vitamins, niacin aids with energy metabolism; supplementing with it is thought to supply you with more energy during workouts. While healthy adults need only 14 to 16 milligrams of niacin per day, depending on age and gender, Ripped Fuel 5X has 10 milligrams of niacin and Ripped Fuel Physique contains 40 milligrams in each serving. Consuming more niacin than is necessary may cause your skin to become hot and flushed and can cause vomiting, nausea, itchy or dry skin, headaches and blood sugar fluctuations.

Effect of Yohimbine

Yohimbine is extracted from the bark of yohimbe, a tree native to parts of Africa. It's alleged to promote weight loss and enhance athletic performance. Ripped Fuel Physique includes it as part of a proprietary blend along with tyrosine, caffeine, cocoa, fruit extracts and ginseng root. Yohimbine supplementation can cause nausea, vomiting, bloating, skin rashes, headaches, an abnormally rapid heart rate, drooling, digestive pain and a rise in blood pressure. Consuming very high amounts may cause trouble breathing, a sharp drop in blood pressure and paralysis.

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