Sesamin and Sesame Lignans: Overview
Sesamin is a lignan. Lignans are nutrient particles found in many types of oil-rich seeds. Lignans are indigestible to humans, but our intestinal bacteria metabolize them into compounds that have hormone-like effects in the body. Sesamin particles are derived from the same type of sesame seeds pressed for oil. Lignans of many types are found in other seed oils such as flax oil. Sesamin/sesame lignans have been shown to decrease fat storage and increase fat burning in the liver. Not surprisingly, sesamin lignans are used weight-loss aids. Unlike a lot of fat-burning products, sesame lignans have no stimulant properties.
The storage of excess calories as fat (which we want to minimize) and the degree to which existing fat is burned for energy (which we want to maximize) are both tightly-regulated processes. The body controls these processes by the interaction of various enzymes, hormones and cell receptors.
Sesamin activates a key cellular receptor involved in these processes, the Peroxisome Proliferator-Activator Receptor Alpha (PPAR alpha). By activating this receptor, sesame lignans increase the activity of liver enzymes that burn fat for energy, and decrease the activity of enzymes that store excess calories as fat.
Other Health Benefits of Sesame Lignans
In addition to promoting fat loss, sesame lignans may also support healthy cholesterol levels, as well as liver and kidney health. Sesamin may also have anti-inflammatory properties.
Using Sesame Lignans
Needless to say, sesame lignans are not a magic bullet for weight-loss. As always, users will obtain the most benefit by using sesamin in the context of an overall approach to weight loss that includes a proper diet and exercise. But for people willing commit to those changes, sesamin really is a terrific and legitimate way to accelerate and augment fat loss. Many bodybuilders and fitness models use sesamin products strategically, in the last few weeks of preparation before a contest, so they'll have every advantage in slimming down to the leanest condition possible.
Many users will be attracted to sesamin's non-stimulant property. For enhanced effects, sesamin can be "stacked" with other non-stimulant compounds that aid fat loss such as green tea extracts (which are available in decaf and naturally-caffeinated versions), CLA and glucomannan.