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Thread: Becoming "fat adapted". page

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    Zach's Avatar
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    Becoming "fat adapted".

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    Becoming a fat burning beast, being fat adapted, your body preferring fat for fuel. People throw around these terms around here all the time but what does this actually mean? Its it just sceudo/bro-science or is thee actually anything to it?

    When i think of being fat adapted, the only thing that it could mean is being in full ketosis. But even if you eat a tiny meal of carbs your body will automatically use those for fuel first. So your body never actually prefers burning fat and you never actually become better at burning it. Only if your starve your body of a carb source will it dip into fat stores more often. Also it will just use dietary protein or lean mass to make up the carbs to balance the carb/fat burning ratio.

    So is there actually anything to these sayings or are they just catch phrases used to sell books?

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    Have you read Marks book or any other paleo book?
    Have you bothered to read any part of this forum?
    Seriously, do you have nothing better to do than try to cause arguments?

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    Fat adaptation doesn't necessarily mean being carb-free or in ketosis all the time (although that's certainly one way to go about it). Fat adaptation is primarilly being in a state where carb intake matches activity level. When this is the case, you can effectively burn through your carbs and once you have, you begin to utilize fats for your primary fuel source.

    Being able to utilize fats as a fuel source is the key to being "adapted." it can take a little bit of time for your body to adjust to utilizing fat for fuel, but this is normal when you make any sort of change to your diet, your body has to get used to it. Even positive changes. As for the accusation that your body will "catabolize protein" to make glucose, the answer is, technically, yes. But this does not have to come from your muscles as long as you are consuming adequate amounts of dietary protein on a daily basis. In addition, the body needs very LITTLE glucose for proper functioning, so it makes what it needs, easily burns through it, and returns to fat burning once these needs have been fulfilled.

    Above all, the body needs "calories" to fuel it's metabolic processes and does not really care if these are from carbs or fat beyond the little amount of glucose needed for certain very specific processes. It will use what you feed the body. Feed it carbs, it burns carbs. Feed it fat, it burns fat.

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    Yes, it's "catch phrases" and mistaken science as well, because the burning of fat or free fatty acids in your blood is something that the body does most of the time. If you are resting or do low intensity work, then the body will burn fatty acids and the brain will get glucose from the liver. More intensity and the body will burn mostly glucose. So everything depends of activity level that's the main determinant of what fuel the body uses...

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    In my experience there is a gradient. If I eat a lot of high-carb foods, then I have to keep eating a lot of high-carb foods, and easily gain weight and stay hungry. When I eat more high-fat foods, not only do I stay full longer because fat digests slower, I also lose body fat easily. Protein is the real deal-breaker, though. Low protein will keep me hungry no matter what else I do.


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    The way i understand it and feel it it is adapting your body to use a blend of both fuels, rather than running on glucose alone and storing the dietary fat.

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    And Zach, weren't you low carb for a while?
    If so you did this without understanding any of that??

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    Quote Originally Posted by Drumroll View Post
    Fat adaptation doesn't necessarily mean being carb-free or in ketosis all the time (although that's certainly one way to go about it). Fat adaptation is primarilly being in a state where carb intake matches activity level. When this is the case, you can effectively burn through your carbs and once you have, you begin to utilize fats for your primary fuel source.

    Your body is always in a state of carb and fat burning. The only time this might not be true is if you severely overeat carbs and then its would be storing fat but im unsure if there is ever a time where the body wont choose one or the other for certain things.

    Being able to utilize fats as a fuel source is the key to being "adapted." it can take a little bit of time for your body to adjust to utilizing fat for fuel, but this is normal when you make any sort of change to your diet, your body has to get used to it. Even positive changes. As for the accusation that your body will "catabolize protein" to make glucose, the answer is, technically, yes. But this does not have to come from your muscles as long as you are consuming adequate amounts of dietary protein on a daily basis. In addition, the body needs very LITTLE glucose for proper functioning, so it makes what it needs, easily burns through it, and returns to fat burning once these needs have been fulfilled.

    Only when you are in a deficit of calories would your body want to dip into your fat stores or use ingested fast for more energy. I have seen people who are not trying to lose fat still be told to eat high fat to become a "fat burner", this just seems wrong.

    It wasnt an accusation, more of a fact and i did say that it will come from dietary protein as well. As for your assumption that the body needs very little glucose, i highly doubt that unless one is in a state of deep ketosis, almost all here are not. The brain alone needs anywhere from 30-120g of glucose a day. Then think about how much the body needs to keep blood sugar at normal ranges and anything else.

    Also i do not believe the body will ever burn through its glycogen stores, there will always need ot be glycogen in the liver for blood glucose levels and some in muscles for anything strenuous.


    Above all, the body needs "calories" to fuel it's metabolic processes and does not really care if these are from carbs or fat beyond the little amount of glucose needed for certain very specific processes. It will use what you feed the body. Feed it carbs, it burns carbs. Feed it fat, it burns fat.

    I dont think this is correct either. Yes your body will use what you feed it but it will use different macros by different mechanisms so its not as simple as eat fat = burn fat.

    My responses in bold.

    Ayla, yes i ate low carb. Mark and Robb can be very convincing, that does not meant they are correct.

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    Zach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Graycat View Post
    The way i understand it and feel it it is adapting your body to use a blend of both fuels, rather than running on glucose alone and storing the dietary fat.
    But then how could you lose fat on a high carb diet? This is why im questioning if there is such thing as a more efficient fat burner.

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