We Asked a Doctor Whether Fat Burners for Men Actually Work, Here’s What He Said

best fat burners for men
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Getting in shape can be an uphill battle (sometimes literally). You eat well, you exercise consistently, drink enough water, sleep eight hours each night, pray to the weight loss gods, and do a slim down dance before bed every night. And yet? A few months in and you’re not exactly on the trajectory you were hoping for, and now you’re getting discouraged as a result. It sucks.

Perhaps that’s because diet culture really, really sucks. It’s a toxic culture full of misinformation, snake oil and shaming tactics that make perfectly healthy individuals feel lesser than simply for being bigger than. So if you’re determined to lose weight, we always recommend consulting a trusted healthcare professional first.

We know that it’s not always easy to motivate your muscles, bones and fat to move and adapt in the ways you want them to. You can give them all the tools to get the job done, and yet the bathroom scale can still give you the same lackluster reading that it did yesterday. Thankfully, there’s one more tool you can add to your fitness toolkit: the best fat burners for men.

Because we’re not your primary care physician or dietician, we decided to ask Dr. Justin Houman, a reproductive urologist and men’s health specialist in Beverly Hills, CA all about the efficacy of these supplements. The gist of what he said? You won’t drop 3 pant sizes magically overnight taking these. They can, however, complement other weight loss methods nicely. Keep reading for more of his thoughts, and find our top picks for the best fat burners for men in 2022, if you choose to invest in some.

  

What Are Fat Burners?

Fat burner supplements are dietary pills that claim to jumpstart natural fat-burning processes in the body. They typically include natural fat burners such as caffeine, green tea and yohimbine, an ingredient we’ll dive into a bit later.

Dr. Houman noted that the name “fat burner” is actually not the most accurate way to describe these supplements, or how they work.

“They’re not really ‘fat burners,’ it’s not like you take them and you’re burning fat. It’s kind of a misnomer. Just scientifically, it doesn’t work that way.”

  

What Do Fat Burners Do?

Dr. Houman noted that while the exact ingredients and marketing of fat burners varies from brand to brand, there are two distinct ways you can classify what fat burners do. Some increase your energy levels, some increase testosterone, and some do a combination of both.

“What fat burners do is they increase your energy levels. They have some kind of stimulant whether it’s caffeine, citrulline which is the amino acid that helps increase blood flow to your muscles, or various vitamins like B vitamins which can increase your energy levels. Essentially, this allows you to exercise harder whether it’s weightlifting, cardio — it allows you to exercise more therefore the idea is you’re burning more fat and burning more calories.”

He went on to explain “when you boost your testosterone levels you lean out easier, your lean muscle mass increases and your body fat composition, body fat percentage decreases.”

Fat burners and their effectiveness are controversial, but many men believe they can be an effective weight-loss tool. Before venturing into any new health routine, supplements included, it’s always a good idea to do your research and find the brand with the ingredient list that works best for you. Again, always consult your physician before adding a new supplement to your diet.

  

What to Consider Before Taking a Fat Burner

Dr. Houman noted that while fat burners can help you lose weight alongside other, healthy activities, they aren’t going to burn up fat on their own.

“Anyone who takes these should understand that by taking these it’s not going to burn fat by itself. Obviously you have to do the things that are helpful for fat burning. [Fat burners] could help support those types of things whether it’s eating a lean diet, exercising daily, exercising consistently, etc” said Dr. Houman.

“These supplements will help support those types of exercises and could complement, further perpetuate and allow for more fat loss when you do the things that are naturally helpful for weight loss.”

If you do choose to use a fat burner, here are the ones we recommend purchasing online. Please consult your physician before starting a new diet, supplement or regimen. You can find more pertinent information about fat burners, and answers to common FAQs, at the end of this piece.

