Do Fat Burning Pills Work?

There is no doubt that you have heard about or seen a plethora of advertisements dedicated to fat burning pills. Just taking a stroll down the health aisle is proof enough that fat burners are all the rage in the health and supplement world. And with a name like that, who wouldn’t want to get in on these products. But with the thousands of products lining the shelves each year, it can be difficult to separate the legitimate fat burns from the hoaxes. Like most things in life, arming yourself with real facts will not only help avoid wasting money on things that don’t work, but also help you to avoid products that may cause harm to your health.

This guide will help you make informed choices about fat burners and give you all the facts about how to choose and utilize them in the best way possible.

What Are Fat Burning Pills?

There are a lot of products that have been marketed as fat burning pills but don’t actually work the same way traditional fat burners do. As much as we wish that they are a magic pill that will help us shed pounds and replace the muffin tops with abs without much effort, fat burners are actually a tool to be used alongside frequent exercise and a healthy diet. The disappointing but very real fact is that there is no pill on the market that just melts fat away without a change in lifestyle – despite what the labels may tell you. Fat burners are natural supplements that contain specific ingredients to encourage your body to metabolize fats and help your body burn more fuel while working out. They are also an incredible tool for energizing your workout while also leaving you feeling stronger, happier, and healthier overall.

How Do Fat Burning Pills Work?

The majority of fat burners either help to suppress your appetite, metabolize fats in the cells, or speed up metabolism. 

Important organs like the heart and brain use the fats we get in our diet as their main source of fuel to function, while the rest of the body primarily relies on glucose (carbs) for energy. The problem comes in when there is an excess of fats and carbohydrates in our diets and the body is unable to utilize it all.

Any glucose that does not get used for fuel is stored in the liver as glycogen. Insulin then converts the glycogen into fatty acids, which is then circulated throughout the body and stored as fat in adipose tissue.

Fat burning pills like Forskolin, for example, helps to speed up metabolism, which increases the body’s demand for energy and as a result, encourages the body to burn stored fats to meet its fuel demands. Other fat burners may include ingredients that block or stimulate specific enzymes and hormones to prevent the body from storing fats in the cells. 

The Different Mechanisms of Fat Burning Pills

Depending on the ingredients in the formula, fat burners work in several ways, each encouraging fat loss using a variety of mechanisms within the body. Here are a few examples:


Our bodies are constantly burning calories while we are resting or performing various functions, and one of the ways we burn more calories is when we produce heat. This is a metabolic process known as thermogenesis.

Thermogenesis - do fat burning pills really work?

There are various factors that can induce thermogenesis such as exercising, elevated insulin levels, hormones, diet, and the weather. Thermogenic fat burners induce the process of thermogenesis to effectively boost the body’s resting metabolic rate to burn more calories, resulting in more weight loss.

A few examples of thermogenic ingredients include Garcinia Cambogia, Green Coffee Bean Extract, Green Tea, Caffeine, and a synthetic chemical known as Theacrine. Essentially any ingredients that help to speed up the metabolism are considered to be thermogenic.

According to a study published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, thermogenic supplements increased the body’s resting metabolic rate (RMR) by 9.1 %. Meaning that the baseline RMR increased from burning 1,906 to burning 2,081 kcal in just 3 hours after ingesting the supplement. 


Lipolysis is an intricate natural process that involves the breakdown of lipids and hydrolyzing triglycerides into three fatty acids and glycerol. This metabolic pathway takes place in the adipose tissue stores.

When glucose reserves are running low during fasting periods or exercise, lipolysis facilitates the mobilization of fat by transporting them through the bloodstream and breaking the fats down into free fatty acids, which can then be used as fuel.

Fat burning ingredients help to induce lipolysis by stimulating various enzymes within the body.

Are There Side Effects?

Like any other tablet or capsule in the world, the answer to this question depends on a few factors such as the ingredients, dosage, and how sensitive you are to these ingredients. In general, most fat burners that use well researched natural ingredients are safe, but some people have reported minor side effects like headaches, nausea, and stomach discomfort. 

