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Around the time I turned 50, something disappointing happened. After a few years of struggling with insomnia and depression — and associated bad habits — I gained a significant amount of weight.
I would catch sight of my silhouette in a shop window and think: 'Who is that?' The turning point was when I struggled to put my socks on as I couldn't see over my stomach.
Until my mid-40s, I had been lucky: a naturally active person, I never had to watch what I ate.
But even though I adopted a healthier diet and boxercise (an intense training class based on boxing) — I even splashed out on a twice-weekly personal trainer — those extra pounds around my stomach just wouldn't go away.
Excitement - Supplement - ShapeLine - People - 'midlifers
So imagine my excitement when I heard about a new probiotic supplement called ShapeLine, which promised to help people — particularly 'midlifers' like me — shed their spare tyre.
The claims were grand. 'ShapeLine is the first probiotic really to offer proven weight loss, alongside other acknowledged health benefits,' says Dr Nigel Plummer, the microbiologist whose firm, Pro-Ven, is behind the product.
Study - Kind - Participants - Reduction - Weight
'In the largest clinical study of its kind, participants saw a reduction of weight, waist circumference and BMI [body mass index] after taking just one capsule a day.'
The best results were found in people over 50. But what makes the results so impressive is that the 440 participants in the study (the results of which were published yesterday in the journal Scientific Reports) did not alter their diet or take up a new exercise regimen. In other words, they swallowed the pill and ate as normal.
Marchesi - Microbiologist - Imperial - College - London
Julian Marchesi, a microbiologist at Imperial College London, who co-authored the study but was not paid by the company, describes the results as: 'A potential game-changer in weight-loss science.'
So, can such a claim really be...
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