Fat Burners – Everything You Need to Know About Them
In a world where everybody wants a quick fix, where every marketing ploy is laced with the phrase “burns fat” and certain foods “burn fat”, of course the fitness industry was going to come up with a supplement that supposedly does what it says on the tin.
But does it really?
In order to really understand whether a fat burning supplement is going to be beneficial or just a waste of money, we must first understand how they actually work. Fat burning supplements fall under the bracket of a thermogenic, meaning that they increase the body’s overall temperature through the metabolic processes. Thus, increasing heart rate. When the body’s overall temperature increases, caloric expenditure also increases as the body requires more calories in order to regulate temperature. These products will contain caffeine as a primary ingredient as this causes the heart rate to increase along with body temperature, they also typically contain common ingredients such as green tea and black pepper extract, along with a multitude of vitamins which contribute little to the thermogenic effects of the product.
This product sounds familiar doesn’t it?
The components in the typical fat burner are somewhat identical to the ingredient list on most common pre-workout supplements, however they are not as highly dosed in stimulants as the main purpose of this product is different to that of pre-workout. In my opinion there is very little to separate these two products and you would be better off purchasing one as opposed to both, seeing as taking 2 caffeine-based supplements on a daily basis will not be healthy for the heart. Pre workout supplements also contain a variety of other stimulants and focus ingredients that do not come with run of the mill fat burners such as Alpha GPC, however some higher quality products may contain these.
When can these products prove useful?
For the average person looking to drop bodyfat and improve overall body composition, I would not recommend this product as the body will not struggle to get the heart rate into a zone in which fat burning is optimal. When under a well-structured diet and training program that is tailored to you and your needs, there are not many supplements that you will need to take to lose weight, a caloric deficit and correlating expenditure is more than enough to reach your goal. If you think you have all of this and you’re still not losing weight, there is no supplement that is going to help you.
That being said there is a certain demographic that these products may prove beneficial to (however this would apply to the top range products with patented ingredients and clinical dosages), this would be top performing athletes who need to be at exceptionally low body fat levels in order to compete e.g. bodybuilders, fighters trying to make weight etc. These athletes have reached a point of cardiovascular endurance to which they struggle to raise their heart rate over a certain level, thus making it hard to increase body temperature and lose further body fat, this is a prime example of the body’s capability to adapt to foreign stimulus. The supplementation of a product such as a fat burner may allow them to increase their heart rate further in order to thus reduce bodyfat to a certain level.
How to take this product
Typically taken prior to any substantial amount of cardiovascular activity as taking this at parts of the day when one is sedentary is not healthy for the heart.
For anyone who believes they may benefit from a fat burning product or supplement, here are some of my personal suggestions and ones that I know are of high quality:
In conclusion I do not feel that this product is essential or at all worth purchasing for the average individual simply looking to lose some body fat, its suitability falls into a small minority of people who will understand how to get the best out of it. The best way to attain healthy and consistent fat loss will always be a caloric deficit and a structured training program.
By Tireoghain O’Neill