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Raspberry Ketone

What is it?

Raspberry ketone is a chemical from red raspberries, as well as kiwifruit, peaches, grapes, apples, other berries, vegetables such as rhubarb, and the bark of yew, maple, and pine trees.

People take raspberry ketone by mouth for weight loss. It became popular for weight loss after it was mentioned on the Dr. Oz television show during the segment called "Raspberry ketone: Miracle fat-burner in a bottle" in February 2012.

People apply raspberry ketone to the skin for hair loss.

Raspberry ketone is also used in foods, cosmetics, and other manufacturing as a fragrance or flavoring agent.

How effective is it?

Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database rates effectiveness based on scientific evidence according to the following scale: Effective, Likely Effective, Possibly Effective, Possibly Ineffective, Likely Ineffective, Ineffective, and Insufficient Evidence to Rate.

The effectiveness ratings for RASPBERRY KETONE are as follows:

Insufficient evidence to rate effectiveness for...

  • Hair loss (alopecia areata). Early research shows that applying a raspberry ketone solution to the scalp might increase hair growth in people with hair loss.
  • Male pattern baldness (androgenic alopecia). Early research shows that applying a raspberry ketone solution to the scalp might increase hair growth in people with male pattern baldness
  • Obesity. Early research suggests that taking raspberry ketone plus vitamin C might decrease weight and body fat in healthy people. Other research suggests that taking a specific product (Prograde Metabolism) containing raspberry ketone (Razberi K, Integrity Nutraceuticals) and other ingredients including caffeine twice daily for 8 weeks reduces body weight by 2%, fat mass by 7.8%, waist circumference by 2%, and hip circumference by 1.7%. The effects of taking raspberry ketone alone are not clear.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate raspberry ketone for these uses.

How does it work?

Raspberry ketone is a chemical from red raspberries that is thought to help for weight loss. Some research in animals or in test tubes shows that raspberry ketone might increase some measures of metabolism. It might also affect a hormone in the body called adiponectin. Adiponectin can increase the rate at which the body burns fat and reduce appetite. However, it is important to keep in mind that there is no reliable scientific evidence that raspberry ketone improves weight loss when taken by people.

Are there safety concerns?

Raspberry ketone is POSSIBLY SAFE when taken by mouth appropriately as part of a product containing other ingredients in the short-term. Doses of 1000 mg of a specific formulation (Prograde Metabolism), which contains raspberry ketone (Razberi K, Integrity Nutraceuticals) and other ingredients, including caffeine, has been used safely twice daily for 8 weeks.

There isn't enough reliable information available to know if taking raspberry ketone alone is safe. There are some concerns about the safety of raspberry ketone because it is chemically related to a stimulant called synephrine. Therefore, it is possible that raspberry ketone might cause feelings of jitteriness, increase blood pressure, or rapid heartbeat. In one report, someone who took raspberry ketone described feelings of being shaky and a pounding heart beat (palpitations).

Special precautions & warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: There is not enough reliable information about the safety of taking raspberry ketone if you are pregnant or breast feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

Diabetes: Raspberry ketone might lower blood sugar levels. In theory, raspberry ketone might make blood sugar drop too low in people already taking medications for diabetes.

Are there interactions with medications?

Moderate
Be cautious with this combination.
Medications for diabetes (Antidiabetes drugs)
Raspberry ketone might decrease blood sugar. Diabetes medications are also used to lower blood sugar. Taking raspberry ketone along with diabetes medications might cause your blood sugar to get too low. Monitor your blood sugar closely. The dose of your diabetes medication might need to be changed.

Some medications used for diabetes include glimepiride (Amaryl), glyburide (Diabeta, Glynase PresTab, Micronase), insulin, metformin (Glumetza, Fortamet, Glucophage, Riomet), pioglitazone (Actos), rosiglitazone (Avandia), and others.
Warfarin (Coumadin)
Warfarin (Coumadin) is used to thin the blood and prevent blood clots. There has been one report of a person taking warfarin (Coumadin) who also took raspberry ketone. In this person warfarin (Coumadin) did not work as well after raspberry ketone was taken. The dose of warfarin (Coumadin) had to be increased in order to maintain the effect of warfarin (Coumadin) and prevent blood clots. If you take warfarin (Coumadin), talk with your health provider before taking raspberry ketone.

Are there interactions with herbs and supplements?

