You have probably heard of fat burners. Those magical little pills that are supposed to melt fat off your body faster than ice cream from a cone on a hot summer day. They are not exactly magic, but they can be a great supplement. They can, in fact, aid in helping burn fat, but they will not entirely replace a healthy diet and a solid exercise plan.
But when added as a component of a solid plan to lose weight, fat burners can play a very beneficial role. Here is an overview of what fat burners can and cannot do and how they work.
What are fat burners?
Fat burners are kind of the scope on a hunting rifle except in this case you are hunting for fat cells. Taking this scenario a step further, your diet is your rifle, and your exercise regimen is your ammunition. Fat burners help you aim better and target fat much more effectively.
In more technical terms as explained in the journal Obesity Reviews, fat burners are “nutrition supplements that are claimed to acutely increase fat metabolism or energy expenditure, impair fat absorption, increase weight loss, increase fat oxidation during exercise, or somehow cause long-term adaptations that promote fat metabolism.”
How do fat burners work?
Fat burners are made with ingredients that are meant to stimulate hormonal reactions in the body. As this occurs, your body will begin to break down fat and use it as a fuel source.
Most fat burners contain caffeine, which is an active participant in helping you lose weight. Caffeine boosts your metabolism, helping the body use fat for fuel. Caffeine also provides the energy that is beneficial during exercise and other calorie-burning activities. After you consume caffeine, it accelerates the breakdown of fatty acids stored in adipose tissue (in layman’s terms – belly fat). After these fatty acids are broken down, they enter the bloodstream, and your body uses them to create energy.
Word of caution: Do not think consuming caffeine or using fat burners containing caffeine is a magic bullet for weight loss. Fat burners do a number of things well. They help boost energy, curb your appetite, promote fat use as energy, and increase your metabolism. HOWEVER – none of that can overcome a diet of fatty junk food.
Cut the junk food from your diet and focus on healthy fruits and vegetables. Once you have established healthy eating habits, then introduce fat burners as a supplement. Set reasonable expectations. Fat burners will not magically burn off 10 pounds per week. Remember this. The recommended rate of fat loss is 1-3 pounds per week. You do not want to lose weight too quickly as you are also losing lean muscle in the process.