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Detonate XT is a dietary supplement created by Gaspari nutrition – a supplement company owned and run by renowned bodybuilder and coach Rich Gaspari. Rich was famous for his incredibly lean physique and his success in the bodybuilding world undoubtedly lends a lot of credit to his supplement line. The product itself is based on a combination of 6 common supplementary extracts and is generally safe for human consumption according to a variety of regulating boards – though there are some concerns raised about the inclusion of certain ingredients and their possibility to interact with prescription medications, but this is the case with almost any supplement.
In this article, we’re going to take a look at the various ingredients, their effects and what the science has to say about Gaspari’s detonate XT supplement. Our general focuses will be the safety of the product, effectiveness and the value that it provides compared to other market alternatives, of which there are always hundreds.
Garcinia cambogia might be the most popular weight loss ingredient after caffeine: this fruit extract has been included in an enormous amount of weight loss supplements and has held “miracle” status in the market for a long time. The problem with this, however, is that there is no scientific research to suggest that it actually has the effects that supplement companies claim. The research that does exist is only in animal studies and human studies have shown either inconclusive, inconsistent or simply no effects .
Garcinia has almost no provable effect on the human bodyfat concentration, though there are some small positive effects on the balance of cholesterol in the body: this means that whilst this ingredient is likely to increase blood health, this will not likely improve body composition or result in a great deal of weight loss.
Caffeine is a well-documented weight loss supplement and has been shown to have modest effects on boosting metabolism, increasing focus and athletic performance . This is a common ingredient and it doesn’t seem to give Gaspari’s supplements an edge over the competition – though it is likely to cause some small effects on burning fat. This is in the short-term, however, as caffeine’s half life depends on the dosage and the individual’s physical characteristics, but generally only lasts for 3-5 hours.
Bitter orange extract is very similar to garcinia cambogia in the sense that it is a simple fruit extract, but has some positive effects. As we have mentioned in previous articles, we’re sceptical about the inclusion of both caffeine and synephrine in dietary supplements: an excessive consumption of stimulants has been associated with a variety of health problems affecting the brain and heart . These are relatively low-level stimulants but have still been associated with these negative effects and the choice of a proprietary blend means that we are unable to know exactly how much is contained in the supplement. This makes it hard to gauge the possibility of side effects associated with Detonate XT.
From an effectiveness point of view, there is very little reason to include synephrine in the product: scientific evidence to support the benefits of synephrine are incredibly limited and complicated by funding issues and reporting bias . The only study reporting positive effects was funded by nutratech – a company involved in the sale of synephrine-based supplements – and the study has not been replicated. This means that there is still very little admissible evidence to suggest that synephrine has any positive effects in humans.
Kanna is a herbal extract that has had very little research performed on it – of the existing literature that does pertain to this ingredient, there is nothing to suggest that it will actually assist in weight loss. Whilst there are some positive effects, these are mostly cognitive and we would suggest that this ingredient is more likely to reduce the negative mood and cognitive fatigue associated with a caloric deficit. In this sense, it makes for an excellent dietary aid but not in the sense that it burns fat, but rather because it can reduce the negative symptoms associated with more traditional methods of burning fat (diet and exercise).
This makes kanna a positive influence on the overall wellbeing of customers, but does not contribute to fat loss in any significant way. This raises the question of what the ultimate value of the product will be, especially considering that 3 of the 6 active ingredients have either no effect on fat loss or a modest, short-term effect. The only effective ingredient so far is caffeine and that is included in everything from pre-workouts to fat-burners to instant coffee!
Yohimbe is a tree, of which the bark extract is known as yohimbine (often in Hydrochloride – HCL – form). This product has been popular in bodybuilding circles for a long time and does actually aid in the reduction of fat mass and improvements in sexual health. The problem with this ingredient, however, is the wealth of side effects and the fact that it is yet another stimulant – the 3rd such ingredient!
