Eat less do more does not work when it comes to how to burn the fat.
Understanding a little bit about how your body burns fuel will clear up the apparent mystery as to why this is the case.
The calories in = calories out theory assumes two things:
- Your body treats all calories the same
- Your body stores energy in one way only
Neither of these are true, and the most relevant one if you want to know how to lose weight is how your body releases its stored energy.
Your body draws on its stored energy to keep going between meals.
Energy is stored in two ways:
- Glycogen (mainly in the liver) – limited and short-term storage
- Fat – unlimited and long-term storage
Glycogen is how glucose (which comes from carbs mainly) is stored, and is released quickly and easily between meals.
Glycogen stores are limited and as soon as they’re full excess glucose will be converted to fat and stored as fat.
Your body prefers to burn glycogen because it’s easier to do so. Your body will only start to tap into your fat reserves once most of the glycogen has gone – this takes quite a few hours.
Another thing to bear in mind is that your body cannot break down fat while insulin is circulating in your system.
How To Burn The Fat – Insulin Is The Switch
When you eat your body produces insulin.
- Enables glucose to enter cells so it can be used as energy right now
- Converts excess glucose into glycogen for energy between meals
- Converts the rest into fat
Whenever insulin is present you cannot break fat down.
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Carbs trigger insulin release and refined carbs like white flours and sugar cause huge amounts of insulin to be released. To a lesser extent animal protein triggers insulin release too.
These days many people are taking in calories for over 12 hours in any given 24 hour period. This means their system is never really free of insulin, which means they cannot break down their stored fat.
Even if you reduce your calories on a restricted diet – if you’re still eating over an extended period your body cannot access its own fat stores, due to insulin.
Most dieters get into the situation that they’re eating less than they need, but because of the timing of their eating they cannot release that short fall in calories from their own fat. In this situation your body has one option – slow your metabolism down, resulting in:
- Feeling tired and lethargic
- Weight loss plateau
- Very fast weight gain when you inevitably break the diet
Work With Your Body – Lose Your Fat
A few decades ago obesity was uncommon.
One reason for this is that most people were eating within a 12 hour window or less, and snacking wasn’t so commonplace. The overnight fast, and to a lesser extent the one between meals made the body tap into stored fat.
These days people are taking in calories for over 12 hours per day. Regular snacking adds enormously to the problem. This includes milk/sugar in tea and coffee, and any nightcaps in the evening.
How to burn the fat – the key is creating regular daily episodes of very low insulin levels. This allows your body to use its own reserves. Intermittent fasting is getting trendy these days, but really it is only getting some way back to what is normal for the human body.
I go much deeper on this in the class – How To Turn Your Fat Burning Switch On – which is a 90 minute class explaining exactly how to incorporate this into your life.
There are so many other health related benefits too – most health problems I can think of would benefit for some kind of fasting.
Have a great week!