The Wonderful Lychee Fruit Gets Hijacked

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Lychee fruit by SUJA on flickr

Oh, no.  Here we go again.  Lychee fruits may be the new Acai.  This exotic fruit from China and Southeast Asia has became increasingly popular in the last few years — showing up in juices and energy drinks, on restaurant menus and mixed in martinis.  In fact, the Lychee martini craze is still going strong.

2408184831_698b1c08d4Lychee-Lemongrass Martini by Colin Purrington on flickr
lychee salsa on oystersLychee salsa on oysters by Augustus Gloop on flickr 

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Lychee Clafoutis by Appetite for China on flickr

Soon lychee gained status as a superfruit — fueled by a Journal of Nutrition study that found lychees contained the second highest amounts of polyphenols of all the fruits tested.  Lychees were found to have 15% more heart-healthy polyphenols compared to grapes.

It was only a matter of time before the next step in the cycle (following in acai’s myth-riddled path):  a lychee supplement.  That’s exactly what we have now with the launch of  the Lichi Super Fruit Diet.  Here’s a press release from the New York-based company Bainbridge & Knight that saw an opportunity to jump on the lychee bandwagon.  I first learned about these new herbal supplements last week when I heard an ad on the radio here in Chicago and wanted to learn more.  I couldn’t believe what I was hearing — lose weight, boost metabolism, melt fat and detox.  

Here’s a link to LichiSuperFruit.com where you can learn more about the $29.99 supplements that contain lychee fruit extract, acai, resveratrol and green tea extracts.  The products just launched in November and the company plans to support with a national ad campaign, so I’m sure you’ll be hearing more about the Lichi Super Fruit Diet if you haven’t already.lichi super fruitWhy can’t we just enjoy the fruit?  Why must every trendy food get turned into a dietary supplement?  You simply cannot capture all of the benefits of a whole food into a pill.  I don’t care that these supplements contain 17 different ingredients designed to burn fat.  Eat real fruit, drink a cup of  real green tea. 

Products like this always try to align with research so you’ll believe the products are science-based and the claims credible.  Typically there’s some link to research that gets the ball rolling.  But just because a food may be worthy of praise, doesn’t mean a pill filled with an extract of that food has any merit (and there’s likely little actual lychee inside). 

There’s a Japanese company that sells a lychee dietary supplement and it funded a study that seems to be the foundation of the burn fat. claim: lychee extract may trim waist fat.  However, this is not sufficient evidence to me that lychee supplements are worth spending money on. 

I like the idea of a lychee super fruit lifestyle — but only a lifestyle that includes real lychee fruits and other whole fruits and vegetables.  Products like this are only a distraction.  

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14 Comments

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  • http://dishbytrish.com Trish

    Thanks for the info. Didn’t know the lychee is the next buzzed about superfood. The thing I have lychee-containing right now is a killer lychee martini :-)

  • http://www.mrs4life.com Lauren @ MRS

    I agree with Trish, I didn’t know that lychee is as nutritious as described at the same time it burns fat. I was just wondering what is in the Lychee Clafoutis, how it is prepared.

  • Pingback: Trend Alert: Next Generation of Superfruits are Ripening | Nutrition Unplugged

  • TazG

    I go to Argyle and Broadway St here in Chicago for my monthly supply of Asian food its Vietnamese version of China town kind of, I buy my supply of canned fruits including lychees. There is no shortage and I eat them just for the pleasure. But then WLS890 on Don & Roma show they have this advert of this new supplement. I didn’t know until now that it has a fat burning benefit in it. Im Asian myself and we have been eating this for centuries. Well maybe there’s something to it. Most Asians tend to be on the side of normal weight . Youre right. We are trending to a time when everything good and natural will be encapsulated. A grim future to look forward to in my opinion.

  • Nancy

    As much as I am opposed to trendy diets, I disagree that this one is just a fad! I actually use Lichi Super Fruit Diet and I love it. You are absolutely right, nothing can replace the benefits you gain from eating real, whole foods, but there is no harm in supplementing your diet with vitamins to enhance your over-all health. As a health professional, even I find with my schedule that eating healthy and getting all my nutrients from food can be a lot of work and time. Its recommended that you take multi-vitamins to supplement your diet because it is unrealistic that we receive all the nutrients we need for optimal health from our food. I originally decided to take Lichi Diet in early December to see if it aided in losing a few pounds I put on during the holidays. Being an advocate of health an nutrition myself, I found the natural ingredients in the supplement appealing. I visited the Lichi Superfruit website and found it to be a surprisingly helpful resource for diet and exercise tips. They state that there is no “magic pill”, and that proper diet and exercise in combination with supplements that help facilitate weight loss are the way to go. I lost the 10 pounds I was aiming for and have continued to take Lichi because I noticed my complexion was better and I felt like I had more energy. Of course, I still eat healthy whole foods as my regular diet, but I think that taking Lichi has been an added benefit to my overall health.

  • friday

    at least 1 and maybe 2 people commenting here got to have shares in the Lychee superfruit Co . I’m looking at you Nancy.

  • http://ukr-transport.ru/ RobertWG

    ?????? ?? ????? ? ?????????? ???????. ?????????? ??????? ? ???????????????, ???? ? ??????? ?????????? ??????? ?? ukr-transport.ru

  • http://findordos.blogspot.com/ ordosincorporated

    They are carcinogenic

  • http://lichi lynn donker

    they are not carcinogenic fool, real the ingredients….I have been taking them and I took them at first for the sake of nutrition and completion totes, I did loose seven lbs but I go to the gym every day and am very careful about what I eat, the ingredients are all natural as far as I can see and zero side effects so I will continue to take them until I hear different…..

  • Linnea

    I suffered 2 heart attacks a day after I ate 4 of these supplements. The doctors and tests could find no cause. What are the hidden ingredients?

  • Tia

    Where can I purchase these products or where can I purchase the produce.. I am looking to shred my waist line and I did some research on the Oxielite pro and I do not feel safe about that product, can someone please help me thanks.

  • Gale

    In response to Tia,

    Asian grocery stores are probably the most likely to carry Lychee fruits.

  • Robert Hollis

    Wow! I love lychee fruits! This is something I can share with my clients as this is nutritious and at the same time it burns fat. Just awesome! Thanks for this wonderful information!

    Zespa Venus Freeze San Antonio TX

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