Metabolism, Nutrition for Life

Where does Fat go when you lose it?

Given that obesity is one of the major public health concerns worldwide, many people are looking to lose fat. At our clinic Nutrition for Life, we have helped thousands of people to sustainably approach weight loss and to reclaim their full health potential. But still, despite the push on regaining a healthy weight range, some basics of weight / fat loss remain confusing.

So in this blog we will describe, how weight/ fat loss happens and where does it actually go?

What happens to body fat when you shed kg’s?  — do you sweat it out, pee it out or breathe it out? The answer is yes, yes and yes.

How on earth does this happen? “It helps to understand that our bodies are designed to store excess energy in fat cells,” says endocrinologist Bartolome Burguera, MD, PhD.

If you’re weight it means you’re taking in more energy (calorie units of energy) than you’re using.

“The extra energy is stored in adipose tissue all around your body in the form of triglycerides,” says Dr. Burguera. Smaller amounts of energy are stored in your liver and muscles as glycogen.

How does your body use energy? In more ways than you’d think:

  • When you’re resting. Your heart needs energy to pump, your lungs to breathe and your brain to think. (That’s your basal metabolism.)
  • When you’re active. Your muscles need energy whether you’re only getting up from a chair or running a marathon.
  • When you’re eating. Your digestive system needs energy to break down and store food.
What happens to body fat when you diet?

When you shift body weight, you aim to take in fewer calories than your body needs. Because of this deficit, your body turns to fat reserves for energy.

Your body must dispose of fat deposits through a series of complicated metabolic pathways.

The by products of fat metabolism leave your body:

  • As water, through your skin (when you sweat) and your kidneys (when you urinate).
  • As carbon dioxide, through your lungs (when you breathe out).

“Meanwhile, fat breakdown liberates energy for biological functions and physical activity,” Dr. Burguera says. “It also generates heat, which keeps body temperatures normal.”

What happens to body fat when you exercise?

Your muscles first burn through stored glycogen for energy. “After about 30 to 60 minutes of aerobic exercise, your body starts burning mainly fat,” says Dr. Burguera. (If you’re exercising moderately, this takes about an hour.)

Experts recommend at least 30 minutes of cardio two to three times a week in combination with dietary changes is an ideal way to really make progress with fat loss goals.

They also recommend weightlifting and resistance training. Increasing muscle mass may help you burn more calories and raise your basic metabolic rate.

Exercise also increases your respiratory rate, so more CO2 leaves your body when you work out.


Fat Cell 

Why we need fat cells?
We need fat cells to help us store some energy away for later use, this is important for our life to exist and fuel needs.

When are fat cells not reasonable for our bodies?
The simple answer to this is when we have far more fat cells than our body needs for both immediate and later use.
The body expands its fat cells beyond a reasonable level if we provide it with more energy value (from calories) than we exert via energy expenditure. Then if the excess fat cell count becomes even greater, fat cells are deposited around vital organs such as our liver.
Historically having ample stored energy via fat cells, worked well for us humans. But these days with an abundance of food, convenient options, and technology making things a lot easier for us NOT to move – we have become a society in ‘fat cell trouble’.
Also, extra and enlarged fat cells produce abnormal amounts of different hormones. These hormones increase inflammation and will impact our metabolism (it slows down), plus our risk of disease increases.

Want to receive help today for your weight/ fat loss journey? 

Contact our experienced clinic on 0363019096 or email to:

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