However, there are a few popular ingredients that some manufacturers continue to advertise and use in their formulas that are known to cause some adverse reactions. One of these ingredients is very high doses of pure caffeine.

Many of us start the day off with caffeine, that we sometimes forget that it is actually classified as a stimulant drug. High doses of caffeine can lead to vomiting, heightened anxiety, jitteriness, muscle convulsions, and tachycardia (rapid heartbeat).

Synephrine (Bitter Orange), Yohimbe, Hoodia Gordonii, are also associated with side effects like angina, acute kidney injury, and liver damage. Unfortunately, there is a common trend of manufacturers slipping harmful ingredients like these into fat burner formulas and as a result, many have been pulled from shelves and banned by the FDA countrywide. 

The good news is that there are a few fat burning ingredients that have been researched in-depth and proven to be safe and effective. 

Natural Fat Burners That Are Safe And Effective

If you are looking for an effective tool to enhance the body’s natural fat-burning capabilities, here are a few safe supplements that can improve cardiovascular capacity, muscle mass, and help you to reach your weight loss goals.

Caralluma Fimbriata

Caralluma Fimbriata

Caralluma Fimbriata is a plant native to India and Africa that belongs to the Apocynaceae family. It has been in use for centuries in times of fruitless hunts and famine to help curb hunger and thirst.

Today, research has discovered that it has potent weight loss benefits and also promotes overall wellness by improving antioxidant and energy levels. In addition to this, Caralluma Fimbriata also contains glucose-lowering properties.

How Does Caralluma Fimbriata Burn Fat?

Caralluma Fimbriata works in a few ways to encourage weight loss. The stem, leaves, flowers, and fruits of this plant contain active compounds that work as both an appetite suppressant and thermogenic supplement.

While some of the mechanisms of this plant are not fully understood yet, studies have concluded that Caralluma Fimbriata encourages fat burning by increasing the secretion of ATP (energy) molecules, which signals the brain that there is enough energy and does not need more food for fuel; ultimately inducing satiety.

Another way this plant helps to burn fat is by blocking specific enzymes known as ATP-citrate lyase, which plays an important role in the formation of fat production and storage.

Caralluma Fimbriata also acts as an appetite suppressant by reducing the production of neuropeptide Y and ghrelin, two hormones that are responsible for sending hunger signals within the body.

A study published in the North American Journal Of Medical Science found that Caralluma Fimbriata had a significant effect on hunger control and helped to curb compulsive overeating behaviors in children and adolescents suffering from Prader-Willi syndrome, a genetic disorder that causes an abnormal desire to overeat and usually leads to obesity. 

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How To Take Caralluma Fimbriata?

There are many different ways to add Caralluma Fimbriata to your diet. Some boil the plant or eat it raw, but due to its foul smell, most prefer to take it in capsule form to get the full effect of the extract.

If you are looking to take a supplement, be sure to opt for a reputable manufacturer with a formula that only contains 100% pure Caralluma Fimbriata extract and doesn’t contain any preservatives, additives, or artificial ingredients.

Products like Caralluma MD offer an optimal dose of 1600mg of pure Caralluma Fimbriata extract to aid with fat burning by blocking fat storage, suppressing the appetite, and boosting the metabolism.

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Carb Blocker

As the name suggests, Carb Blockers also known as Starch Blockers prevent your body from digesting carbs. The majority of well-researched carb blockers are made from white kidney bean extract and supporting ingredients such as chitosan and chromium to enhance weight loss effects and maintain blood sugar levels.

How Does A White Kidney Bean Carb Blocker Burn Fat?

There are two types of carbohydrates, simple and complex. Simple carbs can be found in most processed foods like sodas and candy but are also found in fruits and milk.

Complex carbs are found in whole foods with higher fiber and nutritional content such as grains, beans, and vegetables. In order for the body to absorb and use complex carbohydrates, they must be broken down into simple form first. This is done while we chew carbohydrate-rich foods.

The salivary glands start to produce a digestive enzyme called alpha-amylase, which helps to initiate the digestion process before complex carbohydrates enter the stomach. Once they are in the stomach, the carbs are broken down even further into glucose, which is then transported to the bloodstream and used as energy or, if in excess, stored as fat.

