Can green tea extract be used as a fat burner?

Among the many supplements out there claiming that they can help you achieve a healthier and sexier body, there is green tea extract. 

In fact, many weight loss or fat-burning supplements have nearly the same common ingredient: green tea extract.

There are scientifically-based solid claims that these unique green tea plants can help you lose weight

Additionally, green tea extracts provide positive health benefits aside from aiding in removing excess fats.

Some of these are lowering your risk of developing heart disease and suffering from any type of cancer. Green tea extracts are really a must-have on your daily diet, and you will know further why below. 

What are green tea extracts?

Green tea is considered one of the most popular teas and the most consumed beverage globally, basically next to water [1].

This tea is produced from unoxidized leaves of Camellia sinensis—the leaves are quickly heated through pan frying or steaming right after harvesting; then, they will be dried to prevent too much oxidation.

This is a different method compared to other types of tea, like oolong teas and black teas, where these undergo withering and oxidation processes.

With green tea’s unique approach, it is considered the least processed type of tea and contains the most antioxidants.

Green tea extracts are formulated and produced as supplements from green tea plants. It contains beneficial body ingredients, such as antioxidants, polyphenols, flavonoids of green tea, and other vitamins.

You can get the same amount of active ingredients in a cup of green tea in just one capsule. Moreover, green tea extracts can be made from the leaf wastes left from processing green tea; this usually happens in more prominent manufacturers.

what are green tea extracts
Photograph: Deenida/Shutterstock

How can green tea extracts burn your fat?

Drinking green tea, in general, can raise your body’s metabolic rate [2]; hence, you burn more calories just by having it in your system.

Additionally, experts further explained that this is because of its natural ingredients, particularly (1) caffeine and (2) catechins. These two are common antioxidants that you can also find in fruits, coffee, dark chocolates, and red wine. 

Caffeine ingredients in green tea extracts can aid fat burning.

Green tea extracts have caffeine as one of their active ingredients. Caffeine is a well-known stimulant that promotes fat-burning in your body and even helps improve your exercise performance.

An average cup of green tea typically has around 24 to 40 mg of caffeine, enough to help burn fat [3].

EGCG ingredients in green tea extracts can boost your metabolism. 

There are numerous antioxidants in green tea extracts, such as catechins and epigallocatechin gallate or EGCG, which refers to a substance that can help boost your metabolism. 

To burn fats, your body should break the fats first and move them into your bloodstream. Research suggests that the active compounds found in green tea can aid this procedure by boosting the effects of some fat-burning hormones. EGCG can help in producing an enzyme that breaks down fats. 

Basically, green tea extracts can increase your hormonal levels, telling your fat cells to break down your excess fats. Consequently, the broken-down fats go to your bloodstream and can be used as energy [4]. 

Furthermore, green tea extracts can increase fat burning, especially during exercise or workouts. This type of supplement can increase the burning of fats during physical activities.

In fact, there are several studies that concluded men who actually took a green tea extract before working out burned 17 percent more fat than men who did not take it. 

Taking green tea extracts can also reduce your regular appetite. You can easily lose weight with this because your intake of calories will be decreased than usual. 

Is it safe to take green tea extracts every day?

Taking green tea extracts is not the same as drinking cups of green tea. Although both have similar roots, their production process, active ingredient contents, and effects on your body may vary. 

In drinking green tea, you must drink around eight (8) cups every day, as this is considered a moderate and safest amount to consume [5].

Consuming more than eight cups of green tea may cause several negative side effects, such as mild to moderate headaches and irregular heartbeat. Over time, drinking excessive amounts of green tea may lead to liver injury. 

On the other hand, green tea extracts can be consumed in different forms, such as in capsules, liquid, or powder.

It is safe to take about 250 to 500 mg on a daily basis. This is suggested to be taken with food in your stomach. Taking more than this recommended amount may be toxic for you.

What are the positive effects of green tea?

Regularly taking one or two green tea extract supplements can give you many health benefits besides helping you burn your fats.

1. Fights cancer

One of green tea extracts’ ingredients is catechins which are linked to fighting potential cancer cells. Catechins are antioxidants that can block free radicals that affect your healthy cells and eventually lead to cancer [6].

Taking green tea extracts can significantly reduce your risk of developing various types of cancer in the breast, colon, oral cavity, pancreas, and prostate.

2. Reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease

Regular taking of green tea extracts can decrease your possibility of having heart problems, including heart attack, chest pains, or stroke. Green tea extracts can reduce your high cholesterol levels and high blood pressure. 

3. Can improve brain function

Significantly, green tea extracts can help improve your brain function. This includes your mood, vigilance, time responses, and memory.

