The Survival Of The Fattest

the survival of the fattest

June 13, 2012 – The Survival Of The Fattest

The most special thing about we humans is our uniqueness. Everyone is uniquely special in their own way.

The adult human has a set number of fat cells, which enlarge to accommodate fat storage. Fat cells are formed at specific times of growth. Such as infancy, adolescence, and during pregnancy. So, later in life when we work to lose or gain weight, we are just shrinking or expanding our existing cells. These cells are in constant state of metabolism.

Our body is the most intricate and complex machine ever designed. It is programmed to protect you in every way possible, no matter what you do, and it cares more about your well-being  and survival than about how thin you are. Your body doesn’t give a hoot what our society says the standard should be. It isn’t a bit worried about that cellulite on your thighs or your expanding waistline. In fact, it’s probably quite happy because a nice storage of reserved fuel is available in case of famine (or a self-imposed starvation diet).

In my little research, I have come to agree that among others, there are five major fat burning factors. So boosting and sustaining a strong metabolism is influenced by physiological  factors. Two are out of your control—gender and genetics. The rest are up to you!

Top Five Fat Burning Factors

The five fat burning factors are:

1. Gender


3. Exercise/activity

4. Nutrition

5. Muscle maintenance .

Let’s take a closer look at each one.


God delivered a blue print stamped male or female. That’s just the way it is; we may as well celebrate it. And the inherent differences in men and women influence our fat burning and storing  capabilities .

Women were designed for a specific purpose. From a purely physical standpoint, women  were first and foremost designed to support another life. Our gender has a direct influence on our hormones, which tell all our body system just how prepared we are for that specific mission, desired or not. From puberty on, our internal chemistry is working based on this presumption, month after month after month.

The hormones involved in this process stimulate our fat cells to work like mighty soldiers to ensure we never run short of fuel. The female body wants to know that it’s capable to carry  or nurture an infant. That’s why some adolescent girls take so long to begin menstruation. If their body fat percentage is too low,  their body is not in a position to support a child, so they don’t ovulate. In the same way, when women become too lean through too much exercise, stress, or dieting, their periods may stop.

What an incredible machine!

If you think about it, the female body must be an excellent fat storing machine to ensure the perpetuation of life. If you store fat well, your body is doing a great job. Now, that doesn’t mean we want to store too much extra fat, but it is a natural and healthy process when not taken to the extreme. And that is why it generally is more difficult  for women to have the body our culture promotes.

Our specific gender affects the two key enzymes that play a role in fat metabolism . They include the lipogenic(fat storing enzyme) and lipolitic(fat burning enzyme). One is more dominant in men while the other is more dominant in women. To be precise the lipogenic is more in women and it is the fat storing enzyme . The men have more of the lipolitic enzymes which is the fat burning enzyme. That is why men burn fat more rapidly than women. Have you ever noticed that when a man decides to work on himself in order to lose weight especially in the waist region, all he has to do is cut down a little on calories or just improve on exercise? It doesn’t seem fair but that’s the way it is.


Our genetic blueprint is predetermined before we are even born. If your directions read “stop growing  at five foot two,” nothing you can do  will make you five foot seven. Similarly, if your blueprint reads “long arms”  or “short legs” or ” a gymnast’s body” or “fashion model’s body” . . . That’s the way  it is. So there are a few things we need to accept and celebrate . The good news  is that we have incredible influence in making our specific body type it’s very best!

I speak with many women who are frustrated because they work so hard on their nutrition  and exercise programmes and still see fat on their bodies . The reality is they may always see some fat in natural areas like the hips, buttocks or thighs. How much will depend on the fat-fighting factors within their control.

Keep in mind that your body will respond best to moderate and consistent change. You have control over what you eat and how much you move, and these choices and behaviours will influence how you burn fat much more significantly than gender or genetics


The best way to burn off those stubborn fats is to move, move and move. When we engage in activities such as walking, biking, swimming, or even dancing, we significantly increase the amount of fat being burned for fuel. These type of activities are considered aerobic because we are able to sustain them for a long period of time without  running out of sufficient oxygen.

When we are at rest or are moving sporadically , the caloric demands on our bodies will be minimal. An average sized woman burns about one to two calories per minute; a man about two to four. In a resting or moderately sedentary state. It’s easy for the body to convert glycogen  into glucose at a sufficient rate.

But when the body starts to move aerobically, it gets a little concerned that it may run out of glycogen, it’s preferred fuel source.

To conserve glycogen, the body tells the fat cells to start releasing their stored fuel; now the body is ready to sustain aerobic activity. The percentage of fat burned begins to increase steadily from about 5% to over 50% in the first 30 minutes of aerobic activity, and this will continue throughout the aerobic workout. It’s easy to see that the most efficient and healthy way to access stored body fat is through frequent aerobic exercise especially at intervals of thirty minutes or more.

Therefore,  we need to make a conscious effort to get our bodies moving. For some, that means exercise. From my perspective, the “E” word represents a very specific activity designed to work the body for an intended result.