How to lose weight 101

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3 years ago

Hello guys. Today I wanna share with you the basic principle of weight loss. Not going too much into much physiological or metabolic details, but rather explain it in sort of an "economic style".

Let's begin by stating that we human beings need energy to stay alive. That energy we need is measured (for practical issues) in kcal. Other way to put it is saying that we need kcal to survive, as all of our vital functions demand energy (i.e. our heart doesn't pump blood just because he feels like it... in order to do so it's muscles have to contract and that contraction is only viable with adequate levels of ATP, which can only be obtained trough metabolic pathways of the food (kcal) we consume).

In few words: without calories we die. That basic principle is what made our ancestors develop adaptations to prevent death. How? By storing excess energy when not needed. Can you guess what those stores are? Yes... fat tissue.

You could say that fat is our "bank" where we put our savings. Or if you prefer in crypto terms, our wallet haha.

So, here comes the analogy with economy: how does one increases its saving and how does one decreases them?

For you to make your savings grow you gotta earn more than you spend. Of course you can go somewhat technical and start detailing aspects of how to earn more, and techniques on trades or good deals, etc. But in the end the thing is that if you earn the same (or less) than what you spend, there is no way for you to increase your savings.

Let's do some simple math: suppose everyday you gain 1000usd (nice right?). But you also spend 1000usd. That leaves you with a daily balance of 0 (neutral: neither won or lost).

Now, let's say you still gain 1000usd but you have to spend 800usd. That leaves you with a net balance of +200usd, which then can go to your savings, thus increasing them.

The opposite happens when you spend more than you earn. You gain 1000usd a day but spend 1200usd. That 200 extra that you didn't earn in that day have to come from somewhere, your savings, thus decreasing them.

Putting it all together: our fat tissue is our wallet (our savings). It's a survival adaptation that helped our ancestors live through periods of no food-availability. In order for it to increase, we have to eat (earn) more calories (money) than we burn (spend). For it to decrease we have to to de opposite and for our savings to stay relatively the same, we need to eat the same amount we burn.

The above explanation is the basis of the CICO: Calories In-Calories Out. There's a lot of people out there claiming that this system is bulsh**t and that doesn't take into consideration all hormonal and metabolic changes we humans experience. They fail to realize that all of those details are summed up in the "calories out" part of the equation.

Imagine someone saying: "Naah... I don't believe in earning more money than what I spend in order to become rich, that's just a theory". You would say (and you would be right) that that person doesn't know what he is talking about. Well... now translate that thought to people who think calories don't matter :)

Of course one thing is putting it simpler like the above mentioned, and another different thing is trying to put it into practice (it is easier said than done). But we'll leave that for another post.

Bye guys, happy new year!!

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3 years ago