News Flash! L-Carnitine and thermogenic foods unlock stored fat deposits releasing them to be burned for energy – a dream combo for your 2017 bikini body blitz…
It’s no ‘fad or fiction’ but science has uncovered the workings of L-Carnitine and a handful of thermogenic foods to be capable of increasing the body’s metabolism and fat burning abilities.
As we roll closer to summer many of you maybe considering which diet to choose in an attempt to trim down before packing a pair of flip-flops and heading to the beach.
The problem is that quick fix bikini body diets often don’t produce lasting results. As you tuck into your holiday ‘full-board’ buffet all your hard works starts to unravel and you go home carrying a load of unwanted rebound weight gain!
Science has uncovered a unique group of nutrients which activate the ‘thermogenic’ process (burning fat for energy or heat). Your body mainly generates energy by burning calories from the food you eat during normal metabolic reactions and when being active or during bursts of exercise, but scientists have also discovered that around 10% of calories are burned through diet-induced thermogenesis.
According to research spicing-up your food can help to fire-up your thermogenic potential! Capsaicin found in chilli peppers and piperine found in black pepper both increase thermogenesis, fat burning and also help switch off the appetite.
Green tea contains epigallocatechin gallate which also boosts thermogenesis and helps melt away abdominal fat deposits. Finally, coconut oil contains Medium Chain Triglycerides (MCTs) which prevent fat deposits being made and also increases fat burning.
Alongside all these wonderful thermogenic foods it’s also a good idea to supplement with the Acetyl L-Carnitine as this nutrient cleverly picks up long-chain fatty acids and transports them into the mitochondria where they are burned for energy.
Look for a ‘Liposomal’ form of Acetyl L-Carnitine, such as the Altrient brand, as this form has superior absorption and potency meaning it’s more likely to have real impact.
Not only does Carnitine increase the mitochondrial potential to burn fat, if taken in the form of Acetyl L-Carnitine (ALC) it has the ability to optimise brain function too.
Ok, I admit, there is nothing sexy about the word ‘sensible’ but when it comes to summer eating, it’s a sensible healthy diet topped with thermogenic foods that actually maps the route to feeling sassier about your body this summer.
So how do you achieve a sensible summer eating plan? Well, here are my Top 10 Summer Nutrition Rules to help get you started and keep you on track …
- Basic Nutrition - A sensible eating plan forms the foundations of a perfectly balanced diet. Start by focusing on the major food groups and a quick way to assess this is to think about a dinner plate – fill half the plate with fresh vegetables (that’s your fibre factor), next add some carbs to a quarter of your plate (think rice, pasta, quinoa, potatoes) then, in the final quarter, place a palm sized portion of protein (oily fish, white fish, lean meat, eggs, tofu) and top this with a thumb sized portion of fat (this could be nuts, seeds or a dressing or a healthy omega-3 oil).
- The Magic 80:20 - Nobody is perfect and it’s virtually impossible if not downright depressing being virtuous 100% of the time! Relax, enjoy your food and your summer by achieving your ultimate diet 80% of the time and allowing yourself ‘a little bit’ of the naughty-but-nice treats, just 20% of the time.
- Portion Sensible - Be mindful that your stomach capacity is the same size as your hands cupped together – this is a very important visual representation of your maximum portion size at each main meal. Eating portion sizes bigger than this simply stretches your stomach making it harder to feel full at your next meal.
- Breakfast Truth - It’s true, this is the most important meal of the day! Starting your day with a bowl of oats (think Bircher muesli, overnight oats, muesli, low-sugar granola or oat-based cereal) can keep you feeling full all the way to lunch time! If oats aren’t your thing then try eggs on spinach for a blast of protein.
- Carb Check – Eating a diet full of refined carbs (white rice, pasta, white bread, pastries, cakes, biscuits, sweets etc) creates blood sugar highs and lows and simply encourages weight gain, lethargy and energy dips. Ditch the sweet stuff and swap to complex carbs (brown rice, wholegrain pasta, wholegrain bread etc) these foods help you feel fuller for longer and contain B-vitamins for an energy boost!
- Soft Drinks – Slurping on sugary soft drinks and fruit juices is a dangerous way to easily clock up unwanted calories. Swap to water, green tea or herbal tea to help you reach your summer goals.
- Booze Watch – While we are on the subject of drinks, it’s worth keeping a tally on your units as these are also laced with calories that head straight for your waistline!
- No Cheese Please - I know it’s delicious but it’s also extremely high in saturated fats so keep a check on your portion size (think matchbox size) or cut cheese out of your diet as much as possible this summer.
- Snack Attack – Don’t leave long gaps in-between meals as this only sets the scene for those dreaded cravings. Instead stay ahead of your appetite by snacking on fresh fruit or a small handful of nuts or seeds.
- After 6pm – Make sure you have your main evening meal before 6pm as this helps keep you in the fat burning zone rather than storage mode. Eating late means less time to digest and burn off your food before your head for bed!
Ditch the fad diet, bag yourself some Altrient Acetyl L-Carnitine, work your way through these 10 nutrition tips and have yourself a sassy summer to remember!
Susie Perry Debice
BSc Hons, Dip ION Food Scientist and Nutritional Therapist