Do you want to turn your body into a fat-burning machine? If you want to shed pounds and burn fat, obvious choices include calorie-cutting, and low-carb. But why not for the best amino acids for fat loss?
In recent years branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) have been trending as a pre/post-workout supplement. However, there have also been some studies about the use of amino acid supplements for weight loss. There haven’t been tons of studies. So it’s important to take a closer look to separate fact from fiction.
The idea of using the building blocks of protein to burn fat instead of building muscle might seem odd. Calorie-counting makes you burn more calories than you consume. Low-carb diets like Keto cause your body to get energy from fat instead of calories. The situation is different with the amino acids. Some seem to affect how fast the body processes fat. However, the main goal is to control appetite. This is due to the connection between amino acids and the brain’s “neurotransmitters.” The signal-senders are linked to many of the body’s processes including eating, sleeping, and mood.
How Does Fat Loss Work?
People often refer to weight-loss and fat-loss as two different things. If you want to burn fat, you have to burn calories as well. Different ways can include different approaches like calorie-reduction, low-carb, and appetite suppression.
The basic process of burning fat boils down to something called a caloric deficit. In other words, you can lose weight if your net carbs become lower than your current net carbs. We get calories from food and beverages. Health experts believe, about three-quarters of weight loss is linked to diet, and one-quarter is linked to exercise.
If you lose enough weight, you will also burn fat. That is because each pound of fat is equal to 3,500 calories. The rate that you lose fat varies, it is based on factors like how much and what you eat, how intense your workouts are, etc. If you want to maximize fat loss, then eat less and exercise more.
A trending method for weight/fat loss is low-carb, high-fat diets. Fun Fact: The first low-carb diet named the Stillman Diet (1967) was low-carb and high-protein.
The goal of modern low-carb diets is to force the body into a state of ketosis. The body’s first choice for energy is carbs. However, when you go low-carb, the body starts to get energy by breaking down fat and producing more ketones in the liver. It can cause a fat loss because you turn the body into a fat-burning machine. However, many health experts do not recommend going super-low-carb for more than a month or two.
Another approach to weight loss is to boost your intake of certain amino acids. That’s due to their connection between the gut and brain. It’s a lot easier to put down your fork when you know your tummy is full. When that happens, it’s easier to shed pounds and burn fat.
Best Amino Acids for Fat Loss
Lysine And Arginine
A recent study showed that these two amino acids quickly send signals to the appetite-controlling parts of the brain’s hypothalamus.
A recent study from the University of Warwick (England) showed that the amino acids lysine and arginine, in particular, helped to send signals to the brain that reduced feelings of hunger which could help fight obesity.
Branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) include three aminos: Leucine, Isoleucine, and Valine. They’ve been trending for pre/post-workout supplements. However, could they help with fat loss? In 2017 researchers published a study related to obese mice and BCAAs, and the results surprised them.
BCAAs are related to various body functions including organ function, insulin/glucose regulation, and metabolism. In the study, the mice ate the Standard American Diet (SAD) which was also low-BCAA.
The mice were eating a high-fat/sugar diet yet actually lost weight. In this case, it seemed to be linked to the low-BCAA diet. It reversed obesity and improved blood sugar control. The fat lost body weight and fat until they achieved a normal weight.
Other studies show that increasing BCAA intake might help athletes burn fat and mostly belly fat. In one study by the College of Charleston (USA), researchers discovered that BCAA supplements helped athletes experience 2.5x greater fat loss versus those who drank a sports drink. They also lost 50% more fat versus the group that consumed a whey protein drink.
Top Foods and Drinks for Fat Loss
Apple Cider Vinegar
This folk remedy is used for just about everything from skin rashes to type-2 diabetes. Some animal studies show that the acetic acid/mother in a healthy drink seems to boost fat burning and reduce belly fat. Also, one study showed that 2 TBSP of daily ACV helped obese men lose about 1% of body fat.
Omega-3 known as MCT in this oil is known to help with fat loss. The reason is the body processes MCTs differently than other fatty acids. The body processes them faster so they can be used for immediate energy.
They’re not just for YouTube challenges! They contain one powerful antioxidant (capsaicin) that might help through appetite control, which could prevent over-eating. It could also help to burn calories/fat. One study showed that the antioxidant helped to reverse a slower metabolism caused by a low-calorie diet.
Coffee and Tea
Fun Fact: Tea is the most popular beverage in the world. Both of these drinks are high in natural caffeine and antioxidants. They can help to speed up your metabolism, which can drop weight and burn fat. One study showed that drinking black coffee one hour before a workout produces up to 2x more fat loss versus the non-coffee group.
Greek Yogurt (full fat)
Greek yogurt is thicker than regular yogurt. This food can provide many fat-loss benefits. They include boosting fat loss, feeling full after meals/snacks, and even preserving muscles throughout weight loss.
Yes, it seems that eating fatty fish can help you to burn fat. It’s about the healthy omega-3s found in tuna, trout, salmon, herring, sardines, etc. One study showed that fish oil helped people lose an average of 0.5 kg (1.1 lbs.). Another benefit is that protein boosts metabolism more versus carbs/fat, which can help with the best amino acids for fat loss.