Carb Blockers prevent the body from breaking down carbs into simple sugars by inhibiting the production of alpha-amylase. This means that the calories from complex carbs are passed through the body undigested and do not cause a spike in blood glucose either. 

A study published in the International Journal Of Medical Sciences evaluated the effects of white kidney bean extract on 60 overweight men and women for 30 consecutive days. The trial found that those who had consumed the white kidney bean extract showed a significant reduction in body weight, adipose tissue thickness, fat mass, and hip, waist and thigh circumference compared to those who had taken a placebo.

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Another randomized study also found that those participants taking white kidney bean extract supplements lost a total of 7 pounds over 12 weeks while the placebo group gained an extra 3 pounds over the same period of time. 

In addition to white kidney bean extract, supporting ingredients like chitosan and chromium also help to burn fat. Chitosan is a dietary fiber that the body is unable to digest. When taken as a supplement, the large network of chitosan molecules binds to cholesterol, fat, and toxins in the gut. Since it cannot be digested, once it has been excreted, all the molecules it binds to in the gut also get flushed out along with it.

Chromium, an essential micromineral also helps to boost the efficiency of white kidney bean extract by lowering blood sugar and improving the body’s insulin response.  

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How To Take Carb Blockers?

It is possible to add more white kidney beans to your diet, but because beans tend to cause GI distress, gas, and bloating, it may not be possible to incorporate it into a daily diet. To unlock the fat-burning capabilities of white kidney beans without the side effects, many turn to supplements with added chitosan and chromium.

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Green Coffee

One of the most popular fat-burning pills on the market today is Green Coffee. Green Coffee is extracted from unroasted coffee beans. There is a wide variety of benefits associated with coffee beans, but one compound, in particular, holds most of the fat-burning potential in these delicious beans – chlorogenic acid. Chlorogenic acid helps to boost immunity, regulate blood sugar, and acts as a potent antioxidant to name just a few of the incredible benefits. But brewing a hot cup of java is not going to give the same effect as raw unroasted beans. Coffee beans lose most of their chlorogenic acid content once they have been heated and roasted, which is why the typical store-bought coffee does not offer any weight loss potential. 

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How Does Green Coffee Burn Fat?

There are a few ways in which the chlorogenic acid content in Green Coffee can help burn fat. Much like a Carb Blocker, chlorogenic acid inhibits the secretion of a specific enzyme. This enzyme is called alpha-glucosidase, which is also involved in the breakdown of carbohydrates and glucose into absorbable monosaccharides. By inhibiting this enzyme, glucose absorption is delayed meaning that there are no sudden spikes in insulin. Insulin plays a crucial role in the absorption of glucose and fat storage.

When the cells absorb too much glucose at once, insulin levels start to spike, which signals the body to convert any excess glucose into fat instead, ultimately leading to more weight gain.

In one study, 12 healthy subjects taking chlorogenic acid enriched coffee showed a 6.9% reduction in glucose absorption, which also lead to a significant drop in body mass of around 3 pounds over a period of 12 weeks. 

Another study evaluated the weight loss effects of Green Coffee on 50 participants suffering from metabolic syndrome and associated risk factors over the period of 8 weeks. The participants who had taken the Green Coffee extract supplement showed a reduction in waist circumference and blood pressure compared to the placebo group. The Green Coffee group also showed a significant improvement in fasting blood sugar levels.  

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How To Take Green Coffee?

While the beans are available in some stores, taking a Green Coffee supplement is an easier way to get an effective dose of chlorogenic acid without having to wait hours for the beans to soak. Green Coffee MD is a high-quality supplement that contains 1600mg of Green Coffee Bean Extract standardized to contain 50% chlorogenic acid to aid in boosting your metabolism, burning fat, and improving your mood.

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Garcinia Cambogia

Garcinia Cambogia is a small pumpkin-shaped fruit that has become one of the most popular fat burning pills on the market. The rind of this fruit contains a potent compound known as hydroxycitric acid, which has been found to combat belly fat, improve blood sugar, reduce leptin levels, improve digestion and alleviate inflammation.

