Despite a lot of the claims you read, there are no miracle pills or potions that will magically burn fat off your body.
Efficient fat burning involves a total program of high- calorie, nutrient-dense eating, regular and intense aerobics,
and a well-designed weight-training program.
Having said that, however, there are several supplements you can use to tweak your body's fat-burning machinery for
better results. But they should only be used along with proper nutrition and training, not in the place of What follows
is a discussion of these "anti-fat" supplements and how they can enhance a total muscle-building, fat-burning program.
Technically, "lipotropic" refers to any substance that decreases the rate at which fat is stored in liver cells and
accelerates the rate at which fat is dismantled into water, carbon dioxide, and energy. By helping to mobilize fat,
lipotropics make it frilly available for energy, thus assisting fat loss. Quality lipotropic supplements contain several
key nutrients involved in these processes.
The suggested use for lipotropic supplements is one capsule with each meal. To derive maximum benefit from your use of
lipotropics you must use these supplements in conjunction with a sound diet and exercise program. I also feel that you
should be taking a good multivitamin and mineral supplement. Vitamins and minerals are like spark plugs in the metabolic
engine, providing motivation for each step to operate maxim ally.
Chromium is required for the efficient utilization of carbohydrates and fat for energy. Dietary deficiency of chromium
is very common and exercise increases the excretion of what little amount there is. Two studies with weight lifters showed
that chromium supplementation increased lean body mass and decreased bodyfat compared to a placebo. Since chromium
deficiency is common and its excretion is increased by exercise, it seems prudent for athletes to supplement their diets
with chromium to guarantee their metabolic processes can operate at peak efficiency.
Supplemental creatine monohydrate can be used to increase muscle size and strength. With additional muscle your metabolism
becomes elevated and your body can burn fat more efficiently. That being the case, creatine has an indirect - but powerful
nonetheless - effect on fat burning. Creatine monohydrate builds strength by increasing the intracellular levels of
creatine and creatine phosphate. This allows more rapid production of ATP, which powers muscular contractions. Thus, more
energy is available to the cells, allowing them to work harder.
You need protein to build muscle tissue and carbohydrates to provide energy. Creatine itself is not burned to produce
energy. Rather it acts as an energy buffer to transfer the energy derived from carbohydrate and fat oxidation to ATP. Creatine
is not incorporated into protein. It will, however, indirectly increase the protein mass of muscle overtime by allowing you
to perform more intense workouts. That is, of course. if you are eating enough lean protein and quality calories to support
In hard-training bodybuilders I have observed an increase of four to 14 pounds of lean mass during the first month of using
creatine. I have verified that this weight gain shows up as an increase in lean body mass by doing body composition tests.
Remember that lean mass is a measure of everything in your body that's not fat, including the skeleton, muscles, and water.
It's harder to imagine anybody happier than a bodybuilder who gains 10 pounds of lean mass in one month.
Regarding performance, I've seen athletes experience a five to 15 percent increase in strength on their maximum lifts, and
an increase of about two reps per set with their working weight. This increase in training intensity allows you to put a
greater load on the muscle, which will indeed increase your gains in muscle protein mass Over time.
Like a lipid, MCT oil is calorie-dense, providing 8.3 calories per gram. But like a carbohydrate, MCT oil is absorbed directly
into the bloodstream and used immediately for energy. Because of its rapid conversion to energy, MCT oil has less of a tendency
to turn into bodyfat compared to conventional fats.
You can use MCT oil for two major reasons - to increase calories and as a replacement for carbohydrate fuel when you're trying
to lose bodyfat. MCT oil is a source of quality calories you can add to your diet for greater energy. Start using it in this
manner and see if you have any changes in your energy level.
As a replacement for carbs, MCT oil lets you use a variation of the low-carb fat-loss strategy, but without the corresponding
loss of energy. Eating fewer carbs alters your insulin-to-glucagon ratio. When carbs are in short supply the hormone glucagon
is released. It stimulates the body to start burning fat for energy. By supplementing with MCT oil you have a source of energy
to carry you through the low-carb times.
Begin taking half a tablespoon of MCT oil with each meal for three days. Mix MCT oil directly into your food. Do not take MCT
oil on an empty stomach. Increase your consumption to one tablespoon per meal for an additional three days. I recommend
increasing in increments of half a tablespoon per meal for three-day periods until you reach your maximum usage level (which is
based on your caloric intake). These recommendations are effective for most people. You may have to adjust them, however, if you
experience abdominal cramping or diarrhea, which is caused by MCT oil's rapid absorption. If you experience these symptoms, cut
back for a while until your tolerance improves.
Branched-chain Amino Acids (BCAAs)
"Branched-chain" amino acids (leucine, isoleucine and valine) are so-called because their side chain contains a branched carbon
structure. There are two special things about BCAAs: they are among the most abundant amino acids in muscle proteins and they
are heavily catabolized (broken down) during exercise. These two reasons, plus the fact the body cannot make its own BCAAs,
increase the need for them by bodybuilders - especially bodybuilders concerned about achieving maximum muscle mass.
The reason BCAA's can be termed anti-fat supplements is because they are selectively taken up by muscles, so they will add to
muscle mass not fat mass. They provide essential building blocks which are used to build muscle protein, thus having an anabolic
effect. What's more, they block the breakdown of existing muscle tissue during intense exercise.
To see a noticeable effect from BCAA supplementation you need to take a fair amount of this supplement. At least ten grams a day
is recommended, and 20 would not be too much. I suggest three capsules with each of six meals per day. Take BCAAs with meals to