Posted by: Chris Maloney | March 22, 2012

Dr. Oz and Tim Ferriss: Three Simple Tips To Weight Loss Explored.

Yerba Mate

Yerba Mate (Photo credit: morrissey)

I should say that I love reading about Tim Ferriss, but don’t necessarily follow what he says.  A number of the things he tries on himself are downright nuts.

So recently Tim Ferriss appeared on Dr. Oz with three tips to lose weight starting in the morning.

It was really four tips.  The first was thirty grams of fat within thirty minutes of waking up.  Evidently this had been mentioned on a previous show.

It’s the “30/30” Rule

The three that Tim came up with are:

1) All fat cream in your coffee.  Less insulin production.  Two teaspoons.

2) Yerba mate “fat flushing” tea.  Speed digestion, reduce lipase from the pancreas.  Antioxidants, etc. Cup.

3) Cassia cinnamon, not Ceylon cinnamon.  Stable blood sugar.  Teaspoon.


Let’s look at the two “supplements” first.

First, Yerba Mate as a weight loss supplement.  The studies of capsules did show about ten pounds of weight loss on three caps a day for 45 days.  But after twelve months, no further weight was lost.   The Yerba Mate almost doubled the time for the subjects to empty their stomachs, so watch for increased GERD.

Basically, like a high fiber supplement.  Initial weight loss with body accommodation.

Second, Cassia vs. Ceylon cinnamon.  Really no difference in animal studies.  The human trials show conflicting support.  If you like the taste, use either to help balance blood sugar.

Now let’s look at high cream in the coffee.

Coffee, with its caffeine, speeds the metabolism and leads to short-term weight loss.  We have no studies on the use of cream for weight loss.  I expect that Tim did a trial (of himself?) and found that his blood sugar was more even with cream.  Not really compelling.  Increasing dietary fat increases body oxidation.

Finally, the 30/30 rule.  Do we have any evidence that eating protein first thing in the morning helps with weight loss?  Well, there are no studies on that I could find.  But eating tryptophan in the morning does help the body rhythm.  Adding in sunlight to the morning also helps.  So I’d say this might be helpful, but possibly for reasons unrelated to weight loss directly.  For parents, have a look at the moderation in mood for these children.

J Hum Nutr Diet. 2001 Jun;14(3):243-50.


Department of Ultrasound, Medical Center Charlottenlund, Trunnevangen 4A, DK 2920, Charlottenlund, Denmark.



Obesity and overweight may soon affect more than half of the population in some regions of the world and are associated with diabetes, hypertension and other diseases that cause morbidity, mortality and high health-care expenditure. No one approach, whether dietetic management, medication, or commercial weight loss programme, can alone solve the problem–all potential treatments need to be investigated and exploited. Among the herbal preparations known to non-western cultures are materials which may have applications in modulating physiological processes which influence gut motility, food intake and energy balance. One such mixed herbal preparation is ‘YGD’ containing Yerbe Maté (leaves of Ilex paraguayenis), Guarana (seeds of Paullinia cupana) and Damiana (leaves of Turnera diffusa var. aphrodisiaca).


This study had two distinct aims: to determine the effect of a herbal preparation ‘YGD’ containing Yerbe Maté, Guarana and Damiana on gastric emptying; to determine the effect of the same preparation on weight loss over 10 days and 45 days and weight maintenance over 12 months.


Gastric emptying was observed using ultrasound scanning in seven healthy volunteers following YGD and placebo capsules taken with 420 mL apple juice. Body weight was observed before and after 10 days of treatment with three YGD capsules or three placebo capsules before each meal for 10 days in 44 healthy overweight patients attending a primary health care centre. Forty-seven healthy overweight patients entered a double-blind placebo-controlled parallel trial of three capsules of YGD capsules before each main meal for 45 days compared with three placebo capsules on body weight. Body weight was monitored in 22 patients who continued active (YGD capsules) treatment for 12 months.


The herb preparation YGD was followed by a prolonged gastric emptying time of 58 +/- 15 min compared to 38 +/- 7.6 min after placebo (P = 0.025). Body weight reductions were 0.8 +/- 0.05 kg after YGD capsules compared to 0.3 +/- 0.03 kg after placebo capsules over 10 days, and 5.1 +/- 0.5 kg after PGD capsules compared to 0.3 +/- 0.08 kg after placebo over 45 days. Active treatment with YGD capsules resulted in weight maintenance of the group (73 kg at the beginning and 72.5 kg at the end of 12 months).


The herbal preparation, YGD capsules, significantly delayed gastric emptying, reduced the time to perceived gastric fullness and induced significant weight loss over 45 days in overweight patients treated in a primary health care context. Maintenance treatment given in an uncontrolled context resulted in no further weight loss, nor weight regain in the group as a whole. The herbal preparation is thus shown to be one that significantly modulates gastric emptying. Further clinical studies with dietetic monitoring of energy intake, dietary quality, satiety ratings, body weight and body composition are now indicated, and examination of the active principles contained in the three herbal components may prove rewarding.

