Your metabolism is all of the chemical processes that convert carbohydrates, proteins, and fats from your food into the energy that your cells need to function. A crucial part of building muscle mass is replenishing energy stores, and a robust and healthy metabolism will help you do just that.
Your metabolic rate is the amount of time it takes your body to process and use energy — in the form calories — from the food you eat. Your basal rate (BMR) is the amount of energy, or calories, your body needs to maintain basic functions when you’re resting. It’s how many calories you would need to survive if you never moved.
Beyond that, the number of calories you should consume in a day depends on genetics, age, gender, weight, height (or body mass), your muscle to fat ratio, your pre-existing diet, and certain medical conditions.
How much you move, both in general and when exercising also reflects the total number of calories you burn. You may also burn calories digesting food, a process called diet-induced thermogenesis. This said supplements that boost your metabolism do so in different ways.
Here Are The 10 Different Supplements that Can Boost Your Metabolism (And Muscle Growth).
Research has confirmed that caffeine can enhance thermogenesis.
According to a review article published in Obesity Reviews, six different studies have found that people burn more calories when they take a minimum daily dose of 270 milligrams (mg) of caffeine.
Caffeine stimulates the central nervous system which increases heart rate and breathing rate, preparing your body for peak performance. What’s more… studies show that taking up to 400mg of caffeine supplements 30 minutes before a workout can improve stamina and endurance. Though, these benefits can only be found from caffeine supplements, not cups of coffee. It is thought that coffee contains additional chemicals that reduce caffeine’s ability to boost performance.
Furthermore, caffeine is thought to offer fat burning properties — from the simple fact caffeine can boost the metabolic rate by 3% to 11%, and increase fat burning by as much as 29% in lean adults.
Capsaicin is the chemical that puts the hot in jalapeños. There’s some evidence it may help promote weight loss. A review of 20 research studies, published in Appetite, found that capsaicin can increase the number of calories you burn by approximately 50 calories a day. Those calories can add up over time, contributing to long-term weight loss.
Further investigations have found that capsaicin intake can lead to a reduced desire to eat fatty foods, sweet foods, salty foods and the general desire to eat. More studies have shown capsaicin can decrease concentrations of a hormone called ghrelin, which is known to make us feel hungry. It can also lead to an increase in GLP-1, a hormone that makes us feel full.
It was also found that the provision of 135mg of capsaicin per day led to a significant increase in fat burning in comparison to the group who received a placebo. The researchers also found that the capsaicin led to an increase in metabolic rate by an average of 120 calories per day.
L-carnitine is a substance that helps your body turn fat into energy. While your body produces it in your liver and kidneys, you can also find it in meat, dairy products, nuts, and vegetables.
L-carnitine is also popularly taken for improving body composition. Although there is a lack of research in young adults. Investigations with older individuals have shown that l-carnitine can result in an increase in muscle mass and a loss of fat.
Chromium is a mineral that your body uses in small amounts. Chromium picolinate is widely used by people with impaired glucose tolerance or who are diabetic. Chromium is thought to help regulate blood sugar by impacting how sensitive the cells are to insulin. Through being respondent to insulin, sugar can effectively leave the blood and enter the cells where it can be used to create energy, or stored for later use.
It is thought that chromium positively impacts certain neurotransmitters in the brain that regulate appetite and food cravings. This hypothesis has been reinforced by a study in overweight women who reported intense cravings for sugary and starchy foods. This investigation showed that eight weeks of chromium supplementation resulted in a 25% decrease in food intake thanks to the reduction in hunger and cravings.
These impressive findings could have a plethora of health benefits if they led to sustained weight-loss.
Conjugated linoleic acid (CLA)
Conjugated linoleic acid, or CLA, has been a popular dietary supplement in bodybuilding and fitness industry for years.
This is due to the effect it has on the molecular pathways that regulate fat burning. Now, this supplement is now receiving more attention from the general public who are often using it alongside a healthy, calorie controlled diet and a structured exercise plan to promote favorable changes to body composition.
Investigations that have administrated CLA on a daily basis have reported both gains in muscle mass, and also the preservation of muscle during a weight-loss program. One study published in Obesity in 2008 found that 3g of CLA, paired with 3g of Omega 3 fish oils was effective at increasing muscle mass by 2.4% over a 12 week period in obese young men.
