Fat Adaptation and Gene Expression
I've been confused by the following terms as they relate to fat loss and performance: Fat Adaptation and Gene Expression. I understand, simply, that if the body is presented with a low carb diet (i.e. under 150 g carbs, but more like 80 g (I got these numbers from MDA)) that it will eventually "switch" its mechanisms; it will begin to use fat as the primary fuel for energy expenditure. That makes sense.
What doesn't make sense is how one determines whether or not this is happening. Using Fit Day (sporadically) I'm usually around 35% p; 50% fat; 15% carbs; however this fluctuates.
To what degree can one play with these numbers once he or she is "adapted" or expressed appropriately? How easy is it to revert back to a carbohydrate fueled system? Again, how can one tell if this happens?
Like everyone else, I'm interested in maximum muscle retention and development while pursuing low body fat levels. I've got muscle to gain and fat to lose. So, in terms of nutrition, how low should I go in terms of carbohydrates and fats. Correct me if I'm wrong, but those who prescribe to a higher carbohydrate load (i.e., Zoners) seem to have to worry more about macronutrients and precise balances and caloric consumption, while those who eat low carb and are fat adapted tend to have an easier time remaining lean, but what they have to worry about is training capacity. Am I right in this? I guess I'm looking for the "magic number" in terms of carbohydrate consumption that would give one adequate energy but also not enough to sabotage the "fat adapted" model. I hope this clarifies the question. If not, please let me know.
The magic number is determined by YOUR genetics. Thus, you need to play around with it to find out what works best FOR YOU.
I think the most important is to make sure the body often is set to burn stored fat/carbs and not just get calories from the bowel. The more often and the more carbs one eats the more likely gene expression for lipolytic enzymes are shut off.
You can tell the body has reverted back to carbohydrate fueled system when one starts craving carbs.
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