Burning Fat is not the same as Losing Fat

Burning Fat is not the same as Losing Fat

Burning Fat is not the same as Losing Fat. They’re two different concepts and it can be misleading when we see headlines with one or the other concept.

They can also lead to unhealthy diets aimed at creating an excessive calorie deficit for weight loss.

This can generate not only confusion but an unwanted effect, losing muscle mass and not so much losing fat mass.

We’ve already looked at body composition on this blog, which is what we should focus on when we want to lose fat but maintain optimal muscle mass.

Understanding the importance exercise and physical activity is key to the fat loss process.

One of the main goals of people who start exercising is to “lose weight”.

Exercises to lose fat

But as we mentioned, the important thing is focussing on burning fat.

But why? Well, because burning fat isn’t the same as losing fat.

What’s the difference between burning and oxidising fat?

Fat is a fundamental energy source for our body in all activity that requires oxygen and is carried out at low to moderate intensities (although it also participates to a lesser degree in high intensity activities).

As such, when we “burn fat”, we’re using it as an energy source, normally by doing long-lasting, low-moderate intensity activities: walking, running at a very aerobic pace, cycling, dancing, the functioning of our own organ systems, etc.

To “burn body fat”, we need different tools: nutrition, appropriate exercise and rest are all essential.

So, why are burning fat and losing fat not the same thing?

Well, because one thing refers to fat as an energy and metabolic resource, and the other refers to a process in which the objective is to reduce your fat mass percentage.

What should you do if you want to lose weight?

When we want to lose weight, it’s important we focus on these two key aspects:

  1. Losing fat percentage
  2. Maintaining or avoiding losing muscle mass.

On the one hand, reducing your calorie intake will establish a calorie defecit.

Healthy diet

That’s to say, consuming a slightly lower amount of calories than we burn daily with our physical activity and training.

Sugar-rich foods should be avoided to ensure a healthier diet and achieve fat loss and muscle gain, as they don’t provide any nutrients; avoid ice cream, sweets, cakes and soft drinks.

You should also avoid foods that contain saturated fat, as well as fried foods: sausages, cold cuts, or any battered food. Not to mention alcoholic drinks, which can affect muscle growth.

For the calorie deficit, if our diet is rich and healthy, we can also achieve it by increasing our daily activity: walking more, outdoor activities, walks after meals…

Our exercise and training routine will also helps us increase our energy expenditure.

Strength training

On top of that, however, increasing the amount of strength training we do will ensure your muscle mass isn’t affected by the fat loss, improving your overall body composition.

Science has shown that the muscle, apart from the aesthetic aspect, is an endocrine organ: it regulates the metabolic and hormonal system, so working on strength will help with body recomposition, fat loss and maintaining an optimal energy expenditure base.

Do you lose weight by losing fat or muscle?

If we’re only talking about weight loss, it can decrease due to both:

You can lose weight due to a decrease in fat mass as well as a decrease in muscle mass.[/

How do you lose fat and gain or maintain muscle mass?

To lose fat while also maintaining muscle mass or avoiding its decrease, the best thing to do is:

  • Readjust the macronutrients of your daily nutrition, giving priority to protein: it will help you maintain muscle mass and also has a satiating power.
  • Eliminate all foods rich in saturated fats, batter, refined flours, ultra-processed products and those with added sugars: remove these unhealthy foods from your diet and you’ll notice big changes in a short space of time, as well as a sharp decrease in mild inflammation.
  • Maintain regular and high levels of daily physical activity.
  • Introduce strength training into your routine at least 3 times a week.
  • Do HIIT workouts : these help maintain a high post-exercise energy state and don’t require long hours of cardio.

Nutritional supplements

Normally, applying our recommendations on balanced diets along with daily physical activity is enough to reduce fat and increase muscle mass.

Nevertheless, dietary supplements can sometimes be a useful resource, giving you an extra boost to achieve your goals, always on the advice of a doctor or nutritionist.

Among the best-rated supplements, whey protein is commonly made from cow’s milk whey and helps to increase strength in physical performance. You can learn more about supplements on our website: HSNstore.eu.

Related Entries

  • NEAT is non-exercise related activity. Want to learn about its importance for fat loss? Click here.
  • Balanced Diet? We tell you everything you need to know in this post.
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About Isabel del Barrio
Isabel del Barrio
Isabel del Barrio really loves sport, demonstrating it from a very young age and sharing her enthusiasm and knowledge to this day
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