If you could take a magic pill and instantly lose 15 pounds would you?
Of course, you would! Most of us would.
Life would be so much easier if we didn’t actually have to workout and eat healthily.
Walk down any health food store or pharmacy and you’ll see a shelf full of these little “magic” pills. But, the only question remains – do they work?
Commonly called fat burners, these little “magic” pills are over-the-counter drugs or supplements that claim to burn calories by increasing the rate of the body’s metabolism.
Fat burners fall under the nutritional category of thermogenic’s. They are substances, often containing ephedrine, caffeine, and aspirin (although aspirin is rarely used today), designed to help promote lipolysis in the body. It other words, they are designed to break down body fat to be used by the body as energy.
They also stimulate the body’s central nervous system leaving you with the “jitters” after taking one of these pills. You can thank the caffeine for that!
For more information, you can check out my review of best thermogenic fat burning supplements out there!
Just like any nutritional products, there are hundreds of them on the shelf today. Which one do you choose? Do fat burners work? The answer: maybe. Let’s look at the reasons fat burners may or may not work for you.
You Need to Eat a Healthy Diet
Fat burners are nutritional supplements. They are not magic pills like their 6-page spread in Health & Fitness likes you to think. You can’t eat ice cream and cake all day and pop one of these pills expecting to be bikini body ready tomorrow. Sorry to break your heart. That’s just reality. Diet is about 80 percent of the weight-loss battle. It is the one most people struggle with every day.
Fat burners can potentially help you with your weight loss goals, but only if you are following a proper diet with lots of fruits, vegetables, and protein. To truly lose weight, you need to eat slightly fewer calories than you burn off over the course of a day, eat healthy fats, plenty of protein, and lots of fresh, colorful vegetables.
When you feel confident that your diet is on track for your weight loss goals, then you can add in a fat burner to enhance your fat loss. Even then it might not work so use caution.
You Still Need to Exercise
Exercise is an important aspect of your health. Not only can it increase your weight loss, but also exercise enhances your mood, increases your energy, and helps combat heart disease, high blood pressure, and
Unfortunately, many people don’t exercise the correct way for weight loss. Too many of us just hop on a treadmill and walk/run for 3 miles every day. That’s great if you love to run. Of course you might lose a couple of pounds, but eventually, your body plateaus because it adjusts to your exercise routine.
You need to mix it up. Most importantly, you need to focus on strength training. Strength training gives you the biggest bang for your buck when it comes to weight loss because it increases muscle size and in return increases your metabolism.
The Advertising is Fake
Open any magazine today and you’ll see loads of fat burners and weight loss supplements. Look at any ad and you’ll see people claiming that they lost 15 pounds in two weeks. First of all, losing that amount of weight in such a short time is extremely unhealthy and unsafe. Health and fitness professionals recommend losing 0.5-1.5 pounds a week for healthy and safe weight loss.
The truth is most of these featured testimonials and ads are fake. Photos are photoshopped, staged, and worst, completely different people. You need to have realistic expectations. Unless you have been blessed with great genes, consume a healthy diet, and exercise, there is a good chance you’re not going to look like a supermodel. Sorry. That’s just the hard reality of life. No magic pill is going to turn you into Gisele Bundchen.
You Need to Check the Ingredients List!
Surprise! Some fat burners are complete BS. You’re basically buying a sugar pill. Remember Sensa Weight-Loss Program: The Accidental Discovery That's Transforming the Way People Lose Weight? According to its ads, you could eat all your favorite foods without counting calories, deprivation, or carvings just by sprinkling these flavor-enhancing SENSA® Clinical - More Than Just an Ordinary Carb Blocker, Blocks up to 350 Calories Per Meal‡, Dietary Supplement and Superior Appetite Suppressant for Easy and Effective Weight Loss*, (30 Packets) on it. And somehow they magically result in
In January 2014 the Federal Trade Commission fined the company for $26.5 million to settle charges of unfounded weight loss claims. The company claimed that peer-review studies supporting claims of subjects losing over 30 pounds using Sensa were published in Endocrine Society, but no studies were ever reviewed or published by the medical journal.
If you ever looked at the ingredient list of Sensa, you would find it contained silica, tricalcium phosphate, maltodextrin, milk, and soy. Basically a whole lot of nothing. For potential fat burners that work, you need a product that contains the right ingredients.
What You Should Try
If you absolutely want to get that edge and invest in some effective thermogenic supplements that work, check out my top 3 choices for women.
But nothing is going to help if you don’t hit those weights!
Health enthusiast, runner, protein nut. Owen likes to write about protein, particularly alternatve supplementation and supplement comparisons.