Headlines at the grocery store scream about 10 secrets that will blast away fat. Ads on television promise a sleek body in only seven days. Animated product descriptions flash pills and potions that burn fat while you sleep.
In all honesty, if getting skinny was that easy, why isn’t everyone slim already?
The truth of the matter is that the health industry is a business just like any other. They sell quick fixes, yes, but not sustainable fixes. They sell cleanses that only last seven days, not seven years. If you’re actually looking to lose fat for good, the answer lies in your kitchen.
You Are What You Eat
This old adage is as true today as it was when it was coined back in 1826. While you certainly won’t turn into a carrot if you eat too many carrots, you will gain the benefits that come with carrots, including high levels of vitamin A and fiber. Likewise, if you fill your body with too much fat, it shouldn’t be surprising that you then carry around a lot of that fat.
This is why fat loss starts in the kitchen. In fact, you can lose weight without having to try and make time to exercise. All it takes is paying more attention to what you eat and being honest about how much you’re currently eating.
The Body Basics
In order to understand how food affects fat, you need to understand food. In the simplest terms, food is fuel. It gives the body the energy it needs to wake up and do stuff every day. Unlike a car that has a gas tank that has to be filled regularly, humans have the ability to store the energy eaten for later usage. This surplus energy is packed onto the body as fat. It developed as a way for humans to have a better chance at survival. Before food became abundant, there would be periods of famine. The humans that were better at storing food as fat lived through these lean times and passed on their genes, resulting in a body that seems to pack on the pounds if you so much as look at a donut hole.
Foods are broken up into three categories. These are protein, carbohydrates and fats. Protein is used by the body to build muscle. If there is no need to build muscle, the protein is simply flushed out. Carbohydrates are immediate energy. As soon as they enter the body, they are broken down and used for fuel. Fats are partially immediate energy but mainly backup fuel. We need fats for things like hormone regulation but every fat not used for this is then stored away in our bodies. Together, these basic units are known as macronutrients because we need them in large amounts.