What we actually know about fat
Fats are the usual accused for overweight and obesity, and it is justified. But what do we know about their role in the body and why do specialists do not recommend us to exclude fat from our menu? It is because fat has numerous functions in the organism.
They are a source of energy and can produce twice as much heat than carbohydrates that provide glucose to the body. Subcutaneous fat tissue protects against hypothermia and allows activity at different temperatures.
The visceral fat protects the abdominal organs from trauma, and the specific layer it forms keeps them and maintains their correct position. Fats, however, are not only passive tissue, they also have endocrine function, interact with insulin, and affect female hormones. In case of fat tissue deficiency, the menstruation stops, and the condition is known as amenorrhea. The cause is hormonal. Thus, fat affect female reproduction system, but it also affect the male one.
In addition, fat tissues are involved in the regulation of nutrients, and they are important for the condition of the nails, hair and skin. The required level of fat for men is 3% and for the women – 9%. Exceeding or going below these limits leads to health problems.
Excessive fat causes processes that are harmful to both women and men. Men with overweight suffer from decreased testosterone, because this hormone is suppressed by the production of estrogen. This hormonal deficiency in adulthood can cause infertility, and if it happens during adolescence, sexual development may slow down. In women that are overweight due to hormonal imbalances, hyperprolactinaemia, polycystic ovary syndrome and other conditions may occur.
When it comes to fat, it has to be taken into account that they it occur also due to excessive intake of proteins and carbohydrates, in particular due to the amino acids and glucose. So overeating, no matter with what food, is not advisable because it leads to accumulation of fat tissue.
How to get rid of fat
The number of fat cells in the organism is sustainable – it can change over the years, but only insignificantly. The amount of fact in these cells is variable, as they can be “stretched” a lot – the more the fat, the greater their mass is. So when we talk about burning fat, it’s not about reducing the number of fat cells, but we get rid of the fat inside them.
To get rid of excess fat, the body must have a balanced energy shortage so the organism can start consuming energy from fat. Blood flow transmits special hormones and enzymes to the fat cells, which help to release fat. Again through the blood, fat reaches the muscles that burn it in the mitochondria – they are cellular organelles that are universal and are often called “power plants for the cells”.
Fat burning require oxygen and enzymes that react with fat. If the enzymes and oxygen are not enough, the fat will not be converted into energy and will return to the body. Thus, physical activity is required for the proper weight loss, which should be accompanied with a high oxygen uptake, as well as consumption of protein foods that contain all enzymes necessary for fat burning.
Here we should mention that fat comes second as a source of energy for the body. The organism first looks for glycogen, which is a more powerful energy source and is easier to transform. Then comes the fat. Therefore, the workout should be at least half an hour. Otherwise, especially if you do not follow a right diet, the “burning”will not reach the fat during the exercise.
Various activities such as cycling, jogging, swimming and others, contribute to the activation of oxygen intake. These activities are most useful for fat burning. In fact, it is best to combine earobic exercises with more intense workouts, so the body will not adapt to moderate load, which causes the weight loss to stop after time.
How to break down fat and products that help
Fat degrades at different stages. First it enters the gastrointestinal tract with food. Then it is processes in the gallbladder and with the help of enzymes, and then turned into glycerol and fatty acids that permeate the digestive mucous membranes.
In the second stage, the two components turn into new lipids in the small intestine, and blood spreads them to the organs. Excess lipids – which come too much, are deposited in special cells called adipocytes, where their division continues and is manifested as increased subcutaneous fat. To reduce fat, an energy shortage is required. Then lipids pass into the already mentioned mitochondria for degradation and energy generation.
In addition to the overall weight loss diets, there are also specific products that help the fat degradation. One of these is the grapefruit, which helps to reduce blood sugar and insulin, which in turn suppresses appetite. If you drink 150 ml of grapefruit juice with every meal or if you eat half a fruit, you can lose 2 kilograms within two weeks, due to improved metabolism and burned fat.
In this regard, among the other benefits, the consumption of papaya is recommended because of the papain enzyme, and the consumption of pineapple because of the bromelain content. Hot spices are very useful for energy consumption and fat burning, because they boost up the metabolism, they also improve cardiovascular activity and improve the temperature regulation. Raspberries are also recommended for fat burning – they contain a number of enzymes that help the degradation of lipids.
Milk and dairy products can also be consumed, but defatted. They stimulate the production of calcitriol – a hormone that helps cells to lose fat. The list can continue with protein foods that are the basis for muscle formation, and the muscles, as mentioned, burn fat. The most useful foods in this regard are fish, chicken breasts, turkey meat and egg whites. Last but not least, – the water, because you cannot lose weight in a healthy way without enough fluids in the organism. At least, because water deficiency slows down the metabolism.
How to deal successfully with excess fat
When we talk about weight loss, first of all we need to decide which fat we want to get rid of – the subcutaneous, the internal or the so-called problematic. For each type, we need to apply different strategy.
Subcutaneous fat affects the appearance and the figure, so most people want to lose weight because of it. The fat tissue under the skin, however, does not endanger metabolism and health. It accumulates due to irrational nutrition – too much animal fats and fast carbohydrates, as well as sedentary lifestyle. It is recommended to reduce the daily calories by 500-700 kcal, and to combine it with moderate exercises.
We mentioned some positive functions about the internal fat tissue. But when it is increased, it definitely becomes dangerous for the health – there is a high risk to affect the hormonal levels, especially the synthesis of insulin, leptin and cortisol, as well as it can cause mechanical overload of organs such as the intestines, liver, pancreas, etc. In this case, longer cardio exercises should be planned and, of course, – a healthy diet.
The problematic fat tissue accumulates on the back, in the lower abdominal area and sidelong and is generally subcutaneous, but the regular methods for burning subcutanoeus body fat are not effective in this case. This is because sex hormones play a key role for the accumulation of this type of fat. Therefore, there is a visible difference in women and men – estrogen contributes to the accumulation on thighs and breasts, while in men testosterone prevents it. Long-term diets are recommended in this case, including limited consumption of carbohydrates and cardio workout on an empty stomach.
Whichever strategy you choose, you must be aware that in order to lose weight permanently, you have to change a number of habits in terms of nutrition, activities and rest. That’s why it’s a good idea to consult with a specialist who will prepare a complex weight loss plan, as well as he will give you guidances for the future to prevent the kilograms from returning again.