Guaran√É¬° is an evergreen vine found growing in the wild basins of the Amazon rain forests. The indigenous people of the Amazon rain forest have used crushed guaran√É¬° seed as a beverage and a medicine. Guaran√É¬° was used to treat diarrhea, decrease fatigue, reduce hunger, and to help arthritis.
Guarana's active components are guaranine and the alkaloids theobromine and theophylline. Guaranine is almost identical in chemical structure to caffeine and has many of the same effects. Guaran√É¬° also contains tannins, which may account for its traditional use to treat diarrhea.
Guaran√É¬°, in combination with Asian ginseng and Siberian ginseng, is often used by athletes in an attempt to produce an energizing effect. However, there are not any clinical studies conclusively substantiating the benefit of guaran√É¬° for this purpose.Guarana for Weight Loss
Guaran√É¬° contains a substance similar to caffeine called guaranine. Guaranine stimulates the central nervous system, increases metabolism, and has a mild diuretic effect. It has been suggested that in combination with other herbs, guarana (guaranine) may be effective in helping to promote weight loss. This effect is probably due to an appetite suppressing mechanism, an increase in calorie burning, or both.Possible Side Effects
Guaranine, a chemical compound found in guaran√É¬°, produces many of the same effects as caffeine. Individuals with conditions that may be complicated by high caffeine intake (including insomnia, depression, and pregnancy) should consult with a physician before adding guaran√É¬° to their diet.Dosage
Guaran√É¬° products that provide up to 400 milligrams of caffeine per day are considered safe.