Nutrition Solutions

Weight Loss vs. Fat Loss – Understanding the difference

Weight Loss vs. Fat Loss – Understanding the difference

People tend to default to the terms “weight loss” or “lose weight” when talking about a fitness goal they want to achieve…

But weight loss and fat loss are not one in the same…

And if you want to avoid massive amounts of frustration & disappointment…

It’s important you understand the difference between the two.

On our health and fitness journeys, the progress we see with our body will largely be determined by the percentage of weight loss that is actually fat.

If you’re looking for a leaner, toner, athletic look, the focus needs to be fat loss, not just “weight loss.”

Weight loss can be easily achieved by burning more calories than we consume throughout the day…

But just losing weight doesn’t guarantee your body will look how you want to look once the weight is off.

Without a proper game plan on one’s “weight loss journey”, any reduction of weight is typically a combination of fat AND valuable lean muscle tissue.

This is not an ideal scenario because contrary to popular belief…

When we lose body fat, it’s not just magically replaced with shredded, lean muscle tissue in its place.

Which would be awesome by the way…

If we are dropping fat and not training in accordance with our goals…

Or fueling our bodies with the appropriate nutrition, notably a sufficient daily protein intake…

We will also end up burning lean muscle as previously stated.

This really sucks for 3 primary reasons…

  1. You will have low muscle mass
  2. You will be at higher risk for an undesirable “skinny fat” physique, as well as more susceptible to stretch marks and loose skin.
  3. Your body will have a harder time losing fat past a certain point. (usually continuing to store it in your lower belly, lower back and love handles)

So, obviously when on one’s “weight loss”journey…

We need to make sure to mitigate as much muscle loss as possible while still in a calorie deficit.

By keeping and even adding more lean muscle mass, you will not only have a more aesthetically pleasing body composition…

You’ll also maintain a higher resting metabolic rate

Which is a beautiful thing, because it will lead to significantly better, faster fat loss in the long run!

Your metabolic rate is the amount of energy (calories) your body uses (burns) throughout the day.

Obviously periods of exercise increase our metabolic rate.

But this elevated period of energy (calorie) expenditure will last maybe 40 -90 minutes.

So obviously our resting metabolic rate (the amount of energy the body burns at rest or going through our daily activity) is essentially where the magic happens as it relates to fat loss!

Lean body mass positively influences resting metabolic rate and fat loss perhaps more significantly than any other single factor.

It’s kinda crazy, but the truth is…

The “secret” to accomplishing and sustaining your fat loss goals is actually to build lean muscle!

And what’s the key to building lean muscle mass?

A clean, high protein meal plan.

Obviously weight training is also a huge contributor to adding lean muscle mass…

Weight training is also significantly more effective for fat loss than cardio!

But even if you lifted weights for 2 hours per day, everyday…

If your daily protein intake is not sufficient…

Your body will not be physically able to build muscle, therefore slowing down your ability to lose fat.

Muscle is the most metabolic tissue in the body – and protein feeds our muscles.

So when you consume a serving of protein, say 25-35 grams  (or more) in a single serving…

You supply your body with valuable amino acids (which make up protein) to help preserve lean muscle tissue.

Consuming 25-35 grams of quality protein (or more)  per meal 4-6 times per day allows your muscles to be in a constant state of building and repair.

This requires a lot of energy. (Calorie expenditure)

Why is this important?

Because the body then will use fats and carbohydrates as a primary fuel source. 

So, what’s the best weight loss diet plan that will get the best results with fat loss?

Here are 3 simple, easy to remember rules that you can follow to accomplish your health & fat loss goals…

  1. Consume at least 25-35 grams of a quality protein source at one sitting, 4-6 times per day
  2. Aim to consume 1 gram of protein per pound of lean body mass.

 *If you don’t know what your LBM is, just use 1           gram of protein per pound of your goal weight.

3. For maximum efficiency & convenience, 70% of your protein intake can come from food, 30% from a high quality whey protein supplement

But the most important rule for fat loss to occur…

And it’s crucial you don’t forget about this one..

Is that you absolutely without exception have to be in a calorie deficit – DAILY!

Meaning you have to burn more calories than you consume so that your body taps into and burns stored energy. (body fat)

Another huge benefit of a high protein meal delivery studies show, is high protein meals increase levels of hormones that make you feel full while reducing your levels of the hunger hormone, ghrelin.

This makes it easier to eat less and stay fuller for longer.

So quit overcomplicating things.

High protein meal plans are a life hack.

Not just something for meat heads and bodybuilders!

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