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HomeHealthcareEnzymes to lose weight are back in fashion with unknown formulas

Enzymes to lose weight are back in fashion with unknown formulas


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The terms “intramuscular systemic enzyme” and “slimming enzyme” have gained social media such as TikTok in recent days. The group of substances that commercially receives this name for accelerating metabolism, however, is controversial in the medical environment. The SBEM (Brazilian Society of Endocrinology and Metabology) declares that there are no studies that prove the “efficacy, much less the safety” of these injectable procedures.

The supposed “enzymes” used in aesthetic treatments bring vitamins and unspecified substances. In extreme cases, weight loss centers apply thyroid hormones and testosterone to patients to bring about the promised effect.

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Without being identified, the Sheet contacted two aesthetic networks, one in São Paulo and another in Minas Gerais, and asked which substances are most used in the intramuscular enzyme. The two denied the information and said that the combination depends on individual assessment.

One of them defined enzymes as “actives that promote localized fat reduction, weight loss and even mass gain”, using up to five substances. The other called it “multi-substance metabolic accelerators.” Both said they didn’t use hormones.

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Tiktoker Eliza Martins Costa, from Belém (PA), lost a kidney after injecting enzymes into her abdomen. In her report, shared on her profile on social networks, Eliza shows a conversation in which the professional responsible for the procedure says that the combination she used contained silicon, caffeine, green tea, collagen, vitamin B12 and keratin.

“It seems that it was something researched on the internet and they tried to pass it on to me”, comments the victim in the same recording.

By definition, enzymes are proteins that accelerate metabolism, but, according to endocrinologist Lucas do Prado Palmiro, a graduate of Unifesp (Federal University of São Paulo), not everything sold in the aesthetic market with that name is actually enzymatic. .

Palmiro applies enzymes in his office and argues that the compositions are effective, with results that “even seem like magic”, as long as they are well prescribed.

“When we talk about slimming enzymes, there are more than 100 different medications and the range of products is increasing. The problem is actually calling everything an enzyme that comprises a series of vitamins and medications”, he points out.

For the professional, injectable enzymatic treatment, whether local, venal or intramuscular, should only be done by those who know how to prescribe and treat adverse results – that is, specialized doctors. “It’s the same thing to ask if medicine to lose weight is safe. If the doctor knows how to choose the right medicine, in the right dose, for the right person, the result is fantastic”, says Palmiro.

Endocrine handles all your blends and does not recommend ready-made formulas. He recognizes that there is not enough scientific work on the combinations, but states that individually they are substances known to medical practice, with the composition being more subject to the physician’s experience than to the industrialization of the product.

He indicates the treatment for those who need to lose weight, but do not control food compulsiveness only with lifestyle changes, feel sick with capsule intake or want to increase the rate of metabolism.

The biomedical doctor at Kurma Spa in São Paulo, Elis Xavier, graduated from the Sostener Institute, has been working with enzymes for 10 years and also considers the method safe. She prefers to manipulate the blends of “assets” to avoid intercurrences and reactions.

“I set up the prescription, which is attached to my client’s file, and he has everything monitored. If he has a pathology or takes medication for continuous use, I make contact with his doctor and together we align the best treatment”, he says.

Some manipulated enzyme treatment protocols used in clinics contain items such as vitamin B12, sodium deoxycholate liposome, lidocaine, trisilanol, alpha lipoic acid, sunflower oil, caffeine, pentoxifylline, benzopyrone, B1 complex and deoxycholic acid, among others. Substances are combined in different ways and can cause reactions if improperly associated with each other.

Licio Velloso, professor of medicine at Unicamp (State University of Campinas) and a member of the Brazilian Academy of Sciences, says that none of these substances are enzymes by definition.

“There are several chemical products such as salts, liposomes and caffeine. No endocrinology society in the world approves such substances for the treatment of obesity”, says Velloso.

The professor reinforces that doctors should avoid prescribing items not approved by Anvisa (National Health Surveillance Agency). “By prescribing such substances, the professional puts the physical integrity of the patient at risk”, points out Velloso.

Glaucia Carneiro, associate professor of Endocrinology at Unifesp, agrees with SBEM and Velloso. Head of the obesity sector at Unifesp Hospital, Carneiro says that weight loss should not only follow aesthetic purposes and needs to be accompanied by specialists trained to treat obesity.

“There is no intramuscular drug approved either by Anvisa or in the world. Only four drugs are approved today to treat obesity in Brazil, but none of these are for exogenous use, application of enzymes or classified as systemic enzyme”, says the doctor.

Carneiro points out that these medications can only be prescribed by a doctor with a special control prescription, as they can have unwanted side effects. The patient must always receive the term with the associated risks.

The SBEM Obesity Department declares that hormones such as testosterone and thyroid should not be used for weight loss, localized fat elimination or muscle mass increase, only as a treatment for hormone deficiency. The consequences of misuse range from acne to exaggerated masculine characteristics and cardiovascular damage.

Thyroid hormone increases metabolism and reduces fat, but it also causes lean mass decline and can lead to cardiac arrhythmia and sudden death. Enzyme combos with diuretics can lead to dehydration and kidney damage, the institution says.

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