Everyone has heard of fat burners, those “magic” pills that make fat burn off your body like ice cream would melt on a warm summer day. Well, sorry to be a killjoy, but even the best fat burners are just supplements, and you can’t expect them to magically shave off tons of weight.
Even though fat burning workout supplements can provide an extra boost in burning fat, they aren’t a replacement for a healthy diet and exercise plan. In other words, fat burners can definitely play a role as a part of a complete and healthy plan to drop weight, just not the way you think they do. That being said, here’s what fat loss supplements can, and can’t do for you.
What Do Fat Burning Supplements Do?
You can think of fat burners like the scope on your hunting rifle, but instead of hunting prey, you’re hunting fat cells. In this particular metaphor, your diet is your hunting rifle, and exercise is the ammo. The fat burners can help you aim better and target fat cells more efficiently. But without the diet that is your rifle, and the exercise that is the bullets in the chamber, the scope is useful just for looking at your prey from far away, not actually killing it.
So what are fat burning workout supplements? The term fat burner is used to describe supplements that acutely increase energy expenditure or fat metabolism, increase weight loss, impair fat absorption, increase fat oxidation during workouts or cause adaptations that promote fat metabolism.
Some of the main ingredients in fat burning supplements are designed to stimulate hormonal reactions in your body that help kickstart the break down fat down and using it as a fuel source. The main ingredient in the majority of these supplements is caffeine, which basically helps you lose weight by increasing your metabolism and assisting the body in using fat for fuel. It also provides energy for exercise. Inside the body, caffeine increase the breakdown of fatty acids found in the adipose tissue (belly fat). Once these fatty acids are broken down, they enter the bloodstream and are burned by the body to create energy.
Do Fat Burning Supplements Work?
Yes, fat burners work, as long as you have a reasonable understanding of what them working means. Some people think that just by using fat burners they’re going to burn a lot of fat on a daily basis. That’s obviously not going to happen. Set reasonable expectations. These supplements will definitely enhance the rate at which you burn fat, but you won’t be dropping 5kg a week just because you’re using them.
A safe rate of fat loss is 1-2kg a week. You might be able to push it to 3-4kg a week, but that’s not a sustainable weight loss rate, and eventually, you’ll hit a plateau. If you’re dropping weight too quickly, no matter whether it’s with a fat burning supplement or not, you can also be losing muscle mass.
For that reason, set your weight-loss goals from month to month, or week to week. When you meet those goals, you’ll stay more focused and motivated and keep seeing results. Sure, you won’t get the desired results some weeks, but that’s to be expected. However, with the help of fat burners, your fat loss will stay on track in the long run.
Additionally, it’s recommended that you cycle your fat burners. Even the best thermogenic fat burning supplements won’t keep providing results forever. This is due to the fact that your body can build a tolerance to it, and you’ll need to increase the dosages, which isn’t recommended. That being said, start at lower doses and work your way up to the maximum recommended dose found on the label.
Moreover, you should make muscle a priority. What this means is that you shouldn’t just take a thermogenic supplement and hop on the nearest cardio machine. You should follow a training program that minimises muscle loss while maximising fat loss. Muscles are your friend when sustainable weight loss is the goal. It gives your body shape while burning calories, and it allows you to stay active and feel great while doing it.
Are Fat Burners Safe?
As long as you keep track of your stimulant intake and a reasonable approach to your overall nutrition, fat burning supplements are a completely safe way to help you reach your weight goals. There are a few rules that you should keep in mind to ensure it stays that way.
First and foremost, don’t be on a strict diet forever. Instead, have a concise timeframe to get the best results. Don’t go too low on calories – you only want a slight caloric deficit. Fewer is not always better – after all, you need to feed your muscles with essential nutrients and your body needs something to keep it running throughout the day. And of course, you have to be careful with the stimulants. Don’t overdrink coffee, as it can negatively impact your sleep cycle, and you need quality rest to help your body rejuvenate from the workouts.