There are many little tricks that can be used to quickly and effortlessly boost your fat loss. Whenever you are stuck at a plateau and nothing seems to work then these little-known tricks come in handy. One of those tricks to naturally increase the fat-burning processes in the body is to amp up something called AMPK. In this article, I will explain what AMPK is and how it can accelerate the fat-burning process in the body.
ATP (adenosine triphosphate) is the ultimate energy currency in biology. The tri means there are three phosphates where the energy is stored. Plants create ATP with the energy that comes from the sun, while animals make ATP by burning carbohydrates, fats and proteins.
When these phosphates are released, energy is being spent, which turns the ATP into AMP (adenosine monophosphate). The “mono” means one. This monophosphate can then be juiced up with two more phosphates back to ATP (adenosine triphosphate).
This means that cells in our body are like rechargeable batteries. This leads us to AMPK (AMP-activated protein kinase).
What is AMPK and how it is involved in the fat burning process
A kinase is an enzyme that is activated by AMP. Whenever there is a buildup of AMP then it means the rechargeable batteries are running on empty. It is like the fuel in your creeping towards the E, in which case you would have to add more fuel, right? What AMPK does is flip the switch from fat storage to fat burning.
This is the reason why AMPK is not just known as the master energy sensor but also as the fat controller of the body.
AMPK discovery is considered to be one of the most important biomedical breakthroughs in the last couple of decades. But how exactly does AMPK help the fat-burning process in the human body?
By finding ways to activate AMPK, our bodies would burn more fat. There are several ways how this can be achieved. Depleting our energy stores with fasting and exercise is one method to activate AMPK in the body. Within just 20 minutes on a bike, there is a tripling of AMPK in the body. This occurs because muscles use up ATP to contract, which in turn causes AMP to build up in the body and then AMPK is activated. This is one of the many ways how exercise leads to weight loss.
Activating AMPK also results in mitochondrial biogenesis, which basically means the formation of extra mitochondria, which are the power plants within our cells where ATP is created and fat is burned.
So not only does the activation of AMPK cause more body fat to be burned but it also causes more fat-burning furnaces to be built. AMPK is the reason why endurance training enables people to gradually run farther and faster. Could AMPK be just like exercise in a pill? That is exactly how AMPK-activator drugs seems to work in mice. For example, when an AMPK-activator drug was given to sedentary mice for a period of 1 month, it boosted their endurance by 44%.
Reliable ways to ramp up AMPK to increase the fat burning process
There is big interest in AMPK activation by Big Pharma. Obese people, in general, are not willing to do the minimum amount of physical activity, so drugs that mimic endurance training are in great demand. The idea is that the activation of AMPK could mimic calorie restriction, making a fasting in a pill. When you stop eating food, your energy stores slowly will get depleted, which activates AMPK and makes the switch to start burning through our own fat stores. This could very well mean that AMPK activation could give the same fat burning benefits as fasting and exercise but without the sweat and hunger.
But weight loss through AMPK activation is just not that simple, since our appetites are increased by our brains. AMPK also increases hunger as well, forcing us to eat more food during energy deficit. This is the reason why certain antipsychotic drugs, like Zyprexa, cause people to gain weight – they activated AMPK in the brain.
This means that for it to work in regards to weight control, AMPK activity in the brain needs to be suppressed, ramped up throughout the rest of the body, which is exactly what nicotine seems to do.
Smoking is one of the unhealthiest things you could do to your body but smoking has also proven to be the most reliable ways to burn fat. The reason is thought to be due to the contrasting effects that nicotine has on AMPK activation in the body and the brain. Several placebo-controlled, randomized, double-blind studies have shown that nicotine reduces calorie intake and appetite.
Biopsies taken from smokers show a greater than 5 fold increase in AMPK activation when compared to the fat biopsies taken from non-smokers. This is the main reason why people who quit smoking gain weight. But are there any the same weight loss benefits of smoking without the negative health consequences of smoking?
Tobacco isn’t the only plant that contains nicotine. Many other plants that belong to the nightshade family, such as tomatoes, potatoes, bell peppers and eggplants, contain small amounts of nicotine.
Increase fat burning process with Barberries
Over 100 plant products have been shown to activate AMPK. Nicotine being one and berberine, which can be found in barberries, is another one. Barberries are some of the most antioxidant-packed dried fruits that can be found in stores, beating both goji berries and pomegranates.
Purified berberine, the purported active ingredient in barberries, has been shown successfully to induce weight loss in randomized controlled studies, earning it a patent as a “weight-loss agent.”2626 But since the supplement industry is so poorly regulated, you never know what is in the bottle. An analysis of 15 berberine supplements on the market found that 60% failed to match what was claimed on their labels.