What Is Fat Adaptation?
Fat adaptation refers to the process of losing body fat while maintaining or even gaining muscle mass. A common misconception is that it’s impossible to lose fat without decreasing lean body mass (LBM). However, research shows that there are several ways to achieve this goal. One way is through caloric restriction, which results in a decrease in LBM. Another method involves increasing physical activity levels, but with less intensity than before. For example, if someone starts running five times per week instead of once every few weeks, they will still maintain their LBM because they’re burning fewer calories.
The third method is through dietary manipulation. This means eating foods that have been shown to increase LBM. Foods such as protein shakes, pre-workout drinks and fasted meals have all been used successfully in the past to induce fat loss.
In addition to these methods, some individuals have found success using drugs like steroids or growth hormones. These types of interventions tend to cause side effects that interfere with one’s ability to lose fat effectively. Some studies show that these drugs may actually increase your risk of developing health problems later in life.
How Long Does Fat Adaptation Last?
Once you’ve lost body fat through one of these methods, the next step is to maintain your goal weight. It’s important to remember that fat loss isn’t permanent. There’s no real way of keeping your lost weight off for good. This is due to the fact that you’re still consuming more calories than you’re burning. This means that if you fall off the wagon and stop eating healthily, you’ll very quickly regain any weight that you’ve lost.
It’s essential to remember that fat loss doesn’t work in one step. It’s a process that takes several weeks or months of hard work before seeing any results. Once you’ve achieved your goal weight, try to keep things at that level for as long as possible. This means continuing the same healthy habits and lifestyle choices you’ve made before.
These changes will not only help with fat loss, but they’ll prevent you from becoming obese again in the future.
Fat Adaptation While Fasting
Intermittent fasting has become popular over the past few years for a number of reasons. The most well known benefit is that it increases your insulin sensitivity. This makes it easier for you to burn fat and lose weight. The whole process involves limiting your food intake to a specific time window each day.
For example, you might only eat between 12pm and 8pm each day. During this period, you can consume all the food you like. After this time window has passed you’re not allowed to eat anything else until the next day.
When practicing intermittent fasting, you have to be careful about what you eat during your eating window. Your best bet is to stick to whole foods like meat, eggs, vegetables, fruit and nuts. Refined foods such as bread, pasta and sugary snacks should be avoided as much as possible. These types of foods are difficult to digest and can cause stomach issues when combined with intermittent fasting.
The shorter your eating window is, the more careful you need to be with what you’re eating.
Fasting and the Ketogenic Diet
The ketogenic diet was originally designed for treating epilepsy. It involves drastically reducing carbohydrate intake and replacing it with fat. This forces the body to start burning fat for energy rather than carbohydrates. The by-products of this process are called ketones.
Hence the name, the ketogenic diet.
The reduction of carbohydrates forces the body to rely on fat for fuel rather than glucose. This causes a buildup of ketones in the body, hence the name of the diet. The best way to load your body with these ketones is by not eating any carbohydrates at all. If you’re only eating meat, eggs and vegetables you should naturally be producing some ketones.
Sources & references used in this article:
Effect of fat adaptation and carbohydrate restoration on metabolism and performance during prolonged cycling by LM Burke, DJ Angus, GR Cox… – Journal of Applied …, 2000 – journals.physiology.org
Effects of fat adaptation and carbohydrate restoration on prolonged endurance exercise by AL Carey, HM Staudacher… – Journal of applied …, 2001 – journals.physiology.org
Effects of short-term fat adaptation on metabolism and performance of prolonged exercise by LM Burke, JA Hawley – Medicine and science in sports and …, 2002 – academia.edu
Fat adaptation followed by carbohydrate loading compromises high-intensity sprint performance by L Havemann, SJ West, JH Goedecke… – Journal of Applied …, 2006 – journals.physiology.org
Fat adaptation in well-trained athletes: effects on cell metabolism by WK Yeo, AL Carey, L Burke, LL Spriet… – Applied Physiology …, 2011 – NRC Research Press
Decreased PDH activation and glycogenolysis during exercise following fat adaptation with carbohydrate restoration by T Stellingwerff, LL Spriet, MJ Watt… – American Journal …, 2006 – journals.physiology.org
“Fat adaptation” for athletic performance: the nail in the coffin? by LM Burke, B Kiens – Journal of Applied Physiology, 2006 – journals.physiology.org