What happens if you take too much green tea extract?

The idea of green tea extracts as a fast fat-burning supplement and an effective booster to lose weight may excite you that much and cause you to take more than the recommended doses.

Keep in mind that too much of anything is bad for you. You will be at risk if you consume too many green tea extracts. 

Short-term adverse effects

Some short-term adverse effects of taking too much green tea extract are anxiety, tremors, irritability, and sleeping problems. This is much more intense for those highly sensitive to caffeine [7].

Liver problems and other body organs are at risk

One major negative effect of taking too many green tea extracts is developing a liver problem, such as hepatitis or, worse, liver failure. Other organs of your body may be negatively impacted as well.

Taking above 1000 mg of green tea extracts can indirectly affect your lymph nodes and spleens. 

Block certain medications

In addition, green tea extracts may have high doses of vitamin K that can make your medication on blood thinning, like warfarin and aspirin, ineffective; this is a good note for those with diabetes.

Moreover, you may experience a severe increase in blood pressure if you take green tea extracts with Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitors (MAOIs).

Hence, it is recommended to consult your doctor before regularly taking supplements like green tea extracts. 

Risk of developing iron deficiency

Another thing to check before taking a green tea extract is its polyphenol content. Polyphenol is an antioxidant that can be good for you, but when taken in a high dose, this can give you health problems.

Too much polyphenol can cause iron deficiency, most especially if you are borderline anemic.

Lowers testosterone levels

Taking a lot of green tea extracts can also decrease your testosterone levels. This can further cause infertility issues for some men. 

How much green tea extract per day for weight loss?

Start with a low dose and gradually increase it to assess tolerance. Daily doses range from 250 mg to 500 mg of green tea extract [8].

Consult with a healthcare professional to determine the right dosage for your specific needs and health status.

Be aware that green tea extract contains caffeine, which can vary among products. Monitor your overall caffeine intake from other sources like coffee, tea, and energy drinks to avoid excessive consumption.

For monitoring and personalization, you can consider these things:

  • Regular monitoring: Keep track of your progress and any side effects while using green tea extract. Adjust the dosage if necessary based on your body’s response.
  • Individual variations: Recognize that the effectiveness and tolerance of green tea extract can vary from person to person. What works for one individual may not work the same way for another.
  • Consultation with professionals: Always consult with a healthcare professional before starting any new supplement regimen. Discuss your health goals, current medications, and any preexisting conditions to ensure safety and efficacy.

Incorporating green tea extract into your fat-burning regimen can be safe and effective when done with care and guidance.

By understanding the recommended dosage and potential risks, you can maximize the benefits of green tea extract while minimizing the chances of adverse effects.

Bottom line

The question of whether green tea extract can be used as a fat burner is a topic of keen interest. Taking green tea extracts is an effective way to burn fats as they turn fats into usable energy in your body.

Remember, though, that consuming green tea extracts moderately and sticking to the recommended doses should be followed at all times.

Starting with a low dose, monitoring for side effects, and consulting with a healthcare professional are critical steps in ensuring a safe and personalized approach. 

Ultimately, the journey toward effective fat loss extends beyond any single supplement. Combining green tea extract with a balanced diet, regular exercise, and a mindful approach to overall well-being can yield more significant and lasting results.

FAQs

Is green tea extract a fat burner?

Yes, green tea extract is believed to support fat burning due to its ability to increase thermogenesis and metabolism.

How does green tea extract burn fat?

Green tea extract promotes fat burning through mechanisms such as boosting metabolism and facilitating fat oxidation.

Is it safe to take green tea extract?

Green tea extract is generally safe when used in moderation, but individuals with certain medical conditions or caffeine sensitivities should exercise caution and consult a healthcare professional.

How much green tea extract do I need to take for it to affect weight loss?

The recommended dosage of green tea extract for weight loss typically ranges from 250 mg to 500 mg daily, but it’s best to consult with a healthcare professional for personalized guidance.

How to take green tea to reduce belly fat?

To reduce belly fat with green tea, you can incorporate it into your daily routine by drinking brewed green tea or taking green tea extract capsules, alongside a balanced diet and regular exercise.

[1] https://consumerreports.org/dieting-weight-loss/truth-about-green-tea-for-weight-loss/ 
[2] https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/320540 
[3] https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/caffeine/ 
[4] https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/green-tea-and-weight-loss#bottom-line 
[5] https://www.webmd.com/vitamins/ai/ingredientmono-960/green-tea 
[6] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9501439/ 
[7] https://www.urmc.rochester.edu/encyclopedia/content.aspx?contenttypeid=19&contentid=greenteaextract 
[8] https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0273230018300928

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