Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Fat Burning vs Sugar Burning

I finally understand why it is so hard to lose weight, at my age.

Here is a good article by Jenni and Nathan Oakes of Burst Club

They explain why HIIT(High Intensity Interval Training) is so effective for losing weight, fat, and toning up, and it even can assist with increases in muscle size and definition.

Nathan & Jenni Oakes – BURST CLUB
Fat burning is a topic that gets much coverage from mainstream media. However, for all of the gimmicks and headlines claiming to turn the body into a fat-burning machine, the reality is that we are in the midst of an ever-growing obesity epidemic. What we are currently doing clearly is not working. This is due in part to the general population being unaware of the factors that influence the body’s ability to burn fat. The body can do one of two things with fat - burn it or store it.
Someone who primarily burns fat for fuel during the day is termed a "fat burner;" this is ideal.
On the other hand, a "sugar burner" is one who burns sugars for energy during the day.
The body responds to a sugar burner by storing fat. Herein lies the problem: far too many of us are primarily burning sugars throughout the day, which is a prime reason why our bodies are accumulating excess fat!
Several factors influence whether an individual is either a “fat burner” or a “sugar burner.” We are going to focus primarily on two opposite types of exercise - cardio (aerobic) and burst training (anaerobic), and how exercise type can largely determine which type "burner" you will be.
The "Fat-Burning Zone" Myth Unraveled
Research shows that when you do traditional cardio or aerobic exercise (LILD), hormones are released that signal the body to burn fat for fuel. Have you ever been told to get into your “Fat Burning Zone?" This target zone is so widely recommended that even fitness equipment like treadmills and elliptical machines are labeled accordingly. Although being in your fat burning zone for 30-45 minutes may sound like a great thing, science has proven that, under the proper circumstances, our bodies actually have the ability to burn fat for hours following exercise! Let’s take a step back from traditional thinking about our “fat burning zone” and look at the overall picture that has been painted for us through the extensive research of exercise physiologists.
While it is true that you burn fat during a cardio workout, there is a costly downside. Whatever the body burns for fuel during a workout, the opposite will then be burned following a workout. Furthermore, after a workout, the body responds by storing the fuel (fat or sugar) that was burned during the workout in order to refuel the tank (1).
Simply put, when it comes to:
Burning : Whatever you burn during a workout, the body responds by burning the opposite following (i.e. if you burn fat during, you will burn sugars later; if you burn sugar during, you will burn fat later)
Storing : Whatever you burn during a workout, the body responds by primarily storing the same following (i.e. if you burn fat during, you will store fat later; if you burn sugar during, you will store sugar later)
Traditional cardio training causes the body to respond by burning fat during exercise. The body has an innate memory which tells it to “hang on to” the fuel it will need to prepare it for the next bout of exercise. In other words, burning fat during a cardio-type workout signals the body to respond by storing fat and burning sugar for hours afterward in order to prepare for future similar workouts. This type of person is termed a “sugar-burner” because their primary source of fuel throughout the day is sugar, while the body conversely hangs on to fat.
Regardless of the hours spent doing aerobic activity, "sugar burners" may often feel that they are not getting very far in their noble efforts to lose weight. This is because their long-duration workouts are actually working against the very thing they are trying to accomplish! Sugar, or glucose, is stored as glycogen in the muscles to be used as fuel. When the body is primarily in a sugar-burning state, it is constantly drawing stored sugar from the muscles. Using up your sugar stores causes muscle breakdown as opposed to building lean muscle (2). Lean muscle is vital to having a high metabolism (3). If one ever desires to see their metabolism restored to properly burn fat, it is essential to stop the cycle caused by being a sugar burner.
In comparison to cardio training, burst or sprint training triggers the body to burn sugars for fuel during exercise, and then burn fat afterwards. With any high intensity, anaerobic type activity, the body does not have time to get into fat stores for fuel. It needs quick energy to fuel the workout, thus it draws upon sugar stores. Those who burst train are termed “fat burners” because their bodies are in a state of fat burning for the majority of the day due to how the body responds to this type of exercise. One study showed that only after short, intense bouts of exercise is the body able to draw upon stored fat for fuel (4).
When scientists compared traditional cardio (30-60 minutes aerobic exercise) to sprint training (20-60 second anaerobic sprints) they found burst training burned the same calories in 1/15th of the time. Scientists also showed that the body will burn fat for up to 24 hours following a burst-style workout (5). Additionally, more lean muscle is built and more calories are burned through burst style training (6-9). This means that you can literally burst for minutes a day, yet burn fat for the rest of the day! I don’t know about you, but I would rather be a “fat burner” for hours, as opposed to only minutes!
In summary, conventional cardio training, which promotes fat burning during a workout, is actually ensuring fat-storing following a workout (“sugar burner”). On the other hand, burst training requires that you burn sugars during your workout, thus ensuring fat-burning afterwards (“fat burner”).
So if you desire to stop storing fat and become a lean, mean, fat-burning machine, consider the research that proves adding burst training into your routine will re-program your body to burn fat throughout the day!
Remember, in order to build lean muscle and achieve optimal fat loss, exercise should work for you rather than against you!!
1. Teta, J & K; Hormonal Weight Loss: Is There Such a Thing as the Metabolic Affect: 1
2. Vollestad, N.K. et al. Glycogen breakdown in different human muscle fibre types during exhaustive exercise of short duration. Acta. Physiol. Scand. 1992; 144(2): 135-141.
3. Cunningham JJ. Am J Clin Nutr. 1980 Nov;33(11):2372-4
4. Romijn, J.A. et al. Regulation of endogenous fat and carbohydrate metabolism in relation to exercise intensity and duration. Am. J. Physiol. 1993; 265(3 Pt 1): E380-E391.
5. Journal Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise; Burst Training Burns Fat for 24 Hours;1996
6. Brockman, L. et al. Oxygen uptake during recovery from intense intermittent running and prolonged walking. J. Sports Med. Phys. Fitness. 1993; 33(4): 330-336.
7. Bahr, R. et al. Effect of supramaximal exercise on excess postexercise O2 consumption. Med. Sci. Sports Exerc. 1992; 24(1): 66-71.
8. Bahr, R. et al. Effect of intensity of exercise on excess postexercise O2 consumption. Metabolism. 1991; 40(8): 836-841.
9. Broeder, C.E. et al. The metabolic consequences of low and moderate intensity exercise with or without feeding in lean and borderline obese males. Int. J. Obesity. 1991; 15: 95-104.


It's actually important to burn both fats and sugar in our body. Thanks a lot for sharing that information.

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