The majority of people reading this are probably wanting to know what supplements they should take to lose weight, so here’s a short list. First and foremost, make sure you’re eating the right foods. To quote Michael Pollan, “You can’t lose weight by just changing your plate order.” That’s not the point of eating vegetables. The point is to eat vegetables and lose weight. Next up, make sure you’re getting plenty of sleep and avoiding dehydration. Last but not least, hit the gym regularly to strengthen your muscles and increase your heart rate. The combination of all these factors will help you shed off that extra layer and be at your best health.
Let’s start with the most basic nutrient: vitamin D. It’s been shown to boost the body’s metabolic rate and thus, it will speed up the body’s process of losing weight. One study published in the Journal of Nutrition found vitamin D to be more effective than vitamin C at boosting the body’s natural killer cell activity which is essential for the immune system and disease prevention. The study also noted that vitamin D may help reduce triglycerides, cholesterol, and blood pressure. So, if you want to shed off some pounds, grab some vitamin D from the sun or a safe source such as vitamin D 3 injections.
Next up on our list is l-carnitine, which is found in the nuts, seeds, and oil of garlic and lemons. It’s an amino acid that functions as a transporter for fatty acids into our cells where they can be used for energy. When we’re short on carnitine we’re short on energy too so it’s important to get our daily requirements. One study published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that taking l-carnitine had a significantly greater effect on metabolic parameters than simply cutting back on salt or reducing fat in the individuals in the study. The study also noted that l-carnitine reduced plasma triglycerides and cholesterol.
Chromium is an essential mineral that is required for the functioning of our digestive system. Our bodies don’t produce it naturally, but it’s highly available in foods such as shellfish, beef, and pork. A study published in the Journal of Nutrition found that chromium was more effective at boosting the body’s adiponectin (an insulin sensitizing protein) than simply cutting back on salt or reducing fat in the individuals in the study.
What are adiponectin and insulin sensitizers?
- Adiponectin: This is an important protein produced by our fat cells that helps regulate our blood sugar levels. When insulin levels are normal, adiponectin levels are also typically normal and vice versa. So, if you’re looking to improve your blood sugar levels, consider boosting your adiponectin levels through nutrition or hormone therapy.
- Insulin Sensitizers: This is a class of drugs that improve the body’s insulin sensitivity, resulting in lower blood sugar levels and a reduction in overall body fat. While there are many insulin sensitizers available to patients, this is because the drug classification is highly specific. The most commonly prescribed drug in this class is Metformin; however, this drug can cause lactic acidosis in patients with liver disease.
- Lactic Acidosis: This is a potentially life-threatening complication that results from the metabolic deterioration of lactate to lactic acid. Since lactic acid interferes with the body’s oxidation of carbohydrates, those with high blood sugar levels, e.g., diabetics, are susceptible to this complication. Lactic acidosis is more commonly associated with the use of insulin sensitizers and other drugs that stimulate the adrenal glands. However, it can occur in patients taking large doses of chromium Picolinate.
Based on all this, it’s clear that a multitasked approach is required to optimize weight loss. Make sure you’re incorporating all the basics, such as nutrition, hydration, and exercise, into your routine. Once you’ve got that, additional supplements such as chromium Picolinate or L-Carnitine can be beneficial in furthering your weight loss goal.