  

1. Burn-XT Thermogenic Fat Burner

BEST OVERALL

The Burn XT supplement is one of the best fat burner supplements for men is keto-friendly, contains no artificial fillers and has more than 33,000 5-star reviews on Amazon. It has a 4-star rating for its reported strength and endurance-boosting abilities. It’s one of the top-rated fat-burning supplements available and is one of the most popular supplements for men who want some extra support as they reach their fitness goals. Every capsule is formulated to help burn fat, increase energy, preserve existing lean muscle, control appetite and increase metabolism.

burn-xt fat burner supplement, best fat burner supplements Courtesy of Amazon

  

2. Dry-XT Water Weight Loss Pill

BUDGET BUY

Shedding excess water weight is typically the easiest way to lose pounds quickly, and this pill targets water weight specifically. Although not technically a fat burner on its own, it’s an affordable option for men looking for ways to enhance muscle definition. It contains dandelion root extract, horsetail herb powder, green tea leaf extract, yerba mate powder and more.

water weight fat burner, best fat burners for men Courtesy of Amazon

  

3. Nugenix Thermo Fat Burner for Men

BEST ONE-A-DAY

This fat burner has a unique blend of ingredients, including coffeeberry, chromax, morosil and capsimax. Nugenix says that these ingredients help accelerate metabolism and boost energy and power while burning fat. The best part of this fat burner? It’s formulated to be taken only once a day to be effective. So instead of keeping track of pills multiple times a day, you can pop one with your multivitamin in the morning and be done.

Nugenix fat burner, best fat burner Courtesy of Amazon

  

4. Nobi Nutrition Green Tea Fat Burner

CONTENDER

This fat burner supplement leverages the power of green tea as its main ingredient. It is packed with antioxidants, EGCG and polyphenols and claims to support metabolism and help curb appetite. Nobi Nutrition also says that this natural green tea extract will support your cognitive abilities and give you a steady stream of energy throughout the day.

green tea fat burner, best fat burners for men Courtesy of Amazon

  

5. Nobi Nutrition Night Time Fat Burner

TAKE BEFORE BED

Burning fat in your sleep? In recognition of the fact that your metabolism is always hard at work, this fat burner for men is taken at night. Instead of ingredients like caffeine, it includes melatonin, a natural hormone that helps the body fall and stay asleep.

nobi nutrition sleep fat burner, best fat burners for men Courtesy of Amazon

  

6. Animal Cuts All-in-One Complete Fat Burner Supplement

ALL-IN-ONE PACKET

Each packet from Animal Cuts contains nine different pills, fat burners, and stimulants, designed to be taken for three weeks straight, followed by an off week. You can customize the packets to your liking by adding and removing pills based on your fitness goals. Animal Cuts has been creating supplements in the fitness space for over 30 years and manufactures its products in New Brunswick, NJ. Their long history in the industry is one of the reasons we’ve included them on our list of the best fat burners for men.

animal cuts supplements, best fat burner Courtesy of Amazon

  

7. Hydroxycut Hardcore Elite Weight Loss Supplement

TOP ENERGY SUPPLEMENTS

This fat burner supplement contains sensory-enhancing ingredients such as Coleus forskohlii and L-theanine so you can stay locked into the tough tasks at hand. It has caffeine for those days when you’re really trying to crush your workout goals, as well as those days where you’re just trying to not fall off the wagon and into a slice of cake.

hydroxycut weight loss supplement, best fat burners for men Courtesy of Amazon

  

8. Arazo Nutrition L-Carnitine 1000mg

BEST AMINO ACID

Arazo Nutrition says that its L-carnitine supplement can help boost energy and support workouts. This amino acid dietary supplement contains 330 milligrams of calcium and comes with 120 tablets in each bottle.

Arazo Nutrition Courtesy of Amazon

  

9. JYM SS8 Super Shredded 8 Fat Burner

ALSO CONSIDER

This SS8 fat burner supplement is a complete all-in-one supplement for men who want to lose weight, and it’s one of the more expensive options on our list of the best fat burners for men. This supplement contains energy-boosting ingredients such as caffeine, green tea extract, grains of paradise and cayenne pepper.

SS8 fat burner, best fat burners for men Courtesy of Amazon

  

Are There Any Natural Fat Burners?

Yes, there are natural fat burners that you can eat on their own to jumpstart your body’s metabolism and achieve your weight loss goals more quickly. Natural caffeine in coffee or tea may boost your metabolism by up to 11%, causing your body to use fat to produce energy more efficiently.

