How to tell if you are losing muscle mass or fat. When you are on a diet, seeing the number on the scales decrease is one of the things that can give you great satisfaction. However, without wanting to disappoint you, you should know that many people lose a significant amount of muscle mass along with fat.
The problem, in this case, is that you need muscle mass to perform daily activities (eg transporting groceries from the supermarket), but also because your muscles ensure a higher basal metabolism (the calories you burn when you are not doing anything at all). nothing) from fat. In short, when your muscle mass decreases, your metabolism decreases.
So here are some simple ways to find out if your weight loss comes from your muscle mass or fat.
When you do not do muscle training
Many people avoid strength training because they think the weights are getting fatter. In reality, however, weights are not only not fattening, as is commonly believed, but they are also an important ally in your effort to lose weight. Muscle-strengthening exercises boost metabolism because they are directly related to muscle mass. And the more muscle mass you have, the higher your metabolic rate.
If you do a lot of aerobic exercises, but no muscle training at all, there is a chance that you will lose 50% muscle mass and 50% fat (along with water).
So to maintain your muscle mass, be sure to include weights in your workouts, 2 times a week, and target all major muscle groups (eg legs, back, chest). It is also important to make sure that your diet includes a sufficient amount of protein, which not only helps increase muscle mass but also keeps you full for longer, thus doubly enhancing your weight loss.
When you lose weight fast
If you see your weight falling within a few days, you are more likely to have lost fluids, which is not necessarily a bad thing, as it may encourage you, but it should by no means be your goal. Of course, if you follow a deprivation diet for 1 week and lose 3 kilos, keep in mind that this loss comes mainly from fluids and is temporary.
When your clothes fit you better
By observing how your clothes fit, you can understand the change in your body, even if the number on the scales remains constant. Do not necessarily wait for your favorite pants to widen. It may just fit better in your body.
When you combine regular weight training with a balanced diet you can lose fat while increasing your muscle mass, which should be your goal when trying to lose weight. This is a remarkable change in the way your body looks (and of course a positive change in your state of health), which is not always reflected in the number you see on the scales.
When you have no energy
When you do not get enough protein in your diet and you lose weight at the same time, you are probably losing muscle mass, which results in a lack of energy. If you are constantly tired or if you are exhausted from activities that you were not used to before, it is a sign that you may be having problems.
Start by adding protein to your diet (eat lean meat, fish, eggs, poultry, legumes, buckwheat, oats) and if you do not see a difference in your energy levels, consult a specialist.
How To Find Out If You Are Losing Fat
The most reliable way to find out what percentage of fat you are losing is to get fat measured by an accredited nutritionist. With its help you will be able to lose weight, increasing fat loss, and reducing muscle mass loss.
Keep in mind that fat scales are an unreliable method of measuring body fat percentage, since even with the best scales of this type, the margin of error reaches 4%, while with the most economical models it can be significantly higher.
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