Trimspa Weight Loss Supplement Review

Anna Nicole Smith
Ralph Notaro/Getty Images 

Anna Nicole Smith was the face of Trimspa after trying the diet pills in 2003 and attributing her weight loss to them. The Anna Nicole Smith Trimspa commercials and television appearances showing a much slimmer Smith immediately turned Trimspa into the latest diet pill craze.

The original Trimspa formula contained the stimulant herb ephedra, but the product was reformulated into an ephedra-free version after concerns about the safety of ephedra (ephedra is now banned in the United States).

The original company producing the TrimSpa product, Goen Technologies, filed for bankruptcy in 2008. A new TrimSpa X32 pill was then marketed by new owners.

Trimspa Ingredients and Dosage

Anna Nicole Smith reportedly took six pills a day, which according to the label is the maximum recommended dose of Trimspa. The recommended amount was four pills a day. A 70-capsule package sold for $29.95.

But Smith took more than just the diet pills. She also told the press that she took a "colon cleanser" laxative that kept her, "on the pot all the time," and modified her diet, admitting that it wasn't just the Trimspa diet pills that made her lose weight. She died of a drug overdose in 2007.

Trimspa X32 no longer individually lists the ingredients. There's no way of knowing how much of each ingredient is in a single Trimspa capsule. Trimspa used to list each ingredient separately, but no longer do so.

Now the label merely indicates that there are 75 micrograms of chromium and 622.5 milligrams of "X32 proprietary blend" containing glucomannan, cocoa extract, green tea extract (which is 40 percent caffeine), Hoodia gordonii, glucosamine HCL, citrus naringin, and vanadium. Companies do this to protect their formula, but it makes it impossible to properly evaluate it. They do note that each serving of 4 capsules contains 50 milligrams of caffeine.

Although Trimspa no longer lists ingredients and their amounts individually, previously, each pill contained 125 mg of green tea extract. The total daily intake of four pills a day would provide 500 milligrams of green tea extract and 200 mg of caffeine, which is roughly equivalent to two 8-ounce cups of coffee. The cocoa extract can also be stimulating.

Possible Adverse Effects

Trimspa contains Hoodia gordonii. Hoodia is a plant native to South Africa. Hoodia has a long history of use as an appetite suppressant by the San indigenous peoples of South Africa. Although it is a tremendously popular diet pill ingredient, there are some concerns about adverse effects and whether it's even possible to obtain pure versus fake hoodia in commercial products.

Trimspa side effects may include anxiety and insomnia. Most people's cravings occur in the late afternoon and evening, however taking Trimspa in the late afternoon and evening may be too stimulating (due to the caffeine and other stimulants) for some people and may lead to insomnia, anxiety, palpitations, and restlessness.

Trimspa may also trigger migraines in susceptible people, due to the tyramine content.

Trimspa contains glucomannan, a water-soluble dietary fiber derived from konjac root (Amorphophallus konjac). Like other forms of dietary fiber, glucomannan is considered a bulk-forming laxative and expands in the stomach to reduce appetite by creating a feeling of fullness. Glucomannan, especially in pill form, needs to be taken with plenty of water, or it can cause an obstruction in the esophagus or blockages further down in the digestive tract.

Drug Interactions

Trimspa shouldn't be taken with monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) antidepressant drugs. MAOI drugs include phenelzine (Nardil), tranylcypromine (Parnate), selegiline (Eldepryl), and isocarboxazid (Marplan). These drugs react with foods containing tyramine, such as cocoa, and may lead to elevations in blood pressure, as well as headache, nausea, vomiting, rapid heartbeat, possible confusion, psychotic symptoms, seizures, stroke, and coma when combined with MAOI antidepressants.

Trimspa contains naringin, the compound in grapefruit that can interfere with the metabolism of many common prescription drugs. Naringin can increase blood levels of drugs that are metabolized by the intestinal cytochrome P450 3A4 system, raising the risk of toxicity.

Trimspa shouldn't be taken by people with shellfish allergies as it contains glucosamine. The glucosamine in supplements is typically derived from shellfish shells.

If you're considering using any supplement for weight loss, make sure to talk with your doctor first. Self-treating and avoiding or delaying standard care can have serious consequences.

A Word From Verywell

It's important to keep in mind that supplements which haven't been tested for safety and dietary supplements are largely unregulated. In some cases, the product may deliver doses that differ from the specified amount for each herb. In other cases, the product may be contaminated with other substances such as metals. Also, the safety of supplements in pregnant women, nursing mothers, children, and those with medical conditions or who are taking medications has not been established.

Note: This article was originally published in 2006 and updated in 2019. Supplements may be reformulated periodically. 

Was this page helpful?
Article Sources
Verywell Fit uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. National Institutes of Health Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS). Ephedra.

  2. National Institutes of Health Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS). Dietary Supplements for Weight Loss Fact Sheet for Health Professionals. Updated April 6, 2020.

  3. Hoban C, Byard R, Musgrave I. Hypersensitive adverse drug reactions to glucosamine and chondroitin preparations in Australia between 2000 and 2011. Postgrad Med J. 2020;96(1134):190-193. doi:10.1136/postgradmedj-2019-136957