So you have been eating clean and working out like a machine and you have made good progress in losing weight.
Your clothes do fit looser, so you must have rid yourself of some mass but have you ever wondered did you REALLY lose it? Where did it go exactly?
There are three distinct scientific laws that will help shed some light on what exactly happens to fat lost and where it goes.
The first is called the Law of Conservation of Mass discovered by Antoine Lavoisier. This law states that matter is neither created nor destroyed.
The second law is called the Law of Conservation of Energy or now better known as the First Law of Thermodynamics discovered by Julius Robert Mayer. This law states that energy is neither created nor destroyed.
The third law is the Law of Conservation of Mass-Energy discovered by Albert Einstein. This law states that the total amount of mass and energy in the universe is constant.
Now that you have an idea of the laws that govern fat and weight loss, let me break it down into simple terms.
Do you really LOSE fat?
As you probably are already aware, in order to lose weight you must have an energy deficit from reducing calories and increasing in expenditure. While it is a bit more complex than that, such as hormones, body composition, food selection and meal macro balance, this basic rule is a pretty good standard to go by for the most part. In regards to fat, this is partially predetermined from birth and you pretty much reach a point from your childhood to adulthood where your fat cell amount is reached. But that is not to say that these fat cells cannot grow, because they can and do if you let them.
The bigger your waistline gets is not due to an addition of fat cells per se but an increase in size. The fat or adipose tissue that you lose is not actually lost, it is simply converted to another form that can be used or disposed – which is where the above laws come into play. When we eat more calories than we need, our bodies store these fat molecules for later use. When we increase our energy output, our bodies release the stored molecules to fuel our basic and active needs and the fat cells shrink.
A basic understanding of the laws above article, is there is no real loss when a deficit is created, but
There are a slew of chemical reactions that occur and transform the fat to either usable energy in the body or break it down and expel the fat from the body in several ways.
Mass or matter is simply transformed to something else. Fat loss does not REALLY happen, but fat cell shrinkage does, and technically even the molecules that are lost from the cells that did shrink have not really disappeared – they just turned into something else like sweat. Understanding the concept that your fat never really leaves you will help you to stay on track in your nutrition and training.