Weight Loss And The Perfect Body
You’ve heard of it. Maybe you have a friend who’s doing it. We all do it eventually.
Of course I’m talking about weight loss. The gay man’s eternal search for the perfect body. It’s right up there with the search for the perfect boyfriend. Conventional gay wisdom holds that one leads to the other, right? Well let’s hold off on that theory and focus on the latest weight loss research.
Intermittent Fasting has become quite popular over the last several years. Basically, it’s about restricting your calories for a period of time and then returning to your normal way of eating.
It’s been shown to provide lots of health benefits like weight loss, reduce blood pressure, cancer prevention, reduced heart disease risk, and lower cholesterol.
Now those benefits all sound great. Who wouldn’t want all those upsides to fasting?
How Mice Can Help You Lose Weight… (Well, Actually Mice Research)
Problem was, researchers never knew WHY those benefits were associated with fasting. A new study published in the journal Cell Research looks at how this process works and why it can boost your fat loss.
Researchers put mice on a fasting regimen for 16 weeks. The mice were fed a normal diet for 2 days and then no food at all for 1 day. At the end of the study, the mice that were part of the intermittent fasting group weighed less than the control group, but had eaten the same amount of food.
Weight loss wasn’t the only benefit researchers noticed. In mice that were previously obese, blood sugar levels and liver metabolism improved after just 6 weeks.
The study suggests that intermittent fasting stimulates anti-inflammatory cells which triggers an increase in production of a blood vessel growth factor, which in turn lead the body to burn more fat cells.
Good Fat vs. Bad Fat
Let’s start with looking at fat. Yes, the nemesis of us all!!
Fat is important… it stores energy and releases it when we have energy deficits (that occurs when we are not eating or doing something strenuous).
There are actually 2 types of fat. White fat and brown fat.
White fat is the regular old fat we all know and just keeps us warm by insulating our bodies from the cold. It doesn’t burn calories. It’s the largest energy reserve in the body.
Brown fat, on the other hand, is a winner! Brown fat burns calories to generate heat and keep our bodies warm. ( A sexy man can do that too, btw…)
Babies and all hibernating animals all have brown fat. Researchers thought that as adults, humans had no brown fat… that we lose it entirely. However, recently they discovered that adults have small amounts of brown fat. We have it in different places and it’s hard to find because the brown fat cells are mixed in among the white fat.
So how do we increase brown fat?
- Turn the thermostat down – cold weather makes the brown fat more active and may even cause new brown fat cells to grow.
- Exercise – It can convert white fat into brown fat
- Get Good Sleep – Melatonin production influences the creation of brown fat cells.
So, if we increase the brown fat, which burns more calories, we will lose weight. Awesome!!
Intermittent Fasting And Weight Loss
Now you understand the difference between white fat and brown. What the research that just came out found, is that intermittent fasting caused brown fat cells to emerge within white fat just like cold weather and exercise did. This resulted in a decrease of overall fat in the body.
Remember that brown fat is more efficient in burning calories to produce heat. It promotes weight loss because it increases your body’s calorie burn.
It’s also important to note that the mice that were part the intermittent fasting group, had the same amount of calories as the mice who did not fast over the course of the study. So the weight loss was not because of less calories consumed… it was the intermittent fasting and the increased brown fat that caused the weight loss. Fasting is NOT about starving yourself!
Your Own Weight Loss Story
Losing weight is personal journey. Intermittent fasting is just one weapon in the fight against the bulge. It’s like finding a man…. Everyone has their own idea of what’s sexy and works for them!
If you’re interested in intermittent fasting as an option (and there’s more than one way to go about it), check out our Top 6 Methods For Fasting. Or maybe CLA and Apple Cider Vinegar will work for you.
The point is that you have to find out what works for you, your body, and your lifestyle!