Anyone starting a weight loss program should know two things - it will be challenging, but it’s worth every second when you hit that goal.
The fact that it's challenging is why so many people are looking for the latest and greatest supplements to make that road they’re traveling a little easier. If we were talking about video games, supplements would be the cheat code that helps you win.
Cheat codes are fun, and supplements can be beneficial. However, if you’re going to spend your hard-earned cash, then you need to know what vitamins or supplements are the best to help you make your fitness aspirations your new reality.
These six supplements can be great assets to have on your side. You can choose to add a couple to your cabinet or invest in them all. Just make sure you talk to your physician about these before you add them into your plan.
Recommended: Need help losing fat? Take our free Fat Loss course.
A Word About Nutrition
Here’s another fact that has to be accepted before you do or buy anything. No supplement has the power or ability to overcome a bad nutrition plan, or a lack of one completely. You’ve probably heard the saying “you can’t out-train a bad diet,” Well, you can’t out-supplement one, either.
Nutrition is the foundation of any fitness program, and the sooner you apply a sound plan for yourself, the better off you’ll be. Fortunately for you, M&S has a great fat loss guide that can help you create the best strategy for yourself and your goals.
Got that? Good! Now, let’s talk supplements.
Caffeine is the first thing that comes to mind when people think of supplements for fat loss, so let’s get it out of the way.
People like taking caffeine because they notice an increase in energy, which they feel helps them have more productive workouts, workdays, or an increase in mood. But can it actually help when it comes to fat loss?
The short answer is yes, but details matter.
A 2021 study tested the effects of caffeine on Maximal Fat Oxidation rate (MFO) and aerobic capacity.1 Subjects that were not used to taking caffeine were given 3 milligrams of caffeine for every kilogram of bodyweight. A 220-pound man would be registered as 100 kilograms, so he was given 300 milligrams of caffeine.
The results showed that caffeine had a positive impact on MFO as well as the intensity of exercise and oxygen uptake, regardless of the time of day it was taken.
The key to this is that the subjects were not used to taking caffeine. Therefore, if you’re used to having caffeine every morning, or you regularly grab an energy drink, then the results may not be the same.
Does that mean you should up the caffeine even more? Quite the opposite. You should gradually stop taking it for a short time before starting back with it.
Calcium and Vitamin D
We’re pairing these two supplements together because they make a great tag team for weight loss.
Multivitamins are a great way to ensure that you have all the vitamins and minerals you need as an active person. Some nutrition diets don’t cover all the bases, so the multi can be a great staple in any supplement program.
Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA)
Not all supplements have to help you in the gym. Some can be beneficial at the dinner table. This is where CLA comes into play. The name of the game for weight loss is taking in fewer calories than what you expend.
CLA has been proven to favorably affect appetite, which can help you restrict the number of calories you eat. In one study, 54 people took part in a 13-week trial that included some people taking in either 1.8 or 3.6 grams of CLA per day. Others were given a placebo.3
The people that were given CLA reported that they felt full sooner, and that feelings of hunger decreased throughout the length of the study.
Supplementation of CLA first thing in the morning can potentially set you up for a successful day of healthy eating, which could be the ticket to you reaching your weight loss goals.
Technically, probiotics are living bacteria, which doesn’t read to be very appealing. However, they can be a great asset for your weight loss journey.
There are good and bad bacteria in your gut. When the bad bacteria are higher, your appetite will increase due to an increase in hormones.
The bacteria in probiotics can help maintain a positive balance between the good and bad bacteria, which will help you keep your appetite regulated.
A review of clinical trials that were published in 2020 confirmed that probiotic intake had a modulating effect on body weight as well as Body Mass Index (BMI).4
Furthermore, the progress was improved by regular use of probiotics over the long term. So, the initial response may not be as impressive, but the results over the long term can speak for themselves.
Yes, this supplement is associated with another aspect of men’s health, but it isn’t just a one-trick pony.
Taking as little as 20 milligrams of yohimbine per day was shown to help promote fat loss in elite male soccer players.5
It had no impact on muscle mass, but if you want to showcase the muscle you have already, then you may want to add yohimbine to the cart the next time you place an order.
Losing weight and getting into great shape is a challenging task, but it is possible.
With the proper training program, a sound nutrition plan, focus on recovery, and the right supplement strategy, you can change the way you look, feel, and perform not only in the short term but for many years to come.
The key is to be smart and consistent.
Learning as much as you can about what you’re putting into your body is crucial to reaching your maximum potential. These supplements can help save a lot of time and effort, so long as you’re willing to do the work.
- Ramírez-Maldonado, M., Jurado-Fasoli, L., del Coso, J. et al. Caffeine increases maximal fat oxidation during a graded exercise test: is there a diurnal variation?. J Int Soc Sports Nutr 18, 5 (2021).
- Shahar, Danit R et al. “Dairy calcium intake, serum vitamin D, and successful weight loss.” The American journal of clinical nutrition vol. 92,5 (2010): 1017-22.
- Kamphuis, M M J W et al. “Effect of conjugated linoleic acid supplementation after weight loss on appetite and food intake in overweight subjects.” European journal of clinical nutrition vol. 57,10 (2003): 1268-74.
- Wiciński M, Gębalski J, Gołębiewski J, Malinowski B. Probiotics for the Treatment of Overweight and Obesity in Humans-A Review of Clinical Trials. Microorganisms. 2020;8(8):1148. Published 2020 Jul 29.
- Ostojic, Sergej M. “Yohimbine: the effects on body composition and exercise performance in soccer players.” Research in sports medicine (Print) vol. 14,4 (2006): 289-99.