How to Lose Fat 101: Understanding the Basics

Updated: Aug 6, 2020

QUOTE TO REMEMBER:

"There is no gizmo, gadget, device, supplement, special beverage, or celebrity that can help you lose weight if you don’t adhere to the scientifically grounded, fundamental principles of weight loss. Leaning out requires dedication and hard work, but it's not rocket science"


KEY TAKE-AWAYS:

  • Losing weight is not always the same as losing fat

  • Eat fewer calories than you expend

  • Prioritize protein in your diet

  • Resistance training is crucial


Defining Body Composition



The term ‘weight loss’ gets thrown around a lot but few people are able to discern the difference between ‘weight loss’ and ‘fat loss’. That is where this important concept of body composition comes into play. ‘Body composition' is a term that describes the ratio of a person's fat mass to their lean mass. Clinically, "lean mass" includes skeletal muscle, organs, bones, and other internal structures. In the context of weight loss, lean mass is refers specifically to muscle mass.

Healthier bodies are almost always those with a better body composition, meaning they contain a smaller percentage of fat mass compared to lean mass. Having a higher percentage of muscle allows the human body to be more functional and able to handle activities of daily living (ADLs), not to mention burning more calories at rest. When body composition declines, typically so does overall fitness and simple ADLs can become very taxing. It should not be hard to walk up stairs or carry groceries!


Improving your body composition can be done in two ways then: increase your muscle mass (without gaining fat) or decrease your fat mass (without losing muscle). For most people who truly NEED to improve their body composition, fat loss should usually be the higher priority.


A Harsh Truth


There is great deal of confusion in the general public when it comes to fat loss and a lot of that comes from the crazy B.S. that is spewed by the media. It’s easy to want to believe that you can lose weight with 10 minutes of exercise per day and a supplement regimen. But know this, and know this well: there is no gizmo, gadget, device, supplement, special beverage, or celebrity that can help you lose weight if you don’t adhere to the scientifically grounded, fundamental principles of weight loss. Leaning out requires dedication and hard work, but it's not rocket science.


Fundamental Principles of Fat Loss

Energy Balance