Thermogenics. If you’re involved in fitness and/or constantly seeking to improve your physique, you’re almost certain to be familiar with this term; however, if you’re not, thermogenic means tending to product heat. Why does this matter to us fitness enthusiasts? Thermogenic supplements are created to increase heat through metabolic stimulation, which in turn increases our energy expenditure and our potential ability to burn fat. Ultimately, the rate at which the body metabolizes fat cells determines how quickly we can gain or lose weight. Thermogenic products are great to assist in this process, but be sure to consult your physician before incorporating into your regime.
In addition to thermogenic supplements, there are certain foods and spices that have been shown to increase thermogenesis. In actuality, all foods are “thermogenic,” because the body must use energy to digest them, however, not all foods elicit the same thermic effect; lean protein from solid food sources has the most thermic effect, while fat has the least. This recipe features the following foods and spices that have been deemed to be elevate thermogenesis:
• LEAN PROTEIN from egg whites.
• CUMIN is useful for digestion and energy production, and may improve glycemic control in people with type-2 diabetes. The spice has a long history of medicinal use.
• CRUSHED RED PEPPER/CHILI FLAKES. Capsaicin, the alkaloid substance that gives hot peppers their pungent flavor, has been reported to increase thermogenesis.
• BLACK PEPPER. Piperine, the alkaloid responsible for the pungency of black pepper, assists the body’s thermogenesis by increasing the production of epinephrine in the adrenal glands
SPICY BREAKFAST BURRITO
1 tsp. olive oil
5 egg whites
3 TB red bell pepper, finely diced
1 TB chives, finely chopped
2 baby portabella mushrooms, finely diced (or white mushrooms)
1/2 tsp. crushed garlic
1/8 tsp. cumin (more or less, to taste)
1/8 tsp. crushed red pepper/chili flakes (more or less, to desired level of spiciness)
pinch black pepper
large low-carb tortilla (containing 80 calories) (you can use a regular tortilla, if you wish)
taco sauce to drizzle on top (optional)
How to Prepare
1. Spray a medium skillet with non-stick cooking spray and put over medium heat. Add the olive oil to coat the bottom of the pan.
2. Add the bell pepper, chives, mushrooms, and garlic. Sauté until tender, stirring frequently to avoid burning.
3. Add the egg whites, cumin, crushed pepper, and black pepper to the veggie mixture and scramble until eggs are done.
4. Lay the tortilla on a plate and scoop the egg white mixture into the center. Fold over corner of tortilla around egg mixture and roll tightly. Drizzle some taco sauce on top for additional flavor and spice. Enjoy!
100% TASTE, 0% GUILT
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Snitker S, Fujishima Y, et al. Effects of novel capsinoid treatment on fatness and energy metabolism in humans: possible pharmacogenetic implications. Am J Clin Nutr 2009;89, 45-50.
Whiting S, Derbyshire E and Tiwari B.K. Capsaicinoids and capsinoids. A potential role for weight management? A systematic review of the evidence. Appetite 2012;59, 341-348.
Ludy MJ, Moore GE and Mattes RD. The effects of capsaicin and capsiate on energy balance: critical review and meta-analyses of studies in humans. Chem Senses 2012;37, 103-121.
Yoneshiro T, Aita S, et al. Nonpungent capsaicin analogs (capsinoids) increase energy expenditure through the activation of brown adipose tissue in humans. Am J Clin Nutr 2012;95, 845-850.
Yoshioka M, Doucet E, et al. Combined effects of red pepper and caffeine consumption on 24 h energy balance in subjects given free access to foods. Br J Nutr 2001;85, 203-211.
Thermogenic Foods | Stefania Medvedik
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