This impressive increase was also untainted by negative changes to body fat levels or blood readings concerning metabolic health. These results were independent of exercise or dietary changes, which makes them all the more notable.
The polyphenol epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) in green tea makes it a scientifically proven metabolic booster – ideal to help strip fat and show off that well-honed tone. Drinking green tea remains the most popular source, and it is thought that around five cups of tea per day are needed for beneficial health effects.
Studies have found that green tea can help to improve weight loss in participants who were overweight and moderately obese. It is thought that the combination of catechins and caffeine help boost metabolism and burn more calories. Green tea has also been shown to increase fat burning during exercise; men taking green tea extract burned 17% more fat when exercising, compared to those taking the placebo.
Resveratrol is a substance found in the skin of red grapes, mulberries, Japanese knotweed, and peanuts.
Although it is a compound most commonly attributed to red wine. Studies suggest that grapevines produce resveratrol in response to a microbial attack; the more potential pathogens that the plant is exposed to, the more resveratrol is produced. Historically the consumption of alcohol has been viewed as at odds with a healthy lifestyle, so supplements of resveratrol have become ever popular.
A study published in the FASEB Journal, suggests resveratrol may prevent the adverse effects of a sedentary lifestyle. The study simulated the weightlessness of spaceflight giving one group resveratrol and the other none. The resveratrol group did not develop insulin resistance (a major underlying hormonal imbalance linked to belly fat) or a loss of bone mineral density, unlike their counterparts. The results indicate that resveratrol may prevent the consequences of sedentary behaviors during periods of inactivity, whether from illness, schedule changes, injuries or even travel.
Resveratrol can work for you both in and out of the gym by preventing a decline in metabolic health, and tissue like muscle and bone, when your levels of activity are at a minimum.
Without sufficient selenium, your body can’t use metabolism-controlling hormones from your thyroid. The good news is that if you take it in the form of supplements, you’ll build stores back up in no time.
Selenium has a crucial role in controlling the effects of thyroid hormone on fat metabolism. A study published in the July 15, 1996 issue of The Journal of Clinical Investigation, stresses the importance of nutrition in thyroid hormone function. The researchers report that the enzyme responsible for activating thyroid hormone in the brain burns brown fat, a heat-producing type of fat tissue. More generally, the Thyroid hormone, which is produced in the thyroid gland using iodine, influences several essential body functions including fat metabolism in adults.
Medium-Chain Triglycerides (MCT)
Medium-chain triglycerides, or MCTs, are fats that behave like carbohydrates in the body that metabolize quickly. Studies have shown they not only aid weight control but are especially useful if you want to up your endurance. Scientists attribute the increased energy from consumption of MCTs to the rapid formation of ketone bodies. MCTs are therefore an excellent choice for anyone who has increased energy needs, as following major surgery, during normal or stunted growth, to enhance athletic performance, and to counteract the decreased energy production that results from aging, as well as serving as an alternative energy source for people on high-protein, low-carbohydrate diets.
Branched-Chain Amino Acids (BCAAS)
If you want to train harder and tone up quicker, pop branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs). They aid muscle repair and raise blood flow to improve your performance.
When your body depletes its stored glycogen, it needs BCAAs as a secondary fuel source. The human body encounters this situation when cutting calories and increasing physical activity. Even though the result of an intense diet and exercise is optimized physical health, it does, in a way, tear down the body to get there. Scientists refer to this state as a “catabolic crisis,” as your body breaks down muscle in a desperate attempt to preserve fat stores.
BCAAs are responsible for stimulating protein synthesis, improving each cell’s ability to perform its protein synthesis — providing support for the process of muscle regeneration after exercise.
Another vital function of BCAAs is their ability to slow down the rate of protein breakdown, decreasing overall protein loss. These two benefits halt the “catabolic crisis,” and directly support the preservation of your hard-earned muscle mass.
It’s important to remember that all supplements should be taken as prescribed on the labels and it’s important to remind you as well, that there is always an inherent risk to taking a supplement. So before taking any supplements, you should consult your doctor or inform yourself through a nutritionist to ensure you can take any kind of supplement or if there’s even a need for you to do so.
Let me know of any success (or horror) stories you’ve experienced with any fitness or diet supplements by leaving a comment below.