March 26, 2021 10 min read
Fat burners are a category of supplement that seems too good to be true. Burning fat is notorious for being one of the more hotly debated topics in fitness. Some exercises promise to blast fat off of your hips, and others promise to delete your fat off of the face of the planet.
A little biology and proven methods will show you that you really only need a couple of things to shake those pesky pounds. Fat burners aren’t a shortcut. You can’t pop one of these in the morning and wake up the next day ten pounds lighter.
What they do is take advantage of a handful of common ingredients to suppress hunger and help your natural processes along, it’s up to you to put in the work to get the most out of a good fat burner. If you’re ready to learn how fat burners encourage weight loss then we’re about to get to the heart of the matter.
Fat cells aren’t a moral failing, gaining weight isn’t proof that you’re not working hard enough, and wearing down that final layer of fat between you and a six-pack isn’t going to happen overnight. They’re a natural part of your biology. Some folks are just going to have more fat than others, it’s a matter of your metabolism, your physical activity, and your biology.
We aren’t taught about how our bodies create fat cells, and you might have been feeding into that process without realizing it. It’s not just a matter of how much fat is in your diet, or whether you’ve stayed under a magic calorie threshold. Accumulating fat is about the energy in your body, whether you’ve used it, and if your body feels like it needs to hold onto more for later.
All of the food you put into your body is pulled apart by your body and broken down into either nutrients and building blocks your body will use to maintain itself and build muscle, or energy your body will use throughout the day. Glucose and other forms of sugar like carbohydrates are what your body uses as energy, so when your digestive system is done breaking things down and sending them through your blood vessel superhighway your body is left with a few options.
Your muscle fibers are capable of storing some of that energy locally, which you can increase their capacity for through high-intensity exercise as well as high-rep low weight endurance training. You can use the increase in blood sugar as an opportunity to utilize the energy with your daily activities, maybe you’ll take some walks or your job requires a lot of physical activity, or you’re in the gym in the morning blowing through your glucose. If you don’t have the local storage capacity for glucose and you don’t end up using it, then your body doesn’t just flush it out of your system.
Your body wants to care for itself, and energy can be a scarce resource out in the wild. We’ve developed a system to keep ourselves from dropping dead when we don’t have immediate access to food. That’s where our fat cells come from. If you’re taking in more energy than your body uses, then your body converts energy we don’t use into triglycerides and then squirrels them away in fat cells to use later. When we have a need for energy in between meals our body breaks fat cells down to release the triglycerides that were bound up in the fat cells.
You can see here how gaining and losing fat is more about managing energy and your nutrients than anything else. This means there are a few things you can change about your lifestyle to get rid of fat, and what fat burners can do to help you along with that journey.
Now that we know where fat cells come from, we can use that knowledge to get rid of them. Fat cells are hanging around on your body just begging to be used. There are five things you can do to start that process and encourage it along.
Protein is one of the three major nutrients that your body requires, and if you’re going to be exercising more, you’re going to need more of it to build your muscles back up after breaking them down in the gym. Protein is used throughout your body from amino acids in your brain to the structure of basically every organic part of your body.
Protein also suppresses your hunger much more effectively than other nutrients you take into your body. Your body responds to protein by releasing hormones that signal to your brain that you’re satiated, and the sooner your brain feels full the less you’re going to be inclined to eat. That means less excess energy floating around in your body ready to become fat cells. Your body is also designed to reach for fat stores for energy before it starts to break protein down for energy, this means that your fat cells are going to be on the chopping block more often if you eat meals and snacks that are high in protein rather than carbs and fat.
Everyone knows that eating fiber helps you in the bathroom, but what we’re less likely to know is that there are two main types of fiber that we encounter that serve two different purposes.
The fiber we’re most familiar with is insoluble fiber. This fiber doesn’t mix with water, instead, it passes through our digestive system and we use it to bulk up our stool. That bulking helps us pass it in through our guts, and eventually into the toilet.
Soluble fibers, on the other hand, are going to mix with water and serve more functions in the body. Soluble fibers are things like beta-glucan and glucomannan. They mix with water and form a gel-like substance that sits in the stomach and slows down how fast the stomach releases digested food into the gut. That means you’re going to feel more full for longer, which translates to eating less throughout the day, which we know by now leads to more fat burn.
Changing up your diet is going to be the biggest component in the fat burning formula, but you’re still going to have to get up and get moving. You don’t have to totally upend your lifestyle. You can start by going on walks or doing some bodyweight exercises around the house. Being active doesn’t mean joining a gym and lifting weights. The gym is just a place that gathers a lot of the tools we use for fitness, but activity comes in many forms. Find what works for you, and when you hit a plateau ratchet it up. Losing weight and shedding fat is a process, and if you dive in head first you might burn out early and lose your motivation.
Your body loves sugar. It’s what we use for energy after all. Humans of the past had to scrounge around for it, and it’s clearly a valuable resource for our bodies. We don’t have mechanisms for storing protein as readily as we do for storing glucose. This speaks to the value of sugar to our body, we’ll seek it out and hoard it if given the chance.
We don’t live in a world where carbs are hard to come by anymore. You can walk down the hall and grab a sack full of it fried up and covered in salt. If you’re trying to lose fat, then you have to stop flooding the energy supply lines. You can curb cravings with proteins and soluble fibers, it’s hard to feel like you need to graze if your body is sending “I’m satisfied” signals to your brain.
