What Happens If You Take Fat Burners Without Working Out?

Man lifting two dumbells in the gym
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Whether you want to get in shape for the summer, or simply lose a few pounds, you can do it through several means. Exercising, going on a strict diet or taking fat burners is a highway to your perfect body. Yet, it is often said that each of these measures will not be effective without the others. But is it so? In this article, we will focus on fat burners and whether they work without working out. Do you want to learn the answer? Then read on!

What are fat burners?

Fat burners are supplements designed to reduce the amount of fat in your body. They do it through speeding up fat metabolism, impairing fat absorption, and enhancing energy expenditure. As such, they became quite popular among those who desire to lose weight.

The list of ingredients of fat burners varies among each supplement. It is worth noting that they often combine traditional, proven fat burning substances, such as caffeine or green tea, with the more complex ones targeted directly at fat loss. Fat burners may include:

  • caffeine,
  • green tea extracts,
  • taurine,
  • tea,
  • conjugated linoleic acid (CLA),
  • carnitine,
  • calcium,
  • choline,
  • chromium,
  • capsaicin,
  • dihydroxyacetone,
  • GBB,
  • HCL,
  • EGCG,
  • fucoxanthin,

and many more.

How do fat burners work?

If we want to answer whether fat burners work without working out, we need to understand their effect on our bodies. While we could summarize it as simply increasing fat loss, it is much more complex.

Fat burners tackle the problem in its source. They do not magically reduce fat and prevent its accumulation. Instead, they affect the processes in our body that are responsible for this, such as:

  • large appetite,
  • slow metabolism,
  • decreased energy expenditure,
  • bad fat oxidation during exercise.

These effects mean that, while on one hand, fat burners won’t be fully effective as the only fat burning solution, their effects go beyond enhancing the result of a workout.

Do fat burners work without exercise?

Now we can finally get to the core of our discussion: fat burners without working out. Knowing their effects on our body, the answer to whether they work without exercising is: it depends on which aspect your supplement focuses on.

Each fat burner will have different ingredients, thus boosting different elements of fat lost. This means that one supplement might be better when you actually work out, while another when you do not exercise. Thus, you need to be aware of the effect of each substance in fat burners to choose the ideal supplement for your situation.

For instance, knowing what GBB is, will help you understand that this is a great element for fat burning while exercising, since it boosts thermogenesis. On the other hand, the knowledge that green tea enhances metabolism helps you understand that it will work even without working out. Choosing the right supplement is crucial, therefore we will discuss the most popular ingredients in the next section.

Which fat burners are good even without working out – analysis of ingredients

If you desire a fat burner that does work without exercising, you need to focus on these three effects: accelerating fat metabolism, suppressing appetite and impairing fat absorption. So, which of the popular fat burner ingredients should you look for?

Green tea extracts

One of the main active compounds in green tea is EGCG. It is responsible for breaking down fat and releasing it to your bloodstream to provide energy for the organism. As a result, it both boosts metabolism and increases fat burning during exercising. You burn calories all the time, and using a fat burner with green tea extracts may boost this processes by 3-4%. Thus, when not planning to work out, choosing a fat burner with green tea extracts will be a good solution.


Taurine is one of the main elements taking part in the initial stage of fat metabolism. It is required to extract fat from the cells, which is later transported to the bloodstream by carnitine. Thus, it will help you lose on weight even when not exercising. Plus, it’s one of the most common fat burner ingredients, so you will probably find it in your supplements anyway.


Fucoxanthin has been proven to be an excellent fat burner ingredient for those not working out. It is so because it increases energy expenditure during rest. Our body burns calories all the time, though physical activity increases this process significantly. Yet, if you do not exercise, some calories will still be burned. And, if your fat burner contains fucoxanthin, this “passive” energy expenditure will be higher than usually.


DMHA or dimethylhexylamine is a popular substance used in pre-workouts or fat burners. Its two main effects are: boosting energy levels and reducing appetite. The latter is especially important if you consider taking fat burners without working out – it will help you stop from eating too much food, thus decreasing the amount of fat consumed and stored in your body.

Don’t know what pre-workouts are? Read our article: What does a pre-workout do?


Being the most popular stimulant around the world, it is not surprising that caffeine also made onto this list. This popular coffee or energy drink ingredient is known for stimulating fat break down and enhancing metabolism. If you are looking for a fat burner that does help without exercising, it has to contain caffeine. It is also worth mentioning that, although caffeine is excellent even without workouts, its full potential can be released only through maintaining a negative calorie balance. You can achieve it either by physical activity or by a strict diet, yet even if you don’t pay attention to it, caffeine will have a positive, fat burning effect on your body.

Is taking fat burners without working out worth it?

Many of the fat burner ingredients that work even without exercising, will still be much more effective when combined with physical activity. Thus, if you want to quickly lose weight, you should combine taking fat burners with trainings and proper diet. Only then will you achieve the best results.

Final thoughts

Although they will not be as effective as when combined with exercising, you can take fat burners even without working out. Yet, in such cases, pay attention to the ingredient list. Some substances enhance fat burning during physical activity, while other improve metabolism and decrease appetite, and you need to look for the latter if you do not desire to work out.

Did you like this article? You might also read: The benefits of testosterone boosters for men’s health and fitness


Jeukendrup, A. E., & Randell, R. (2011). Fat burners: nutrition supplements that increase fat metabolism. Obesity reviews : an official journal of the International Association for the Study of Obesity, 12(10), 841–851. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-789X.2011.00908.x




What are fat burners?

Fat burners are supplements designed to reduce the amount of fat in the body by increasing fat metabolism, impairing fat absorption, and enhancing energy expenditure.

How do fat burners work?

Fat burners target processes in the body that contribute to fat accumulation, such as large appetite, slow metabolism, decreased energy expenditure, and inefficient fat oxidation during exercise. They help increase fat loss by addressing these factors.

Do fat burners work without exercise?

The effectiveness of fat burners without exercise depends on the specific ingredients in the supplement. Some fat burners are designed to work better in conjunction with exercise, while others can still provide benefits even without physical activity. It’s important to understand the effects of each ingredient to choose the right fat burner for your needs.

Is taking fat burners without working out worth it?

While fat burners can have some benefits without exercise, they are generally more effective when combined with physical activity and a proper diet. For quicker weight loss and optimal results, it is recommended to use fat burners in conjunction with regular workouts and a healthy eating plan.

Man lifting two dumbells in the gym

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