Green tea is another natural fat burner due to its antioxidant powerhouse catechin. This ingredient, alongside green tea’s natural caffeine, enhances metabolism and thermogenesis, which is the process by which your body uses fat to produce energy.

Protein is also crucial for burning fat, as it suppresses appetite and enhances metabolism. Soluble fiber is another essential natural fat burner that creates a gel-like substance in your gut by absorbing water that suppresses the appetite hormone ghrelin.

Lastly, yohimbine, also known as quebrachine, has been shown to yield substantial weight loss in some studies. Yohimbine is an evergreen tree native to Africa. Its bark contains the chemical yohimbine that blocks alpha-2 adrenergic receptors in the body, allowing adrenaline to stay in your system longer, therefore burning fat and producing energy for extended periods.

Of course, there’s no magic bullet when trying to lose weight. Ask your doctor about ingredients like these and be sure to use any supplements in the recommended dosage.

If you’re on the hunt for the best fat burners for men, there are a range of supplements designed to optimize male metabolism. Taking these pills isn’t an instant fix to weight loss woes, and the best way to achieve optimal physical health is by eating well and exercising — no matter what that bathroom scale says.

  

We Asked an Expert How To Lose Weight Without Exercising

Frequently Asked Questions About Fat Burners

What is a Fat Burner?

Fat burners are supplements marketed as ways to lose stubborn fat. They may contain stimulants, appetite suppressants or other ingredients designed to help men lose weight faster.

How Do Fat Burners Work?

"Fat burners are all composed of a variety of ingredients, so it’s difficult to make a blanket statement here, but generally they are marketed to help speed up metabolism and burn fat. Oftentimes these supplements contain caffeine and a variety of vitamins that may improve fat metabolism," said Serena Poon, celebrity chef and nutritionist.

Do Fat Burners Work?

According to the experts we talked to, fat burners won't lose the weight for you. They can complement other methods for losing weight — like a healthy diet and plenty of exercise — but taken on their own they won't do much.

Poon shared "I would recommend working with a professional who can help you identify the root cause of your weight loss resistance. There are many reasons that you might not be losing weight with a diet and exercise plan."

Poon also recommended making sure your specific weight loss program is in line with your needs. "For instance, one study shows that resistance training three times per week may help decrease abdominal fat and fat metabolism or maybe there are some sneaky ingredients in your diet that are hindering your weight loss efforts."

"Look into your sleep, rest and recovery schedule. Sleep deprivation and chronic stress can be two reasons that you can’t lose stubborn weight. Get your vitamin levels checked to see if you are inadequate in any important nutrients. Vitamins B6, B12, C, D, E, and Folate are all proven to support a healthy metabolism, so you may want to start by looking into these nutrients and incorporate foods that are rich in these vitamins into your regimen," said Poon.

She also added that "A hormone imbalance can also cause changes in your weight. Imbalanced hormones can be the result of a lack of sleep, stress, or an undiagnosed condition such as thyroid issues."

Are Fat Burners Healthy?

Both Dr. Houman and Poon echoed the same sentiment when it comes to fat burners: they aren't a quick fix and shouldn't be treated as such.

"It really is beneficial to put the energy into understanding your body and its needs and developing nutrition, exercise and mindfulness programs accordingly. Fat burners cannot be a long term solution and in some instances can be very dangerous," said Poon.

"For instance, there have been reports of fat burners causing liver damage (green tea extract, which is sometimes an ingredient in these supplements can also have deleterious effects on your liver).

Should I Take Fat Burners?

You might be asking yourself if you should take fat burners after all of this information. I asked both health professionals we interviewed for this piece whether or not they recommend them to patients trying to lose weight. Dr. Houman does not, and recommends a healthy balance of diet and exercise instead.

“I generally don’t recommend them. If somebody wants to lose weight, I tell them that losing weight comes down to three things: eating a healthy diet, exercising or moving around at least 20 minutes every day and sleeping, getting at least 7 hours of sleep," said Dr. Houman.

"If guys take these on their own it’s fine but I never recommend them for leaning out. Because there are other, better ways of doing that.”