Those of us determined to lose weight and improve our health and appearance are often willing to part with large amounts of cash in order to purchase the gym memberships, supplements and equipment that can help us to burn calories and tone down. While this is an admirable, we are sometimes perhaps a little too eager to part with our hard earned cash – particularly when there are so many natural fat burners out there that we can use for a much smaller price tag.
Take for instance avocados – available in all good supermarkets and highly useful natural fat burners that work in a variety of ways. And in fact, some of the nutrients and elements that make up avocados are even sold separately as fat burning products. Here we will look at why avocados are so great for weight loss and how they work.
L-Carnitine: First of all avocado is high in L-carnitine. This L-carnitine is an amino acid meaning it is a carbon compound that is found in protein (it's also an aphrodisiac so there's another reason to eat it at dinner!). This amino acid is used in the liver and it is used in fat metabolism and fat loss. Meanwhile it also improves energy production and blood circulation around the brain. So this is good stuff.
Fat metabolism is of course what we are interested in here though. Essentially the main role of L-carnitine is to carry the fat in our cells to the mitochondria. This is the part of the cells that burns fat in order to turn it into ATP – useable energy – via oxidation (which of course requires oxygen). Without L-carnitine you simply can't burn the fat in your body and that means that you're not going to get rid of it. Thus when you exercise you will burn more fat if you have a good amount of L-carnitine in your diet.
Monounsaturated Fat: On paper you might be forgiven for thinking avocado wouldn't be great for fat loss – after all its calories come 75% from fat... The good news though is that this is a good fat called monounsaturated fat. You might have heard of good fats – they are the fatty acids that play many important roles around the body and in this case monounsaturated fat will help to reduce the LDL cholesterol (low density lipoprotein) that causes heart problems and weight gain. It is believed then that it can increase the good high density lipoprotein – i.e. good cholesterol which has many health benefits. Studies have demonstrated the ability of avocado to improve cholesterol. By lowering your bad cholesterol you can increase your fitness and this can help you to exercise and lose more weight, furthermore you will also help your body to further improve its metabolism by getting more blood around the system more efficiently.
At the same time though these monounsaturated fats are also believed to help the body to process insulin. This is great for diabetics as it helps to keep glucose levels down, but for those trying to lose fat it is also another way in which it can speed up fat metabolism – as it's insulin which tells the body to start burning the glucose in the body for energy. This way it can encourage the body to burn more of the glucose available so that it doesn't get stored as fat in the first place.
All this also means that as well as helping to burn fat and lose weight, the humble avocado can also help you to manage some of the other conditions – namely diabetes and high cholesterol – that often occur alongside obesity.
Don't have too much of a good thing though – these fats are also positively correlated with breast cancer risk, so handle with care (they are also anti mouth cancer though).
Fiber: Avocados are high in fiber and this can help in many things – helping to detox the system by flushing through the body and clearing out cholesterol and the urinary and digestive tracts.
Potassium: Avocados are also great for supplying your body with a range of other nutrients. Specifically this includes magnesium, B vitamins, vitamin E and vitamin K. At the same time though they are also 60% higher in potassium that bananas – that's a lot of potassium. This again makes them great for those gym workouts as they can help prevent cramping; but more importantly it can help to reduce your belly fat by preventing fluid retention which is when the body holds on to fluids thus reducing definition.