Yohimbine has been associated with increased symptoms of anxiety, dependence and addiction, hypertension and cortisol levels. These are all associated with their own specific negative health effects, but the combination of these call into question whether the benefits of the product out-weight the detriments. In addition to this, Yohimbine HCL has negative interactions with a variety of prescription medicines and caution should be taken before supplementing YHCL in any form.
This is actually one of our recent favourites for the addition to health supplements, though as with Kanna it is a health supplement and not specifically relevant to losing weight. Velvet bean extract is a great source of L-Dopa, the chemical prior to dopamine, and has been associated with various protective functions such as a reduction in the risks and symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease, regulation of hormones (especially in infertile or otherwise-deficient males) and general improvements in mood.
As with Kanna, we suspect that the inclusion of this ingredient was primarily for the sake of mitigating any negative effects of caloric restriction, but the effects of velvet bean and yohimbine are practicaly synergistic. Yohimbine and Velvet bean are both effective at regulating male sexual health and normalising/improving the hormones that surround this process. This means that it can provide an excellent supplement for those who are low in serum testosterone and is likely to cause some serious positive effects among this population, though considerably less among others.
In response to this, we’d suggest that results among those who take Detonate XT are likely to vary wildly as it can address deficiency. Those who are already within healthy ranges may not see any effect whereas those who are deficient may see remarkable changes. This makes the effectiveness of this product far more dependent on individual differences than many others on the market.
The final ingredient in Detonate is black pepper extract. This is not a particularly glamorous compound and is derived from regular black pepper, as the name suggests. The main use of this ingredient, according to clinical research, is its anti-oxidant abilities and the protective effects it has against cell damage an disease more generally.
Pepperine is the active ingredient and we can only assume that this is what detonate contains – this compound does not have any drastic effects above and beyond this. It has positive, synergistic effects in the absorption and use of other essential nutrients, but it does not appear to aid in fat loss, according to clinical evidence . This appears to be a recurring theme in Gaspari’s ‘Detonate’ and it concerns us that only 2 of the 6 “key” ingredients are actually effective at reducing body fat in any way – especially since these compounds (caffeine and yohimbine) are incredibly easily attainable from a number of market alternatives!
The ingredients included in Gaspari’s detonate XT product confuse us: on the one hand, it is a supplement constituted 50% by stimulants which have known negative effects on health in the long-term. Contrastingly, however, the remaining ingredients suggest that it is more of a health supplement than a dietary aid – perhaps a sexual health supplement at that! The effects of this product seem to be dependent on the testosterone deficiency of the population, but those who are not deficient seem to be unlikely to gain any major benefits, at least according to the clinical evidence.
Given the wide variety of similar, more well-defined supplements on the market, it seems to us that having 2/6 ingredients cause direct, positive effects on fat loss is somewhat unhelpful when 3/6 are psychomotor stimulants and the other 3/6 support general and sexual health. This suggests to us that this product has, like so many others, been mis-marketed. The improve who are originally testosterone-deficient will provide examples of satisfied customers and the improvements in sexual health and sleep quality will improve perceptions of wellbeing and mood de facto.
Overall, we’re a bit confused by this product and concerned with the actual doses of stimulants that it might contain, though equally we are impressed by the health-promoting effects of a number of its ingredients. Our overall score is a 2.5 out of 5, simply to reflect the similar weighting for both the positive and negative effects. Our best advice is to avoid it if you’re struggling for money, or try it if you have the spare cash lying around. Obvious considerations are the medical ones: if you have a heart condition or are consuming prescription medications, this may be best avoided. Contrarily, if you’re suffering with low testosterone or poor sexual health, the risks may be worth the possible rewards!
John has been a fitness enthusiast for over 10 years, starting out while struggling with obesity as a teenager. Over the years he has advised numerous clients on how to transform their physiques and their lives. As a writer on Nutrition Inspector he aims to help others achieve real results by staying clear of the common hype and false claims in the supplement industry! You can contact him via the "About Us" page.