Herbs and supplements that might lower blood sugar
Raspberry ketone might lower blood sugar levels. Taking it along with other herbs and supplements that might lower blood sugar could lower blood sugar too much in some people. Some herbs and supplements that might lower blood sugar include alpha-lipoic acid, bitter melon, chromium, devil's claw, fenugreek, garlic, guar gum, horse chestnut, Panax ginseng, psyllium, Siberian ginseng, and others.

Are there interactions with foods?

There are no known interactions with foods.

What dose is used?

The appropriate dose of raspberry ketone depends on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for raspberry ketone. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.

Other names

4-(4-Hydroxyphenyl) butan-2-one, Cetona de Frambuesa, Cétone de Framboise, Raspberry Ketones, Red Raspberry Ketone, RK.

Methodology

To learn more about how this article was written, please see the Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database methodology.

References

  1. Ushiki, M., Ikemoto, T., and Sato, Y. Anti-obese activities of raspberry ketone. Aroma Research 2002;3:361.
  2. Sporstol, S. and Scheline, R. R. The metabolism of 4-(4-hydroxyphenyl)butan-2-one (raspberry ketone) in rats, guinea-pigs and rabbits. Xenobiotica 1982;12:249-257. View abstract.
  3. Lin, C. H., Ding, H. Y., Kuo, S. Y., Chin, L. W., Wu, J. Y., and Chang, T. S. Evaluation of in Vitro and in Vivo Depigmenting Activity of Raspberry Ketone from Rheum officinale. Int.J Mol.Sci. 2011;12:4819-4835. View abstract.
  4. Koeduka, T., Watanabe, B., Suzuki, S., Hiratake, J., Mano, J., and Yazaki, K. Characterization of raspberry ketone/zingerone synthase, catalyzing the alpha, beta-hydrogenation of phenylbutenones in raspberry fruits. Biochem.Biophys.Res Commun. 8-19-2011;412:104-108. View abstract.
  5. Jeong, J. B. and Jeong, H. J. Rheosmin, a naturally occurring phenolic compound inhibits LPS-induced iNOS and COX-2 expression in RAW264.7 cells by blocking NF-kappaB activation pathway. Food Chem.Toxicol. 2010;48(8-9):2148-2153. View abstract.
  6. Feron, G., Mauvais, G., Martin, F., Semon, E., and Blin-Perrin, C. Microbial production of 4-hydroxybenzylidene acetone, the direct precursor of raspberry ketone. Lett.Appl.Microbiol. 2007;45:29-35. View abstract.
  7. Lopez, H. L., Ziegenfuss, T. N., Hofheins, J. E., Habowski, S. M., Arent, S. M., Weir, J. P., and Ferrando, A. A. Eight weeks of supplementation with a multi-ingredient weight loss product enhances body composition, reduces hip and waist girth, and increases energy levels in overweight men and women. J Int Soc Sports Nutr 2013;10:22. View abstract.
  8. Wang L, Meng X, Zhang F. Raspberry ketone protects rats fed high-fat diets against nonalcoholic steatohepatitis. J Med Food 2012;15:495-503. View abstract.
  9. Ushiki M, Ikemoto T, Sato Y. Anti-obese activities of raspberry ketone. Aroma Research 2002;3:361.
  10. Adverse Event Report. Raspberry Ketone. Natural MedWatch, September 18, 2011.
  11. Adverse Event Report. Raspberry Ketone. Natural MedWatch, April 27, 2012.
  12. Beekwilder J, van der Meer IM, Sibbesen O, et al. Microbial production of natural raspberry ketone. Biotechnol J 2007;2:1270-9. View abstract.
  13. Park KS. Raspberry ketone increases both lipolysis and fatty acid oxidation in 3T3-L1 adipocytes. Planta Med 2010;76:1654-8. View abstract.
  14. Harada N, Okajima K, Narimatsu N, et al. Effect of topical application of raspberry ketone on dermal production of insulin-like growth factor-I in mice and on hair growth and skin elasticity in humans. Growth Horm IGF Res 2008;18:335-44. View abstract.
  15. Ogawa Y, Akamatsu M, Hotta Y, et al. Effect of essential oils, such as raspberry ketone and its derivatives, on antiandrogenic activity based on in vitro reporter gene assay. Bioorg Med Chem Lett 2010;20:2111-4. View abstract.
  16. Morimoto C, Satoh Y, Hara M, et al. Anti-obese action of raspberry ketone. Life Sci 2005;77:194-204. . View abstract.
Last reviewed - 03/07/2016