Obesity is a global public health issue. Although the etiology of this global epidemic is multifactorial, most sufferers would be delighted to find a relatively effortless way to lose weight. Herbal "weight loss pills" can fit the bill. The authors systematically review the scientific evidence concerning various weight loss agents that are available over the counter or in food stores. The review provides a starting point to make informed choices among nutraceutical agents promoted for weight loss, as well as advice for incorporating healthy alternatives in the diet.