How Does Garcinia Cambogia Burn Fat?

The high concentrations of hydroxycitric acid in the Garcinia Cambogia fruit help to burn off fat and lower blood fat levels by inhibiting a fat producing enzyme known as ATP citrate lyase and stimulating the production of fat-burning enzymes known as lipoprotein lipase. 

In both human and animal studies, Garcinia Cambogia resulted in reduced blood fats and the accumulation of belly fat in overweight individuals.

Another way this fruit helps to burn fat is by suppressing the appetite. While the exact mechanism behind this is not fully understood yet, studies have shown that hydroxycitric acid increases the production of serotonin in the brain. Serotonin is a hormone that is directly involved in curbing cravings and reducing appetite.

Another study shows that Garcinia Cambogia was effective in sustaining satiety while food consumption was significantly reduced. 

Individuals who may be prone to developing obesity due to their genetic makeup will also benefit from this fat burning supplement because it blocks the activity of obesity-related genes by inhibiting adipogenic enzymes involved in fatty acid synthesis and increasing hormone-sensitive lipase, which plays a key role in lipolysis.

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How To Take Garcinia Cambogia?

Garcinia Cambogia supplements are the best way to effectively burn fat. To feel the full effects of hydroxycitric acid, supplements must contain a potent concentration of the extract. According to research a concentration of between 60 to 95% provides the most weight loss benefit.

Due to the chemical structure of hydroxycitric acid, it should be bound to potassium in order to make it completely water-soluble, meaning that the body will be able to digest and absorb it much easier.

Garcinia MD contains 1600mg of hydroxycitric acid (standardized to 95%) as well as 100mg of potassium to enhance absorption and supplement any deficiencies that may occur on strict weight loss eating plans. 

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Exogenous Ketones

For those who are following a low carb keto lifestyle and want to rev up their fat-burning capabilities, Exogenous Ketones are a great way to reach your weight loss goals. They are also a useful tool for boosting energy levels and fighting the keto flu during the initial stages of the diet.

How Do Exogenous Ketones Burn Fat?

The ketogenic diet involves restricting carbohydrates and consuming healthier fatty foods. By doing this, you are switching your body’s primary fuel source from glucose to fats (ketone bodies). Once all glucose reserves in the body have been depleted, the liver starts to break down fats into free fatty acids, which are then broken down further to form molecules of energy known as ketones. This metabolic process is called ketosis.

The more ketones your body produces, the more energy is supplied to cells and organs. Exogenous (made outside the body) Ketones are designed to safely elevate blood ketone levels to help burn fat and keep you in ketosis even if you have gone a few carbs over the limit.

Ketone supplements contain a synthetic ketone body called Beta-Hydroxybutyrate (BHB) that is either bound to esters or mineral salts such as calcium, potassium, magnesium, and sodium.

The Ketone Ester formulation will only elevate ketone levels while Ketone BHB Salts not only elevate ketone levels but also help to supplement common mineral deficiencies that bring on flu symptoms such as fatigue, weakness, and dizziness while the body is transitioning into ketosis. 

Studies have also observed that Exogenous Ketones help to suppress the appetite by lowering levels of ghrelin, a specific hormone that increases food intake, stimulates hunger, and encourages fat storage. 

How To Take Exogenous Ketones?

Due to the popularity of the keto diet, there are a number of Exogenous Ketones available on the market ranging from candy bars to shakes and Ketone Ester drinks. However, due to the extra calories in the shakes and bars as well as the taste and cost of Ester drinks, most prefer using a keto supplement. But like most things, not all supplements are equal. Some only contain a few variations of BHB salts and do not contain any additional minerals like sodium or potassium.

To get the full fat-burning effects of keto supplements it’s best to opt for a formula that contains all four mineral BHB salts as well as MCT oil to help elevate ketone levels and promote a feeling of satiety. Approved Science Keto offers a potent blend of 200mg Beta-Hydroxybutyrate salts (calcium, potassium, magnesium, and sodium), 400mg of MCT oil, and 10mg of BioPerine® to increase absorption and enhance the bioavailability of the nutrients.

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