Becoming Fat Adaptive: How and Why

Kyle Collinsworth

Becoming Fat Adaptive

Questions I intend on answering for you guys:

  • What is fat adaptive?
  • How to become fat adaptive?
  • What does fat adaptive mean for you?
  • How to know if you’ve become fat adaptive?

Let’s get started!!

What is Fat Adaptive?

Simple put fat adaptive means you can use ketones and fatty acids for your energy source. This allows you to use stored body fat for energy, which allows you to burn more fat and better lose weight. Fat adaptive is your ability to convert fat into energy and not be dependent on the steady dose of carbs (glucose) for energy.

For example, “Imagine a fairly lean, 200-pound hunter-gatherer with 10% body fat. Do the math. That’s 20 pounds of fat or over 80,000 calories he’s carrying around” (more info)

Fat adaptive isn’t a new concept for our genes. Our ancestors relied on the 80,000 or so calories from the 10% or so body fat to be able to dip into for energy. Food wasn’t a guarantee and they needed to be able to go to that storage for energy like a bear does in hibernation. Unfortunately for us our bodies still operate the same way with the feast or famine in mind. However for some in our modern world the famine part rarely happens. When we eat loads of food (especially processed or junk food) our insulin spikes and we begin to store the food as fat preparing for the day we may enter famine mode. For most, famine never happens. With the lack of famine mode we begin to overwork our body and overtime some people even become insulin resistant. The constant spiking of insulin and storing the food as fat puts our health at risk and increases our body fat and weight leading us to obesity.

What does fat adaptive mean for you

  • Fat adaptive means you can and do go longer between meals without eating.

When we aren’t fat adaptive we are carb dependent relying on the constant dose of glucose (carbs) for our energy. Being carb dependent we continually spike our insulin and store it as fat making us perpetually hungry and relying on that next meal for our energy, never dipping into our fat storage for energy. A recipe for gaining weight and becoming insulin resistant.

  • You can better utilize the fat you eat for energy throughout your day and workouts.

Fat adaptive allows you to keep that steady energy throughout the day and not need food for an energy boost. You don’t go from a full fuel tank of gas to empty during your day. The tank may lower, but not to empty. The healthy fats you eat will also better do what they are suppose to do... provide steady energy.

  • You consistently have a fuel source to tap into.

Even with longer periods of no food throughout your day you have an energy source to dip into. This is way fat adaptive people don’t’ get cranky when they haven’t eaten for a little while.

  • You can burn fat while exercising

You can get a lot more benefits during your workouts by tapping into that fat for energy and burning it. The less fat means the less excessive weight on your body. This is why I recommend working out in the mornings while still intermittent fasting. This will allow you to better tap into your fat source for energy and more efficiently burn fat during your workout.

How can you know if you’re fat adaptive?

Becoming fat adaptive can take several days and sometimes weeks. You will better know you are fat adaptive based on these questions.

  1. Can you workout without eating in the morning?
  2. Can you go 3 hours without having to eat?
  3. Can you skip a meal without becoming hangry or running on a low tank of gas.
  4. Can you exercise without having to carb load?
  5. Has the headaches and lightheaded feeling gone away during breaks of no food or during exercise?

These questions will be your best compass of knowing whether or not you’ve landed in the direction of becoming fat adaptive.

How to become fat adaptive

  • Eat a low carb diet and more healthy fats

Keep vegetables, clean protein sources, and healthy fats the main source of your diet. Avoid sugar, refined carbs, and processed foods. Stick to the one ingredient foods and avoid the refined carbs.

  • Do daily intermittent fasting.

From your last meal of the day and your first meal of the next day try to put a 14-16 hour gap. Only have water during this time. Refer here for more info on fasting.

  • Exercise daily

To maximize this try to exercise while still on your intermittent fast. This is best in the morning towards the end of your fast. This will better help you tap into your fat source for energy and burn more fat. I would recommend doing H.I.I.T workouts that are short, but impactful and create a great sweat.

  • Ditch the sodas and stick to water

Keep water as your primary source of hydration. Can always and should drink water during your Intermittent fasts.

From personal experience I can say this method worked for me. The summer I stuck to this I had the most muscle mass and lowest body fat i’ve ever had. I got really shredded and toned! is hard to tap into and you can’t fake becoming fat adaptive. You either are or you aren’t.. no faking it. Remember it takes time to get into a fat adaptive state as well.

Would love to hear your thoughts and experiences on becoming fat adaptive!

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