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Subject: Re: Fucus vesiculosus and dieting
From: Jane Teas <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Jane Teas <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Wed, 2 Oct 2002 15:13:17 -0400
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Fucus vesiculosus had 276 micrograms of iodine/g (N=3) when we analyzed it at the Harvard reference lab.  The average person needs 150 mcg/day and the maximum tolerated dose for iodine is 1000/day.  So assuming a patch weighs about 1 gram, the most it could deliver would be 276 mcg of iodine.  If iodine is the thyroid stimulator that is increasing metabolism that is proposed to burn more energy, it seems unlikely that a patch would have much impact on thyroid stimulating hormone.  It is more likely that the patch costs money, and is therefore a committment on the part of the person buying it, and once placed, it reminds the person to eat less.  A good placebo with a continuing presence.

Jane Teas, Ph.D.

South Carolina Cancer Center


>>> John Huisman <[log in to unmask]> 10/02/02 03:43PM >>>
Dear All,
Does anyone really believe that these weight-loss patches work? To me the
idea seems totally ludicrous - you can lose weight by strapping on a piece
of Fucus! Come on, surely it's a huge scam. I once received a pamphlet in
the mail espousing the benefits of these patches, and I often use it in
talks to illustrate that not all the claimed values of seaweed are
legitimate. One of the more laughable statements was that 'you can still
eat five meals a day'. Yessir, that's five meals!

Perhaps we in the phycological community should be doing more to debunk
these ridiculous products. I can't believe that someone wants to use them
on their children.

But, as always, I'm prepared to be convinced. If anyone does have any
evidence supporting these claims I would love to hear it.

Cheers,
John Huisman

At 02:25 AM 10/02/2002, you wrote:
>Dear Colleagues,
>The Marine Life Information Network has recieved several enquiries in the last
>few months concerning the use of Fucus vesiculosus extracts in dietry aids and
>weight loss. One enquiry asked if dietry 'patches' that included Fucus
>vesiculosus in its list of ingredients were safe for use in children.
>
>I would like to be able to provide our enquirers with a useful response.
>
>Could anyone shed some light on the subject. Is there a simple source of
>information to which I could point enquirers.
>
>Many thanks
>
>Harvey Tyler-Walters
>Senior Data Researcher,
>Marine Life Information Network for Britain and Ireland,
>Tel: 01752 633336
>Fax: 01752 633102
>Web: http://www.marlin.ac.uk 
>
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John Huisman
Department of Botany, University of Hawaii at Manoa
3190 Maile Way, Honolulu, HI 96822, USA

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