Time to talk about your body’s potent fat burning hormone: HGH. I wanted to let you guys know up front that this post isn’t a grand scheme to sell some sort of HGH supplement. There are some pills and supplements that can make a little difference, but this article will be dedicated to increasing your Human Growth Hormone (HGH) with just a solid diet and exercise routine. I’ve talked in passing about HGH in the past, but felt the need for a post that goes a bit more in depth.
[The science behind HGH is as simple or as complex as you want to make it. I will touch on how HGH works in your body, but mainly focus on actions you can take to increase this natural fat burning hormone in your body. Oh yeah, this picture is suppose to be a mad scientist.]
The Basics: What is HGH (Human Growth Hormone)?
Human Growth Hormone is a hormone that is naturally produced by your pituitary gland your entire life. When you are younger it is one of the factors in increasing your height. As you age it mainly plays a role in repairing and “turning over” muscle tissue…as well as breaking down fat in your fat cells. There are several other benefits to this complex hormone, but I want to laser focus this article on these benefits…maintaining muscle (or gaining muscle) & dropping body fat.
We Produce Less HGH As We Get Older
One of the major reasons that celebrities are injecting HGH is to maintain the level they had in their teens and early 20’s. By the age of 60, I have read that HGH can be as low as 25% of the level of a young adult. It seems that this decline begins to take place from the age of 30 onward. Maybe this is why so many people quickly put on weight in their 30’s. The good news is that it doesn’t have to be that way…keep reading if you refuse to become flabby as you age!
HGH Increases Dramatically With Short Intense Exercise
Every once in a while, you need to workout intensely to insure maximum release of your natural fat burning hormone. A strategic diet and staying active can get you decent fat loss results…but if you want to reach your fat loss results in much less time, you need to maximize your body’s output of HGH. Here are some workouts I have outlined that you can include in your routine to insure that this happens.
Fasting Is a Very Potent Way to Increase HGH
The problem with eating every few hours is that when insulin levels are too high, your body will not produce HGH. I like to think of insulin as a “fat storage” hormone and HGH as a “fat releasing” hormone. When food is present in your system, your body releases insulin to store nutrients into the cells in your body. When insulin levels are too high, your body cannot burn fat…since your body is in storage mode. When insulin is low, that is when your body switches to using fat for energy…this is also when HGH will kick in and help release stored fat for energy. Fasting is an easy way to make this possible. Of course you can’t fast all the time…so that is where Intermittent Fasting comes in as an amazing way to drop fat while maintaining muscle. It is a great eating strategy to maximize HGH release.
Getting a Solid Night’s Sleep Contributes to HGH Release
HGH gets released when you hit deep REM sleep. The main thing to maximize HGH during this time is to try to get at least 8 hours of solid sleep per night. I have gone through periods of my life where I was living off an average of 5 hours per night, but I always found it tougher (still possible) to stay lean during these times. Do what you can in this regards, because you will be healthier and live longer by resting well each night.
Some Pointers to Maximize HGH and Fat Loss
I like to stack everything in my favor when trying to stay lean or lose body fat, so here are some of the things I’ve learned that maximize HGH release and fat loss.
Go into every workout on an empty stomach
This tip is slightly controversial, but works nonetheless. Working out in a fasted state takes HGH release to a high level. You are taking advantage of an intense workout and low level of insulin…it creates a perfect storm for maximum HGH release. The arguments against this method involve the idea of having a lower intensity level, due to fasting. Here is a whole article I wrote that addresses this point: Fasted Workouts and Fasted Cardio vs EPOC – For Fat Loss
Wait one hour before consuming your post workout meal
The last thing you want to do after working hard to release HGH is kill it with a big release of insulin. A shake right after working out will stop the fat releasing actions of HGH. It won’t make a huge difference, since the workout will contribute to a calorie deficit…but why not stack all the odds in your favor? Here is an article I wrote on this subject: Post Workout Shakes? Not If Fat Loss is Your Goal!
Capitalize on HGH’s effect of releasing stored body fat
HGH will pull stored body fat out of your fat cells and release them as fatty acids into your blood stream. What happens is that your body will use some of these fatty acids for energy and the remainder of these fatty acids get stored once again into your fat cells. A way to burn even more of these fatty acids is to do a bit of “steady state cardio” during this short window of opportunity. I have outlined the exact technique in this little 3 page site I built a couple of years ago: Low Body Fat Percentage Course
The “HGH Flush” – An Indicator of a Good HGH Workout
Over 10 years ago I read about a term called the “HGH Flush”. This isn’t something discussed very often, but is a great indicator of a good HGH-releasing workout. I’ll just quote what I wrote on an earlier post…When your skin feels hot and a bit red and you are short of breath, you have achieved the HGH flush. Many people probably haven’t experienced a good HGH flush since P.E. class in junior high. Strive for this when you hit the treadmill (or other intense interval type workout).
Note: Again…I’m not against the use of supplements that encourage the release of your body’s natural HGH. My stance on injecting anything is to simply not do it. I also wouldn’t take any synthetic HGH of any type, but that is just my opinion. I have achieved outstanding results with just solid diet and exercise strategies.
One More Thing: This won’t be the last HGH post. There are many more issues to address. I wanted to do this post since most of my HGH articles were written close to 2 years ago. This will be a good starting point for me to expand upon the subject (depending upon interest levels).