As a dietitian, you can imagine the eye rolling that incurs every time someone asks me my opinion on fat burners and the new weight loss supplement they just bought because they saw some hot chick swear by it on Tiktok.
However, that doesn’t mean that there are zero supplements or compounds out there that actually work when it comes to fat loss. Yohimbine is one of those supplements.
But how effective is it? How should you take it and is it safe? Well, have a seat. Let’s talk.
What is Yohimbine and How Does It Work?
Yohimbine is a substance that is is naturally found in African plants and the bark of the yohimbine tree. The way that it works in the body is by stimulating the adrenal glands which is the part of your body that gives you an “adrenaline rush” by releasing certain chemicals. When these chemicals are released, they can bind to your fat cells and stimulate fat burning.
Several studies show that yohimbine is indeed effective at causing fat loss. What’s really awesome about it is that it binds to the receptors in your “stubborn fat” areas. You see, in fat cells, there are both alpha and beta receptors. You’ll typically find more alpha receptors in your lower tummy, butt and thighs. Otherwise known as your “trouble spots” that are damn hard to lose by diet and exercise alone.
Pretty cool, right?
There is also some evidence that yohimbine has an ergogenic effect on exercise performance by extending the time to fatigue. This is particularly significant because, if you’re cutting or shooting for fat loss, you should be in a calorie deficit or eating less than you are burning. And when you are in a calorie deficit and eating less, you tend to fatigue faster during exercise. Luckily, yohimbine can help with that.
How Should You Take Yohimbine?
The studies done that have shown yohimbine to be effective seem to show that the amount to take in order to be effective is about 0.2mg/kg body weight. If you want maximum results, you should take it in combination with a robust workout regimen as it increases the binding to the receptors of your stubborn fat that I mentioned earlier.
One big thing to remember, though. If you have elevated insulin in your system when you take yohimbine, it’s totally worthless. That’s right. High insulin cancels out all of the fat-burning benefits. So, you have to take this stuff when you’re in a fasted state. So, this could mean first thing in the morning or when you haven’t eaten any food for at least 4 hours.
Lastly, I would be remiss if I didn’t keep it real with you: don’t expect to be dropping weight like *that* or to become crazy shredded just because you’re supplementing with yohimbine. Its fat-burning effects certainly are helpful in giving you an extra edge, especially in combination with a sensible diet, fasted cardio and calorie deficit, but don’t have your expectations too high.
Is Yohimbine Safe?
There has been some research that shows that yohimbine can increase the effects of anxiety, which makes sense considering the body responds to stress by releasing adrenaline into the body and that is the exact mechanism of yohimbine. So, if you suffer from an anxiety disorder or something similar, this is a supplement it would be best for you to avoid. You should also avoid it if you have a heart condition as it can raise your blood pressure quite a bit.
Please know, though, that these side effects were typically seen at pretty high doses. At normal doses, most of us will simply feel a little jittery.
If you want to try a yohimbine supplement, I would recommend Forge by Legion Athletics. Not only does it contain the safe, clinically effective dose of yohimbine, but has other compounds to help you lose fat and preserve muscle to make the effects of yohimbine even more pronounced than just supplementing with it alone.
Also, Forge is a pre-workout fat loss supplement intended to be taken before fasted cardio which, if you remember, is the type of exercise with which yohimbine works the best.
The bottom line?
As with every fat-burning or weight loss supplement, you should never expect insanely significant results. However, if you want to harness every advantage you can to achieve fat loss, yohimbine is a natural, effective way to do that. I recommend taking your yohimbine from Forge and before fasted training for maximal results.
If you don't know where to start on a nutrition plan for fat loss, come join us at The Athlete's Method.