Risks associated with fat burners: A toxicological perspective

Food Chem Toxicol. 2019 Jan;123:205-224. doi: 10.1016/j.fct.2018.10.051. Epub 2018 Oct 26.


Dietary supplements "fat burners", freely available on the market, are intended to promote weight loss and reduce fat accumulation, either via stimulation of lipolysis or by inhibition of lipogenesis. Proponents claim that fat burners can increase fat metabolism, although their usefulness remains controversial. Fat burners are usually claimed to be of natural origin and viewed as being inherently safe. This review focuses on the most common ingredients of natural origin usually found in the fat burners, their molecular mechanisms of action and the toxicological profiles of these compounds in order to gain an insight into their safety.

Keywords: Adverse effects; Dietary supplements; Fat burners; Mechanism of action; Safety; Toxicity.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Dietary Supplements / analysis
  • Dietary Supplements / toxicity*
  • Humans
  • Lipid Metabolism / drug effects
  • Lipogenesis / drug effects
  • Lipolysis / drug effects
  • Weight Loss / drug effects