If you listen to the recent podcast that discusses some amazing facts about the link between exercise, fat loss and supplements, I mention two recent studies that identified scientifically proven ingredients in topical creams/lotions that can significantly increase the loss of adipose tissue. In the studies, subjects achieved significant fat loss (1-2mm loss of subcutaneous fat) using the product for a period of 4-12 weeks.
The first ingredient is called “glycyrrhetinic acid”. After a comprehensive search, I could only locate one cream that actually contained this ingredient. It is called TargeX TDS. It can be found by clicking here.
So how do these fat burning creams actually work?
The first method is via an increase in the release of norepinephrine. Unfortunately, when administered orally, norepinephrine can cause tachycardia (high heart rate), high blood pressure, and anxiety. Therefore, a transdermal application such as a skin lotion or cream, would have to be highly targeted to the adipose tissue underlying the area to which it was administered. When applied, the actual activity of the fat-burning enzymes (lipolytic enzymes) would be enhanced.
Another effect is vasodilation, or increased blood flow to a specific area. Enhancing blood flow to areas high in fat can increase the mobilization and disposal of free fatty acids that have been activated by “lipolysis”, the body's breakdown of fat. Of course, the lipolytic enzymes that allow for lipolysis would need to have been activated for this to work, thus a skin-heating cream would not be effective by itself.
A comprehensive article on this topic can be found by clicking here.
Study 1: Diabetes Obesity Metabolism, July 2007, primary author: Caruso
Study 2: Steroids, July 2005, primary author: Armanini