Written by Jamie Bantleman
Fats Don’t Make You Fat – True or False
Its becoming something that just rolls off the tongue of any personal trainer or diet coach now a days; “Fats don’t make you fat”. In this latest article I will be presenting to you the reasons as to why this is being told to the public and why we need to be careful with the advise that we are feeding to our clients and the general fitness world.
Take a typical person who doesn’t consciously watch or control their diet, invariably this person will be consuming a high glycemic load, in other words, eating a high sugar diet. This may be through cereals, bread, oats and other grains with fruit juices and cordials at breakfast, then lunches and evening meals consisting of pasta, rice, potatoes etc and snacking on fruits, sweets, crisps, cereal bars and chocolates throughout the day.
All of these types of foods are very high in carbohydrates and this macronutrient breaks down into its simplest form as sugar. Therefore, when this type of client comes to me with a goal of fat loss or any other form of health improvement, I will tell them that what is currently the issue is that there is simply too much sugar in the diet and the body will not be utilising it as efficiently and effectively as it would if you were minimising the sugar intake and consuming a higher level of essential fatty acids, otherwise knows as fats. The following question nearly always follows by:
“BUT! Will eating fat not make me even fatter?!”
Now, the following the answer to this may set the precedent for the rest of your relationship with this particular client and can be the start of a slippy slope if answered incorrectly.
“No, Fats don’t make you fat, sugar does”
Half of this is true, sugar does make us fat, this is down to the insulin sensitivity decreasing by how much insulin your body is consuming. “Insulin Sensitivity is a function of how well your body can handle glucose (blood sugar) through insulin secretion. Insulin is secreted from an organ called the pancreas in response to elevating blood sugar, and the less insulin that is needed to get the job done is how sensitive you are to insulin.”
However, fats can make us fat too, so can protein. Shocked? Don’t be, its very simple, we all have our own specific basil metabolic rate where we can find our calorie expenditure in a day to day situation. If this figure, for example, came out at 3000 calories per day of expenditure, then eating 4000 calories of ‘healthy’ protein and fats will still make you increase in body weight, while health wouldn’t suffer as much as it would if you ate those 4000 calories in junk food and sugar it would still see you increase in weight. Therefore we must begin to educate the public on how to manage your diet in terms of calorie restrictions, macronutrients and sports nutrition (supplementation).
The 3 key points to the formulation of an intelligent nutritional protocol for fat loss:
#1 Find your Basil Metabolic Rate figure and create a small deficit of 500 calories.
#2 Set a macronutrient percentage that is applicable to that of someone aiming to lose body fat or weight. This can be 40% Protein, 40% Fat and 20% Carbohydrate.
#3 Ensure you are eating at the right time; breaking the fast from the night before as early as you can upon waking, regular food throughout the day to ensure calorie requirements are met, post workout nutrition should use 10% of your daily carbohydrate allowance with the other 10% in your last meal to help improve sleep quality.