PMID: 11424516
Int J Food Sci Nutr. 2011 Oct 19. [Epub ahead of print]


Allied Health Sciences Degree Programme, Faculty of Medicine, University of Ruhuna , Galle , Sri Lanka.


Cinnamon is the oldest spice and has been used by several cultural practices for centuries. In addition to its culinary uses, cinnamon possesses a rising popularity due to many stated health benefits. Out of the large number of cinnamon species available, Cinnamomum aromaticum (Cassia) and Cinnamomum zeylanicum have been subjected to extensive research. Available in vitro and in vivo evidence indicates that cinnamon may have multiple health benefits, mainly in relation to hypoglycaemic activity. Furthermore, the therapeutic potential of cinnamon is stated also to be brought about by its anti-microbial, anti-fungal, antiviral, antioxidant, anti-tumour, blood pressure-lowering, cholesterol and lipid-lowering and gastro-protective properties. This article provides a summary of the scientific literature available on both C. aromaticum and C. zeylanicum. All studies reported here have used cinnamon bark and its products. Although almost all the animal models have indicated a pronounced anti-diabetic activity of both cinnamon species, conflicting results were observed with regard to the few clinical trials available. Therefore, the necessity of evaluating the effects of cinnamon for its therapeutic potential through well-defined and adequately powered randomized controlled clinical trials is emphasized, before recommendations are made for the use of cinnamon as an effective treatment for humans.

PMID: 22007625
PLoS One. 2012;7(1):e30164. Epub 2012 Jan 12.


Center for Human Nutrition, School of Medicine, University of Colorado Denver, Denver, Colorado, United States of America.


In lean humans, increasing dietary fat intake causes an increase in whole-body fat oxidation and changes in genes that regulate fat oxidation in skeletal muscle, but whether this occurs in obese humans is not known. We compared changes in whole-body fat oxidation and markers of muscle oxidative capacity differ in lean (LN) and obese (OB) adults exposed to a 2-day high-fat (HF) diet. Ten LN (BMI = 22.5±2.5 kg/m², age = 30±8 yrs) and nine OB (BMI = 35.9±4.93 kg/m², 38±5 yrs, Mean±SD) were studied in a room calorimeter for 24hr while consuming isocaloric low-fat (LF, 20% of energy) and HF (50% of energy) diets. A muscle biopsy was obtained the next morning following an overnight fast. 24h respiratory quotient (RQ) did not significantly differ between groups (LN: 0.91±0.01; OB: 0.92±0.01) during LF, and similarly decreased during HF in LN (0.86±0.01) and OB (0.85±0.01). The expression of pyruvate dehydrogenase kinase 4 (PDK4) and the fatty acid transporter CD36 increased in both LN and OB during HF. No other changes in mRNA or protein were observed. However, in both LN and OB, the amounts of acetylated peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ coactivator-1-α (PGC1-α) significantly decreased and phosphorylated 5-AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) significantly increased. In response to an isoenergetic increase in dietary fat, whole-body fat oxidation similarly increases in LN and OB, in association with a shift towards oxidative metabolism in skeletal muscle, suggesting that the ability to adapt to an acute increase in dietary fat is not impaired in obesity.

J Physiol Anthropol. 2009 Sep;28(5):239-45.


Department of Food and Nutrition, Aichi Gakusen College.


Tryptophan (Trp) intake at breakfast promotes morning-typed circadian typology and higher sleep quality in Japanese children aged 0-6 yrs (Harada et al., 2007). This effect may be accelerated by morning exposure to sunlight, which has not yet been tested. This study aimed to investigate such an effect in Japanese children. In May, 2006, an integrated questionnaire was administered to 0-6-year-old children attending one of 12 kindergartens. 906 parents answered the questionnaire for their children and themselves (response rate: 67.4%). The integrated questionnaire included the revised version for children of the Morningness-Eveningness (M-E) Questionnaire and questions on sleep, nutritional balance, mental health, and sunlight exposure. Analysis was made on data from 744 children aged 2-6 (385 girls, 359 boys) whose average M-E score was 20.6+/-3.46. Children who had breakfast at regular times tended to be more morning-typed and were less frequently angry (p=0.001) and depressed (p=0.007). Children who had nutritionally well-balanced breakfasts tended to be more morning-typed (p<0.001), and woke up and fell asleep at earlier times (p<0.001). Children with higher protein intake tended to have higher M-E scores (p<0.001) and earlier bedtime and wake-up time (p=0.003). Children exposed to sunlight for 30-60 min on their way to kindergarten showed more distinctive shifting-effects to morning-type with protein intake than those exposed to sunlight for less than 20 min (p=0.006). A well-balanced breakfast might be a strong zeitgeber for circadian oscillators of children, and the morning-type driving effect of protein intake could be accelerated by morning exposure to sunlight.

PMID: 19823006


  1. Reblogged this on Inspiredweightloss.

  2. Thank you! I hope it helps someone who did the heavy cream and isn’t losing weight.

  3. I am sure that it will help others especially if they are on a mission to lose weight!

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