Where Does Body Fat Go When You Burn It?


What happens to body fat when you lose weight? Does it go to the body fat paradise or burn in calories hell?

The human body stores additional calories in the fat cells as triglycerides, which in turn are made up of three fatty acids linked to a common glycerol atom. So the main elements are carbon, hydrogen and oxygen.

By burning fat, we understand their decomposition into the energy release cell. Without going into too detailed details, the fat burning process is largely produced by decomposing fatty acids by certain enzymes and producing ATP molecules. ATP is the energy source at the cell level. This decomposition will result in carbon dioxide water and heat.

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10 kilograms of fat result in 8.4 kg of carbon dioxide and 1.6 kg of water. Carbon dioxide is eliminated by breathing and water through urine sweating and other body fluids. The conclusion is that the main fat excretory organ is the lungs.
However, for this to happen, it is not enough to breathe faster, this would only lead to hyperventilation, which in turn can lead to dizziness, palpitations and loss of consciousness.

To burn fat, it is still necessary to exercise physically or to have a calorie deficit. But this information complements some corners of the picture. On the one hand, we can now also explain how the indirect calorimetry method works to measure energy consumption.

On the other hand, we understand what it means to accelerate metabolism following intense training. The misunderstanding of this propelled the popularity of cardio training into the world of fat burning.

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The wrong thinking was that if during low-intensity effort the fat is predominantly used as a source of energy, then to weaken it is enough to practice as much time as possible at a low level of intensity. Thus the gyms were invaded by treadmills and elliptical bikes with TVs in front of them.

The omitted aspect is that after cardio training, metabolism does not undergo any change when stopping training while in return, after intensive HIIT or strength training follows 24-48 hours of acceleration of the metabolic rate. So over time an intense workout can be more effective in burning fat than a long cardio workout. Another aspect omitted is that intense training stimulates muscle mass construction while a long cardio workout leads to muscle mass catabolism. Moreover, intensive training quickly empties glycogen deposits and gives us some kind of buffer when we consume carbohydrates. Which will be stored primarily in larger muscles.

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As a conclusion, I can not say that this information is going to change what we have been doing so far but gives us a clearer understanding of all the processes.