If you've been reading this blog for more than a couple weeks, you know the basic, and most impactful ingredients of a good fat loss plan.
But there's one thing no one seems to be talking about.
That is, until a guy named Martin Berkhan released his book (The Leangains Method-. I strongly suggest buying this book, and taking the time to read it).
In it, he talks about a process called thermogenesis. Which is when calories, in a way, burn themselves.
Think of it like this...
Every time you eat food, it needs to be processed and stored in your body. This process requires energy (calories).
It's like, when you send someone $100 using PayPal, it costs $2.95 to process and send that money.
Same goes for the food you eat. But not all food is created equal. Some foods require a LOT of energy to process and store. Other foods require hardly any at all.
Now, if you want to burn some fat, this is where things get interesting.
By strategically eating highly-thermogenic foods, you can increase your calorie burn with no added effort (aside from chewing)
That's the theory.
Here's how to actually do it.
Eat More Protein
If I had a gun pressed into my temple, and I was forced to give just one piece of nutrition advice, there's no doubt, it would be Eat More Protein.
There are a lot of reasons for this, but one of the main one's is because it's so damn thermogenic.
On average, 27.5% of the calories you eat from protein are burned up just by processing, digesting, and storing it. That means, for every 100 calories of protein you eat, 27.5 of them are burned, effortlessly.
(Carbs and fat don't even come close, burning an average of 7% and 1.5% through thermogenesis, respectively)
On top of building muscle, keeping your stomach full, and reducing cravings, this makes eating plenty of protein a game-changer.
How much should you eat?
That depends on who you are, and what you're working towards. But between 1g- 1.5g per pound of body weight is a good, general guideline.
Eat Whole Foods
Can you get lean eating processed food?
We've seen people lose tons of weight eating nothing but Twinkies, just to prove weight loss is driven by calories in vs calories out.
But trying to get lean while eating processed foods puts you at a massive disadvantage. (And I mean, besides making you feel like trash.)
Whole foods are much more thermogenic than processed foods.
While we don't have exact numbers on this, one study has shown a meal made up of whole food to be nearly TWICE as thermogenic as a meal made up of processed food.
There are a lot of reasons to choose whole foods over processed, but this is a huge incentive for those looking to burn fat.
Caffeine- Drink It
Since caffeine is technically a drug, I don't want to be TOO pushy here. But for those who are down for a good cup of coffee, this next tidbit is further proof that coffee is a gift from the gods.
Just 100 mg of caffeine (1 cup of coffee) is shown to increase the metabolic rate by 4-5%. And as the dose increases, so does the metabolism. 450 mg of caffeine is shown to increase the metabolic rate by 16%.
Not only that, but when caffeine is taken with a meal, it increases the thermogenic effect of that food.
I do NOT recommend ramping up your caffeine intake for the sake of increased metabolic rate, and thermogenesis.
But if you love a good cup of coffee, this gives you the info you need to use it strategically.
That's it, my friend.
Keep in mind, calories in vs calories out is STILL the undisputed king of fat loss.
But if you have your calories in check, cashing in on the thermogenic effects of food will give you an edge that could make all the difference
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