Fat burners. The magic little pill that gets you shredded right?
Only if you know how to use them!
Fact is, Fat Burners work, but they aren’t as magical as some might make them out to be. They’ll definitely help you lose fat and look great, but it requires more effort than just swallowing a pill.
This guide is to help you know the facts about fat burners, what to look for and what to avoid, and how to make them work for you.
What are fat burners?
Fat burners are a fitness supplement designed to increase metabolism, increase energy, and reduce appetite and by doing so increase the number of calories you burn. This over time can translate into weight loss.
Other ingredients in fat burners can signal certain hormones like epinephrine to break down fats and make them ready for the body to use as a fuel source.
What ingredients are in fat burners?
Let’s take a closer look at some of the most common ingredients in fat burners that have been backed up by research to aid in fat loss.
Short for Conjugated Linoleic Acid, CLA is actually a polyunsaturated fat commonly found in meat sources, especially grass fed cows. CLA is one of the most studied substances in the world and many researchers have found it to have fat loss properties.
- Green Tea
Green tea has long been known for its fat burning qualities, especially when paired with exercise. It also is an excellent source of cancer-fighting antioxidants, making green tea an amazing health food.
- Black Pepper
Recent research has found that black pepper may reduce the development of new fat cells, helping individuals stay lean.
- L-Carnitine Tartrate
An amino acid, L-Carnitine Tartrate has been found to help the body use fat as a source of energy as well as possibly increasing exercise performance.
- Green Coffee Bean
Green coffee bean extract is one of the most popular weight loss supplements and for good reason. It has some promising research behind it plus, like green tea, it’s a source of antioxidants. Chlorogenic acid is the substance found in green coffee bean that gives its weight loss effects, so be sure the coffee extract is 50% Chlorogenic acid.
Thermodiamine comes from an exotic fruit found in China and may increase the body’s thermal temperature to help burn more calories. It also acts as an appetite suppressant.
- Garcinia Cambogia Extract
This weight loss supplement, found in a tropical fruit, has become increasingly popular in the past year. Don’t get too excited though. Most studies have only found it has a moderate effect on weight loss.
Caffeine acts as a stimulant and increases epinephrine and norepinephrine in the body. These “flight or fight” hormones also signal the breakdown of fatty acids and release into the bloodstream, making them available as fuel sources. Caffeine also acts as a mild appetite suppressant.
How do fat burners burn fat?
Fat burners through their stimulant like effect cause the release of epinephrine and norepinephrine, hormones that signal the mobilization of fat from fat stores to the blood stream.
Once fat enters the bloodstream however it doesn’t magically disappear. There has to be a use for it to be burned as energy by the body. This is why to get the most out of a fat burner, it’s important to be working out regularly. If you’re not working out and creating an energy need, the fat that gets released into the bloodstream will just be stored as fat again.
Fat burners can also help you lose weight by either providing a natural appetite suppressant and increasing thermogenesis in the body. Both of these effects help you create a calorie deficit which technically translates into weight loss.
Are fat burners safe for your health?
Unless you have any sensitivities to stimulants like caffeine or are allergic to any of the ingredients (which is unlikely) most fat burners are safe, but there are a few important things to keep in mind.
- Only use it as the directions say.
Taking more that the suggested use will not give you more or faster results. Always read the instructions and take it as directed! Most fat burners are taken once in the morning, and maybe again before a workout or at lunch in the afternoon.
- Don’t take it forever.
Fat burners were not meant to be taken long term. Since most of them have stimulant-like effects, your body will adapt making them less effective. Plus, it’s not a bad idea to give your body a break from stimulants now and then.
- If you are already consuming lots of caffeine, you might want to cut back somewhere.
Again, most fat burners have caffeine or other stimulants so if you are a regular coffee drinker or take pre-workout daily, make sure you aren’t getting too much caffeine at once or your total during the day. It’s not recommended you take more than 400mg of caffeine daily.
- Do your research, know what to avoid.
Although most ingredients in fat burners are natural and safe, there are definitely ingredients to look for and avoid: phenolphthalein, sibutramine, Clenbuterol, Emagrece Sim are a few of those dangerous ingredients.
So, do fat burners work?
Yes, fat burners work if you work.
If you really want to get the most out of your fat burner, pair it with a healthy diet, regular exercise, and the correct supplementation.
Fat burners are available as a supplement to what you are already doing. If you aren’t eating right or exercising, don’t expect a fat burner to do much, it might give you an energy buzz but that’s about it.
The best times to take a fat burner is in the morning before breakfast, and possibly again in the afternoon before lunch or a workout. Remember, it’s important to pair fat burners with regular physical activity so your body actually uses the fat that’s being released into the bloodstream as a source of energy.