In theory, thermogenic dietary supplements can be utilized as appetite suppressants and fat burners; however, they can also be deliberately used to simply regulate body temperature. Because thermogenic supplements are mostly stimulants, the activity of the nervous system is also increased and quickened.
This causes some key bodily functions like the pulse rate and the heart rate to speed up. The more the body exerts effort, even internally, the more it craves calories, thus effectively burning the stored fat.
Thermogenic supplements swiftly burn the fat stored in the body by speeding up the metabolic process which causes an increase in the amount of heat that you produce. The fat-burning process happens even without exercise as the stimulants are able to affect internal bodily functions without physical exertion.
The burning of stored fat can also be manipulated to fit the body’s needs, especially when improving muscle definition. Thermogenics can be classified as either exercise-based or diet-induced. Exercise thermogenics happens when one physically exerts himself, moving the body to consume and burn more fatty cells.
The diet-induced process, on the other hand, is when the body itself creates heat in order to be able to utilize fat as a form of energy.
The term thermogenics is derived from the way by which these dietary supplements act inside the body. They burn stored calories at an accelerated pace, thus increasing the temperature in the body. The process by which this happens is called oxidative phosphorylation. The thermogenic stimulants increase the metabolism on disposed tissues where the fats are stored in the body.
Thermogenics do not literally burn fat per se. What these dietary supplements do is simply raise the metabolic functions of the fat deposits so that the body will be able to effectively and easily convert them into energy. Add this to the heightened activity of the nervous system, and the body will already desire as much additional energy sources as possible, thus burning the stored fat.
While bodybuilders and athletes use thermogenics to maintain a balance between body fat and muscle in their body, the rest of the population utilize them as a way to start losing weight. An ordinary person who wants to lose weight can take thermogenics to fasten up the fat-burning process especially during the first few stages, in order to condition the body properly.
It is important to note, though, that the use of thermogenic supplements can be quite hazardous for the health when they are taken excessively, and without the proper guidance of a medical expert. These stimulants increase the activity of the nervous system, causing side effects such as extreme nausea and anxiety.
The intake of these supplements should be regulated in such a way that the body is not adjusted properly. Moreover, the body can easily absorb thermogenic supplements, so it is best to be taken at intervals.
Types of Thermogenic Supplements
- The first thermogenic supplement is Ephedrine or Ephedra.
It is especially found as a compound of a Chinese plant herb, Ma Huang. Ephedrine is a stimulant for the central nervous system. It induces increased heart rate and a rise in blood pressure in those who take them.
The increase in the functions of the nervous system causes the body to burn more of its stored calories. However, in 2004, the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) started banning products that contain Ephedra because of its drastic side effects which include hypertension and even heart attack.
While Ephedra may no longer be available in the US market, its milder synthetic form, Pseudoephedrine, is more recommended. Pseudoephedrine, while milder, is still an affective thermogenic drug.
- Caffeine products and herbs which contain caffeine are also proven thermogenic products.
These products which include coffee, cocoa, and tea are generally considered as safe, as they do not cause unwanted and dangerous side effects. Although caffeine is lethal in unmonitored doses, moderate intake can be very beneficial during the weight loss process.
- Another thermogenic product is bitter orange.
Bitter orange contains a compound named Synephrine. The compound has been compared to Ephedrine because of its similarity in a number of side effects. Those who have taken bitter orange have proven that it makes the body crave less food. While there are similarities between Synephrine and Ephedrine, the US FDA has not issued any ban on Synephrine.
Fucoxanthin, on the other hand, is a carotenoid compound that has thermogenic capabilities with no stimulant content. It is effective as a weight loss supplement as it contains no stimulants. Fucoxanthin can be an alternative to synephrine and ephedrine.
There are, of course, some dangers to taking these thermogenic substances. While they do help hasten the weight loss process by speeding up internal functions of the body, they can also cause complications that could possibly ensue if these substances are taken without proper guidance.
Thermogenic dietary supplements are not advised by the US FDA, especially when they are not prescribed by qualified medical experts. People who have very weak immune systems are likely to be weakened by these substances.
Thermogenic products have been associated with increased heart rate, palpitations, heightened anxiety, insomnia, and an increase in blood pressure. People who have heart conditions can be at risk when they take thermogenic substances without proper prescription. Thermogenic substances can impair not only the cardiovascular system when they are taken in large doses, they can also permanently damage the immune system, especially since these products disrupt the normal processes of the body.
Thermogenics are effective tools for losing weight, but they must be taken moderately, with the guidance of physicians. While it may be desirable to lose weight swiftly, you don’t want to risk your whole being for it. Overall, before you take thermogenic products, you should first consult your doctor in order to find out the proper amount you should take.