HMB for Fat Loss
HMB for Fat Loss
When looking to burn a few extra calories we often turn to the internet for some added help. However, a few clicks in and it quickly becomes a minefield of decision-making expectations.
Of course, nothing can beat hard work and consistency when it comes to eating well and exercising. However, a supplement to support your fat loss goals can help to speed up your progress. But, what do all these body recomposition supplements look like and do they work?
Well, for one HMB could well be your go-to to help you support your weight loss goals. HMB provides a beneficial effect on weight loss by restricting the amount of muscle tissue that can be broken down by the body. To you and me, this means the body has to get its energy from breaking down other tissue, that tissue is fat.
So, by taking HMB you increase the amount of fat that your body preferentially breaks down for energy (1).
What is it?
Beta-hydroxy-beta-methyl butyrate, or HMB for short, thank goodness, is a metabolite of the amino acid leucine that appears to be very effective in the prevention of the breakdown of muscle protein.
HMB is naturally produced in small amounts when your body breaks down leucine, an essential amino acid that you can get through eating protein foods including milk and Greek yogurt, soybeans, beef and chicken.
It can also naturally be found in very small amounts in foods like avocado, grapefruit, cauliflower and catfish. But it’s difficult to get amounts found to support fat loss just by diet alone.
So this is where the supplement HMB comes in, this nutrition supplement helps to decrease body fat. There is some evidence that HMB promotes fat loss when combined with exercise, through protecting muscle and enhancing fat oxidation.
HMB for fat loss seems to work primarily through reducing protein muscle breakdown whilst increasing protein development. This process protects muscle tissue, reduces muscle loss and improves muscle growth. Sounds good to me!
With this in mind, fat loss is then increased by promoting the use of stored body fat to meet the body’s energy needs instead of using the protein found in muscle and other tissues. Bye, bye body fat!
Studies suggest that HMB may further improve fatty acid oxidation by influencing proteins that affect energy metabolism, such as adenosine mono-phosphate protein kinase (AMPK), resulting in more fat being burned for energy (2).
Further research found that HMB intake in endurance training has an advantageous effect on the increase in aerobic capacity and the increase of fat loss (3).
The main benefit of HMB it its ability to create a net positive balance of muscle turnover — that is more muscle building than breakdown. Keeping your goal of fat loss in mind HMB can then help preserve lean body mass while targeting fat mass. This can be useful for people who are trying to lose weight without losing muscle.
To maintain or gain muscle tissue, protein synthesis must either equal or exceed protein breakdown. However, on a calorie-deficit diet, your body might breakdown muscle tissue to fulfil its energy cravings, not good if you’re looking to have a lean muscular body.
This does causes muscle loss; instead, as we are looking for fat loss your aim should be for your body to breakdown body fat as energy. If muscle can be maintained through HMB supplementation then your body has the opportunity to make the most of your recovery process and potentially burn your body fat as fuel instead!