These supplements will let you lose weight. Four overrated “fat burners”

Although the base of programs aimed at reducing body weight are: diet and additional physical condition, there's no doubt that proper supplements are able to speed up the process of burning fat. Unfortunately, not all the products advertised as “slimming” contribute to faster loss of excessive kilograms. However, intensive marketing and “seasonal reactivations” cause that unnecessary ingredients create a group of many popular products, which are supposed to intensify burning fat. In this article you will find out which ingredients found in popular products will not help you lose weight.

Acai berry

Acai berries became famous few years ago, when the ads of this marvelous compound were noticed on various portals and websites. It was supposed to burn fat and, additionally, speed up building muscles, protect from development of many diseases, delay ageing and cause more vigour and energy. Although the stories about the exceptional benefits of this magic berry and the promises of spectacular metamorphosis were peculiar, the documents in a form of pictures with supposed changes of many satisfied consumers seemed convincing. It made many people buy this product, but, of course, nobody noticed similar results to those from the adverts. It should be stated, that, when it comes to the slimming properties, acai berries can easily compete with redcurrants, wild strawberries, cherries, gooseberries, pears or other popular fruits. In other words – these berries are nothing special. That's why it's not worth buying diet supplements based on the “unique” properties of acai berry, unless you want to slim your wallet.

HCA and Garcinia cambogia

Introducing products containing the extract of Garcinia cambogia into market was supposed to be a breakthrough in fighting against excess body mass. The active compound of the extract – hydroxycitric acid (HCA), was supposed to block gathering fat in adipocytes on the one hand, and on the other – smother hunger, speed up burning and supply energy. Unfortunately, scientific studies showed that, although HCA may lower the activity of one of the enzymes taking part in creating spare fat, using supplements containing this compound does not influence body mass and composition. In other words, it occurred that the extracts of Garcinia cambogia do not have application during slimming, as they do not speed up the reduction of spare fat. Using products based on the extracts from Garcinia cambogia in order to improve the process of losing weight just makes no sense. It would be better to drink a cup of coffee or green tea.


L-carnitine is one of the most popular substances of natural origin used as a supplement in order to speed up burning spare fat. It has to be admitted that l-carnitine is indispensable to enable the long-chain fatty acids (originating from food, fatty tissue or endogenic synthesis) burn, as these acids wouldn't be able to reach cell mitochondria, which are the energy centres of cells, where they are oxidized. Unfortunately, scientific studies prove that, apart from some exceptions, additional supplementation of l-carnitine neither speeds up the process of burning spare fat, or causes faster loss of excess body mass. It is caused by the fact that deficiency of l-carnitine rarely limits the process of burning spare fat. Therefore, it's not so realistic, that including a supplement containing this substance helps to get rid of overweight. This compound only has some pro-health potential. Unfortunately, it does not work as a “fat burner”.


Beta-Hydroxy beta-methylbutyric acid, which is the popular HMB, often advertised as a product which speeds up “shaping” the body. Many people use supplements containing this compound in order to accelerate reduction of fat and building muscles. Unfortunately, there are no good-quality scientific studies with the participation of physically active people and sportsmen, which would confirm the supposed properties of HMB. Available literature suggests that this compound may be anti-catabolic, which would save the muscle tissues from breakdown, whereas, this action is rather noticed among untrained individuals, than I case of people working out regularly. Therefore, using HMB in order to improve body aesthetics in the meaning of reduction of overweight, or as growth of muscle tissue, is unjustified.


Unfortunately, the recipes of many popular products, which are supposed to accelerate the process of burning spare fat, are often based on inefficient compounds. It's worth remembering, that acai berries, l-carnitine, HMB, or hydroxycitric acid do not support significantly the process of losing weight. The reason is that their supposed properties are not proven in the results of experiments done on people. Of course, the fact that there are some products on the market which don't work, is not the reason to think that all slimming supplements are overrated. Products based on compounds, such as caffeine, extracts from green, red and black tea, bitter orange, cayenne pepper, yerba mate, green coffee, bitter melon or cinnamon increase the energy expenditure and make the hormones, as well as the enzymes engaged in the process of releasing and burning spare fat, work more efficiently, which supports the process of faster loss of excess body mass.