Your body uses sleep as a time to regulate and repair itself. If you’re not getting enough sleep you’re not going to give your body the opportunity to put your protein to good use, you’re going to feel frazzled, and you’re going to tell your body that it needs to be on high alert.
Our brains are wired to pick out threats, and if you’re not getting sleep, then your brain is going to go into survival mode. That means hanging onto resources, which can easily translate to holding onto fat cells for later.
If you make sure you’re managing your stress and getting enough sleep, you’re telling your body it’s okay to use your resources. When you’re asleep you’re also going long periods of time without eating, which is an opportunity for your body to break open those sweet little packets of energy. Sleep is tied to so many of your regular mechanisms, don’t deprive yourself of it, and you’ll be well on the road to a healthy lifestyle.
This all brings us back to fat burners. A good fat burner is going to help you out in a few key ways. What you’re going to look for in a decent fat burner is something that will suppress your hunger, give you the energy you need to hit the gym and promote your general health. That means you’re going to be looking for supplements that are full of vitamins and nutrients that have science backing them up.
A good fat burner acts as a tool in your weight loss belt. You have to meet them halfway if you want them to do anything for you at all. The ingredients in fat burners are there to help you along, not do the work for you. The typical fat burner is going to have some kind of ingredient to kick your metabolism into gear like caffeine, capsaicin, efficiently pepper extract like Bioperine (which comes from black pepper). These are going to help you out when you’re in the gym or adjusting your diet. Because of the increased rate of your metabolism you’re going to start seeing the results of your changes a decent bit earlier than you would if you didn’t go into the weight loss process with a supplement. They’re also going to help you out if you’ve hit a plateau in your weight loss journey. Getting an extra kick from a fat loss supplement will help you blast the final few layers of fat off of your midsection. The beginning of weight loss is much easier than the end, you’re going to have to work harder if you’re already slim and fit, because your body naturally wants to hold onto at least a little fat.
An increased metabolism combined with ingredients your body needs for the process of oxidizing your fat cells is also going to increase the rate you burn fat. When you combine an increased metabolism with a high-protein diet to keep yourself from snacking on foods high in sugars, your body is going to start reaching for the storage space that is your fat cells more readily and efficiently, leading to increased fat burn.
Fat burners also help you burn fat by suppressing your appetite. Again, this is where an ingredient like caffeine will help. One of the many functions of caffeine is appetite suppression. If you’ve ever pulled an all-nighter with a pot of coffee and came out the other side without picking up a single snack, you’ll know this first hand. Everything caffeine does in your body in one way or another leads to a suppressed appetite. Fat burners will also contain water-soluble fibers. As we mentioned earlier, these work by mixing with the water in your stomach and creating a mush that regulates the rate at which your body will release food from your stomach by virtue of taking up additional space. Your body will send out hunger signals less frequently while a water-soluble crossing guard is in there directing traffic.
Fat burners are oftentimes a home for B vitamins. This family of vitamins is going to be found in almost all of your food, but if you’re not carefully monitoring your intake of them, it’s easy to undershoot the amount your body actually needs. B vitamins are one of your body’s most basic building blocks, and they play a part in some of your most important bodily functions. For the purposes of burning fat, B vitamins are going to be fighting in your corner.
B vitamins are important for the production and effective utilization of your red blood cells. This means that when you’re trying to get the most out of your exercise and your muscles are begging you for oxygen and glucose, B vitamins are responsible for ensuring your blood cells are ready to provide.
B vitamins are also integral for the health of your brain cells, this benefit along with the caffeine in your supplements is going to keep you alert and focused for longer. A big part of adjusting your diet when you’re trying to lose weight is keeping up your willpower, and staying awake and alert is going to make that so much easier. When you’re groggy and your brain is hungry, it’s hard to make healthy food choices. This combination of supplementing your regular vitamin intake to promote healthy growth in your body along with beneficial additions like caffeine and pepper extracts is where fat burners shine. They’re a combination of compounds you may be overlooking in your diet and nutrients that will set you up for success. Increasing the rate of your metabolism for a short while will burn about 10 to 20 percent more calories over the course of a day, which adds up, but the real power of fat burners is taking advantage of the interactions happening inside of an active body making the changes needed to melt away fat.
If you’re looking for a shortcut, then you’re going to be disappointed, but if you’re looking for a partner to cheer you on while you put in the work, then treat yourself to a nice fat burner and get started on a new routine.
Fat burners are never going to just melt fat off of your body while you lie dormant. Nothing does that, and if it promises to then it’s lying to you. Burning fat is a process that requires healthy habits and close examination of your diet and exercise habits.
Losing fat is a confidence booster, and it’s pretty much required if you want to show off your muscle mass. It’s a task that seems daunting at first, but an understanding of your body, how hunger works, and what you can do to sate yourself successfully makes losing fat a cakewalk.
Fat burners are there to help you achieve your goals as long as you’re putting in the effort. Many of the ingredients are susceptible to tolerance so you won’t be able to use them as a long term crutch, but they’ll be there to give you a boost at the start of your fat-burning endeavors and help you settle into those good habits that you’ll need to form for long term success.