Fat Burners: Oh Ngo You Didn’t!

Fat Burners are not exactly what they are advertised to be.
Fat Burners are not exactly what they are advertised to be.

As a Registered Dietitian, I am trained to be super objective and never associate things as “good” or “bad.” It’s really difficult to remain silent or objective when I hear such blatantly bad and unsupported advice out there. So, whenever I hear companies or “experts” misinforming people to take advantage of their situation to turn a profit, I get really upset! So, instead of being rude, I will use scientific evidence, common sense, and a dash of humor to explain why I don’t recommend certain unsafe practices. Whether it’s a weird diet trend or a dangerous supplement, I’m going to call out the manufacturers and say, “Oh Ngo You Didn’t!” (credit: Adrian Gonzalez)

First up are fat burners. So, the idea is scientifically sound enough, right? Just take this pill and your body will just burn its fat right off. How easy is that?! WRONG. 

These pills are made up of caffeine, ephedrine, aspirin, and other strange ingredients (what the heck is a raspberry ketone?). All of these ingredients are meant to stimulate your nervous system and raise your metabolism. The claim is that if you take this fat burner pill, then you will burn more calories at rest (the state in which your body uses more of your body fat as fuel). It’s like magic. But do they help? Not really. They always come with the disclaimer: results limited without balanced diet and exercise. Womp womp.

Ultimately, fat burners fall into the vague category of supplements which are unregulated by the FDA so their safety and effectiveness is unevaluated. Very comforting, I know. My advice is to safely exercise and eat healthfully. Also, understand that body fat is not bad. Fat helps regulate hormones, insulate, helps nervous system function, etc. There should be more commercials on TV that promote positive mental and emotional health instead of fat-shaming.

Don’t let companies trick you into believing that pills are better than real food. Fat burner manufacturers…Oh Ngo You Didn’t!

Thomas Ngo, RD
Registered Dietitian
Facebook–The More You Ngo


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