The most common causes of being overweight are poor diet and/or eating habits and a lack of exercise. Other factors include boredom, diabetes, emotional tension, glandular malfunctions, hypoglycemia and the simple love of food.

Those extra pounds can put you at a greater risk of health problems, including certain cancers, gallbladder disease, gallstones, heart disease, hemorrhoids, high blood pressure, stroke, and kidney and liver problems.

Excessive weight also contributes to infertility, osteoporosis, varicose veins and PMS symptoms. Many natural substances can help people lose weight; however, a healthy diet and exercise are the mainstays of a successful weight loss program.

There are three basic approaches to weight management using nutritional supplements. The first is the use of diuretics to reduce water retention. The second is the use of lipotropic vitamins, which have the ability to reduce cholesterol and fat. Third is the use of natural appetite suppressants.

There are no magic potions that achieve and maintain weight loss, but here are some supplemental remedies that maybe helpful.

5-HTP increases serotonin levels, which reduces hunger and promotes weight loss. Take 100 milligrams twenty minutes before each meal.

Choline and inositol helps the body burn fat. Take as directed on label.

Chromium picolinate increases fat metabolism and reduces sugar cravings by stabilizing the metabolism of sugars. Take 200 to 600 micrograms daily.

Coenzyme Q10 promotes weight loss. Take 100 to 300 milligrams daily.

DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone) prevents an enzyme that is involved in fat production. Take as directed on label.

Fenugreek is useful for dissolving fat within the liver.

GLA (gamma-linolenic acid) helps to control the metabolism of fats. Taking at least 250 IU daily helps to control appetite.

Glucomannan is good for diabetes and obesity because it helps get rid of fat. It expands to sixty times its own weight, thereby helping to curb the appetite. It has been recognized for normalizing blood sugar and is good for people with hypoglycemia. Always be sure to drink a large glass of water when taking it in capsule or pill form, as they can become lodged in the throat and expand there, causing breathing problems. Take 2 to 3 capsules with a large glass of water thirty minutes before meals.

HCA (hydroxycitric acid) helps to prevent the body from turning carbohydrate calories into fat. It is an ingredient in various diet products. Take as directed on label.

Lecithin breaks down fat so it can be removed from the body. In the form of granules take 1 tablespoon 3 times daily, before meals. In capsule form take 1200 milligrams 3 times daily, before meals.

L-Carnitine has the ability to break up fat deposits and aids in weight loss. Take 500 milligrams daily.

L-Glutamine lessens sugar cravings. Take as directed on label.

L-Methionine assists in the break down of fat. Take as directed on label.

L-Phenylalanine is an appetite suppressant that tells the brain you are not hungry. Take as directed on label, on an empty stomach. CAUTION: Do not take this supplement if you are pregnant or nursing, or suffer from panic attacks, high blood pressure, diabetes or PKU.

Maitake aids in weight loss. Take as directed on label.

Psyllium reduces fat absorption. Stir 1/2 to 1 teaspoon psyllium powder or husks in 8 ounces of water and drink 2 glasses per day. DO NOT take any medicine or other supplements at the same time.

The herbs alfalfa, corn silk, dandelion, gravel root, horsetail, hydrangea, hyssop, juniper berries, oat straw, parsley, thyme, uva ursi, white ash and yarrow can all be used in the form of tea for their diuretic actions.

Butcher's broom, cardamom, cayenne, cinnamon, ginger, green tea and mustard seed are thermogenic herbs that improve digestion and aid in the metabolism of fat.

Herbal appetite suppressants include guarana, kelp and kola nut.

It is not easy to loss weight and you do not have to battle the bulge alone. Get help from a dietician for help working out a weight loss plan.

Author's Bio: 

Edith Lingenfelter-webmaster of Age-old Herbs shows how "self defense" is natures oldest law on how to prevent your health concerns by means of natural healing herbs with herbal and dietary supplements. Learn how to protect your health by visiting