Often weight loss and protein supplements are predominantly thought of as either male orientated or miracle supplements, and many women are put off taking them when considering a calorie controlled diet. It can be very beneficial for women to consume supplements, and there are no real reasons why women should be put off using it.
Weight loss supplements
When looking for a simple way to weight loss, most people tend to hit the gym and amend their diet to shed the unwanted pounds. But in addition to exercise, and in order to get the maximum benefits from it, there are nutritional supplements that can aid you in your fat loss plan. Not a ‘miracle’ weight loss solution, instead fat burners support your weight loss goals by enhancing the methods you are already using to get yourself fat free.
Among the most popular and effective fat burners are thermogenics – supplements that raise your body temperature to help you burn more calories during exercise. They also increase your metabolic rate – the rate at which your body burns calories – by simulating a release of adrenaline. Nearly all thermogenic supplements contain caffeine, in forms such as Green Tea extract, as a stimulant. Caffeine is proven to increase the metabolic rate, and is great for giving you pre-workout energy. Other popular fat burners which can be used to supplement weight loss include Omega-3 fats like fish oil and CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid).
Thermogenics can also help to suppress your appetite by tricking your brain into thinking that your stomach is full. This is particularly useful for people who have trouble controlling cravings for ‘cheat’ foods. Bitter orange peel or extract is used as an ingredient as it not only suppresses your appetite, but also increases energy levels.
Also known as stimulant fat burners due to how they can often be ‘felt’ working, thermogenics are the best seller amongst fat loss products. Not just pre-workout motivators, thermogenics also mobilise fat by combining the right ingredients.
With 500mg of Green Tea extract per serving, thermogenic supplements contain a mighty amount of caffeine and chemical polyphenols called catechins, including ‘epigallocatechin gallate’ – one of the most important legal and natural molecules in weight loss. Bitter orange peel levels are also important in weight management products and BULK POWDERS™ contain the highest levels on the market.
Additional ingredients to thermogenics include a form of hot pepper extract called Cayenne, and Green Coffee extract. Cayenne peppers cause your body temperature to rise and through cooling it, you burn additional calories. Green coffee beans are coffee beans that are yet to be roasted and are being welcomed as a revolutionary new weight-loss product as they contain chlorogenic acid, which slow the release of glucose into the body after a meal, thereby promoting weight loss.
Protein supplements and a balanced diet
Protein is a great tool for your workout regime, and is suitable for women to use without getting the undesired side effects and results that people often think it produces. Proteins are very thermogenic. The human body has to work 30% harder to digest protein foods when compared to carbohydrates and fats. Incorporating any source of protein whether its through natural food sources or supplements is a great way to kick-start a weight-loss regime.
A healthy and balanced diet is still needed to support your weight reduction plan, good nutrition starts with the basics – a well-rounded diet consisting of whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables, healthy fats and protein. Protein shakes also contain fats and carbohydrates, but if you are looking to use protein shakes as a slimming aid, it might be beneficial to substitute a protein shake for one of your daily meals.
Some good tips for a healthy diet, that will reduce your calorie intake as well as staying healthy during your exercise programme, include utilising a good protein to carb ratio.
Protein is an essential part of any healthy diet. Powders often get a bad name for actually damaging your body more than helping it. This can make protein very off-putting for women. But the side effects of using protein supplements are very limited. One side effect for women is that a high protein diet has been shown to increase calcium excretion in women. However, a high protein diet in women has also been shown to result in calcium retention which gives a net result of increased calcium retention. Calcium is very important for women as it helps to protect against bone tissue loss and can guard off osteoporosis as women age.
Often women worry that supplementing their diet with a protein shake with an aim of weight loss will bulk you up. However, instead of being a bulking supplement, protein powder is a dietary supplement consisting of proteins derived from food sources. The proteins found in wholefoods are no different than the ones found in a protein shake, and mirroring food, the only time protein powders will cause weight gain is if you over consume them.
In fact, protein is actually very low in calories, and will fill you up. Complex carbohydrates increase your sugar level whilst protein helps you to control your hunger and gives you sustained energy. Think of the Atkins diet where the basic principles are to push your body into ketosis by eating a diet low in carbohydrates and high in protein. It is important to remember that protein powder is dietary supplement used because of its convenience, and should not be used to replace food.
How to incorporate supplements into your diet
To get you started, determining how much protein you need to consume daily is really important. This helps to avoid over consumption and weight gain. Protein intake varies for each individual but a good rule of thumb is that adults should have a minimum of 0.8g of protein per kilogram of body weight.
Making a morning serving of protein powder mix or eating a thermogenic breakfast is one of the most important things you can do to kick-start your metabolism. Often labelled ‘the most important meal of the day’ it helps you to gain sustained energy to last you until lunch time. If you’re following a low calorie weight loss plan, small changes like making your shakes with water or skimmed milk instead of full fat milk really help.
A popular way to ‘trick’ your body into thinking it’s full can be as simple as having a glass of water 15 minutes before a meal. You could either replace this with a protein shake or eat a high fat-burning lunch which will have the same desired effect – both will leave you feeling more satisfied after you’ve eaten and help you feel fuller for longer.
If you’re following this type of diet religiously, it’s unlikely you will feel the afternoon energy dip. If you’re new to the regime, have a small protein shake or a handful of nuts and seeds. These are complete proteins which give you all the nutrition you need and are packed with ‘good fats’.
Similar to a lunchtime routine, have a shake before you eat your dinner. Alternatively eat a high protein meal of fish, poached eggs and wilted kale. This sort of menu choice will set you up for the rest of the evening and help combat ‘evening snacking’
Your diet has a major effect on your food cravings, your stress levels, and your energy throughout the day. By making smart food choices and developing healthy eating habits, you’ll find it much easier to stay slim, control cravings, and feel energetic all day long. Using fat burners doesn’t need to be a complex process – simply supplement your diet with a thermogenic or protein shakes and watch as your stubborn body fat reduces leaving you with the physique you’ve been working so hard to achieve.
Simon Jurkiw is a renowned performance nutritionist, who has previously written for or been featured in many publications, including: Men’s Health, Metro, WebMD, Fighter’s Only and AskMen, as well as appearing on MTV and Absolute Radio. Now working for BULK POWDERS™ as their Product Director, he develops whey protein products for use by professional athletes, bodybuilders and people looking to improve their fitness and physique. He is currently the nutritionist for Olympic gold medal winning boxer James DeGale and worked previously with Watford FC.