This diet relies on a supplement called Release. According to the company’s FAQ, Release is made of seven natural plant-based ingredients and three minerals: (6)
- Banaba leaf extract
- Rhodiola rosea
- Berberine extract
- Salacia extract
- Gardenia extract
- Apple extract
It is touted as a weight loss supplement that is supposed to prevent insulin levels from rising. Limited evidence shows that banaba leaf extract may be used for lowering blood glucose levels in people with diabetes. (7) Rhodiola rosea is a flowering plant that may affect cells that store fat, particularly in the midsection, per a study in the May 2015 issue of Molecules. (8)
Still, this preliminary research is not solid evidence that this supplement — or any weight loss supplement with these ingredients — is a silver bullet. In fact, according to Cassetty, “there has never been a supplement that materially and meaningfully boosts your weight loss for any sustainable or long-term period.”
What’s more, there are potential safety issues with the Release supplement. “I’m a bit concerned about the supplement,” says Emmaline Rasmussen, RDN, the owner of Sound Nutrition in Chicago. She suggests that anyone interested consult a physician and registered dietitian before trying the Golo diet, especially those who are managing diabetes. “Diabetes may be regulated with medication, and it can be potentially dangerous to start a diet that claims to impact insulin levels without medical supervision,” she says.
While the company claims that the supplement is safe to take with medications, at the very least you’ll want to ask your healthcare team if your meds should be adjusted. (6) You may also be taking medication for high blood pressure, a condition that this diet claims to help improve. In that case, your doctor should keep tabs on any progress and assess if your prescription needs to be adjusted in any way.