When it comes to fat loss, there seems to be no shortage of products on the market, each boasting awesome results. This is a great selling point in the realm of supplements, especially when trying to maximize weight loss outcomes, but how do we know which ingredients in supplements have a proven track record of aiding in fat loss? Lauding the ‘magical power’ of fat burning is one thing, but proving exactly how this power works within our bodies is completely another. Take into consideration then as well, that a budget might have to be instituted and what we have to work with falls monetarily, in the mid-range, how do we go about figuring out which active ingredients to look for in the most economical, safe and effective nutritional aides?
For starters, fat loss via supplements can occur in a few ways; through the prevention of the absorption of fat, through raising the body’s fat burning capabilities and by helping decrease appetite. Two primary ways in which fat burners aim to promote fat loss is by;
Thermogenesis – This occurs when metabolism is accelerated, to increase heat and burn calories. This in turn can bring about the metabolism of fat. Thermogenesis is dependent on a number of factors such as temperature, diet and exercise.
Lipolysis – This is the breakdown of fats stored within cells called triglycerides. When they are broken down, they become glycerol and fatty acids, of which the fatty acids are now able to move around the blood stream. It is important to consume a low carbohydrate diet when attempting to lose fat via lipolysis as the glucose that results from the breakdown of carbohydrates stimulate insulin production. This is good in and of itself as insulin acts to clear glucose from the blood stream. When there is excess glucose in the blood, however, the insulin has minimal if any effect on clearing out the glucose and these molecules then head straight for the free-floating fat cells which aren’t being used for energy.
Having at least a basic understanding of the mechanisms behind fat loss can stand you in good stead when choosing nutritional supplements for this part of your health and fitness regimen. If your budget has a little wiggle room, this is fantastic as it allows you to explore more of the fat burning ingredient options in more supplements, just do a little reading and research to familiarize yourself with what these fat-loss promoting ingredients are and how they work. In fact, if your budget is somewhere between low and high, the following can start you off on your journey to building up your supplement store at home and get you on the road to your best self with your health and wellness at the forefront of your goals.
Caffeine – This supplement has long been purported to enhance lipolysis by raising resting metabolic rate (RMR). This is done by increasing the amount of circulating epinephrine and free fatty acids in the blood. Green tea extract and caffeine combined, studies have shown, dramatically increase the resting metabolic rate (RMR) which stimulates greater calorie burn for fat loss, so this supplement is definitely one to consider, especially with budget constraints!
Glucomannan – This is a dietary fiber derived from the root of the konjac plant. It has long been used as a medicine, but is also now utilized in different forms such as powder, capsules and tablets for helping with constipation, certain stomach conditions and, wouldn’t you know it, weight loss. Because glucomannan is able to absorb up to 50 times it’s own weight in water (and given that it has a high molecular weight), it is considered one of the most viscous dietary fibers and is thus ingested in smaller doses. Glucomannan seems to work by displacing the energy of other nutrients and bringing about a sense of fullness when it absorbs water and expands in the gastrointestinal tract. It appears that this fiber also has a positive safety profile, which is a definite plus as far as supplements go. Maybe keep this in mind when shopping around for your fat burners.
Garcinia Cambogia – While commonly used as a flavoring agent in Asian cuisine, it’s large content of hydroxycitric acid (HCA) is believed to help with weight loss. This organic acid, studies have shown, can enhance satiety, mitigate symptoms of insulin resistance, oxidative stress and inflammation. Additionally, it has been purported to assist in reduced energy intake. When it comes to super fruit supplements this one may just hold the key to fat loss, though caution must be exercised (as with any supplement), when taking them. If your research points you in this direction, ask your health care provider or local supplement store any and all questions you have on garcinia!
Yohimbe (Yohimbine HCL) – Derived from the bark of an African evergreen tree it has long been used in traditional African medicine. It has more recently, however, been marketed for it’s fat burning abilities particularly as studies have shown that is a most suitable fat loss strategy, even if it isn’t notable for it’s muscle building capabilities. When it comes to releasing adrenaline, yohimbine seems to have it’s skills honed in this area. Do seek medical advice if you suffer from anxiety or other related disorders though, as this ingredient, while an excellent fat burner, can exacerbate symptoms. If you otherwise don’t experience any panic related disorders, then check out the ingredients of your fat burners, and ensure the inclusion of this age-old herbal remedy on the list; it may indeed, bode your fat loss journey well.
Bitter Orange (Citrus aurantium L.) – This ingredient is believed to increase both energy expenditure and lipolysis as well as act as a very mild appetite suppressant. This trifecta alone should make it an effective fat burner in and of itself and some studies have shown a possible increase in resting metabolic rate (RMR) as well. While seemingly effective in its role, it does have some side effects and should not be used in combination with other stimulants. Definitely do a little research on bitter orange, seek professional advice and perhaps include this in your supplement stock.
Probiotics – These guys have the unique ability to alter our gut microbiota which in turn alters the way in which we extract nutrients and thus energy from the food we ingest. Subsequently, our energy expenditure will be affected and this could very well be a good thing as far as fat loss goes! The complex interaction between gut flora and human metabolism demonstrates a direct link between microbiota in the digestive tract and overall state of health. If not for it’s potential fat burning capabilities, then at least for general wellness, including probiotics in your supplement regime will up the ante in your fitness plan for sure.
As far as fat burners go, it is of prime importance that you know a little about what ingredients comprise the supplements you might be interested in taking to enhance fat loss results. You don’t want to take something that’s going to increase your appetite as well, nor do you want to find yourself with a supplement that curbs your cravings but really makes it difficult for you to burn calories at all. Finding the right ingredients in supplements, especially if your budget cuts you some slack, will definitely take your nutritional cache to new and greater heights when figuring out your health. There are quality supplements with track records of proven efficacy with the science and studies to back up their fat burning claims, all you have to do is a little research, know your ingredients and ask questions! A budget can be a challenge, but so can health and wellness and we don’t shy away from those! Keep going and work within your financial constraints; it may be tedious but it’ll certainly be rewarding in the long run.