You may be eating right and exercising but you still can't get rid of that unsightly fat in those trouble areas. Maybe you've seen by advertisements promising to help you burn more fat with thermogenic weight-loss supplements and wonder if this could be the answer to your problems. While these supplements may have the ability to boost your metabolism and speed up weight loss, they could contain harmful ingredients and interfere with your natural metabolic process.
Thermogenesis occurs when your body produces more heat. When your body produces more heat, your metabolism speeds up and you burn more calories. This can happen when you eat certain foods that cause your body to burn more calories simply by having to digest and absorb them. This also takes place when you exercise, which increases your core temperature, causing your body to burn calories. Some weight loss supplements also contain ingredients that produce this same reaction in your body.
Thermogenic supplements are used for weight loss because they are designed to trigger thermogenesis in your body. The manufacturers of these supplements claim that they burn fat, suppress your appetite and even give you more energy. They usually contain herbal stimulants like caffeine, Garcinia cambogia, bitter orange, pyruvate and other substances which are used to initiate the thermic process. Previously, many thermogenic products also contained ephedra, but it was banned by the FDA due to its negative health effects. However, some brands manufactured outside of the United States may still contain ephedra, so it is important to check the ingredients if you choose to use these products.
Thermogenic Supplements and Metabolism
Although people may experience weight loss when taking thermogenic supplements, some doctors, like Andrew Weil, M.D., advise against these products because of the effect they have on the body and metabolism. They can impact your natural metabolic response to food by affecting your body's ability to process fat and deal with excess calories, according to WeightTraining.com. This can cause you to put back on lost weight and even gain more weight after you have taken them for a while or once you stop taking them. Other possible side effects include increased heart rate, addiction to certain ingredients and eventual immunity to the fat-burning process triggered by the supplement.
Boosting Thermogenics Naturally
There are ways to naturally initiate thermogenesis in your body without the risk of weight loss supplements. Since this process simply relies on elevating your internal temperature to burn calories, you can engage in regular exercise and get the same results. In addition, including strength training in your workout routine develops more muscle, which takes more calories to maintain than fat so you burn more calories even when at rest. Eating certain foods can also help heat up your body to burn more calories. These include high-protein foods; broccoli and other cruciferous greens; spices like cayenne, mustard and ginger; and whole foods rather than processed foods. Eating at regular intervals throughout the day also prevents your metabolism from slowing down, and drinking plenty of water will keep your liver burning fat efficiently.
Always consult your doctor before beginning any new diet or weight loss routine or before taking any dietary supplements. He can advise you on the best practices to achieve your weight loss goals and evaluate the ingredients of any weight loss supplements to make sure they will not interfere with any other medications you are taking or complicate any existing health problems. Some thermogenic fat burners can cause heart and kidney complications and possibly cause overdose even when taken as directed; so make sure you report any health changes to your doctor if you do choose to use these products.
Based in the Los Angeles area, Brandi Junious specializes in health-related articles. Her writing reflects her expertise in fitness and education. Junious is the author of children's book "A World Without Trees" and her work has appeared on Modern Mom, The Nest Woman, Chron Healthy Living and at Loseweightandlivehealthy.blogspot.com. Junious holds a bachelor's degree in psychology from the University of Southern California and a master's degree in Education.