Can fat be changed into muscle? This is a very common question in the fitness world. You must understand that fat cannot be turned into muscle as the two are fairly different things. It’s like you want to turn coal into gold, but that’s just not possible!
Fat tissue is bulkier than muscle tissue, so that more space is occupied under the skin. For this reason, a person who weighs say 170 pounds with 45% muscle tissue will appear thinner than someone with the same weight having 25% fat tissue. Muscle tissues consume more calories than fat tissues. If we reconsider the example given above, we see that person with 25% fat tissues has more muscle tissues, so the body consumes more calories to keep it running. Hence, he/she burns more calories as against the counterpart.
If you participate in an exercise program, you will become stronger by building muscles and reduce size by burning fat. It must be noted that these two are very different processes. It is a common misconception to think that fat gets converted into muscle when the person is experiencing body composition changes. Actually, what is happening is body is burning fat as a fuel and muscle is being built. Body fat which is known as adipose tissue and muscle made of protein are two different things.
You can lose fat with cardio training and gain muscle with strength training. The more muscles that your body has, the better it will be when it comes to burning fat. Some people do cardio first for losing weight before they start weight training. Increase in muscle mass is possible, which eventually helps in burning fat.
The reality is that you cannot change one type of tissue to another. You can burn fat and build muscle with exercise that ups your heart rate and makes your body move efficiently. Physiologically, it is not possible to change fat into muscle as they are absolutely different types of body tissues, comprising totally different types of cells.
Fat is made of adipose tissue, whereas muscles are made up of protein. Fat is made of triglycerides and the molecular structure is made of chains of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen. On the other hand, muscle mass is comprised of muscle tissues, water, glycogen and intramuscular fat. It is formed from amino acids chains that contain nitrogen. Nitrogen is stored in the body as muscles.
Fat cannot be directly converted into muscles, as fat does not have nitrogen. There is no existing mechanism in the body for the reconstruction of fat into amino acids. Amino acids cannot be made in the body from anything other than other amino acids.
If you are lifting weights, you can build both muscles and lose fat. However, these should not be viewed as one as a result of another, and should be considered as two separate entities. These two are quite different, structurally as well as chemically. Fat loss and muscle gain can occur simultaneously, but it does not mean that one is caused by the other.
In order to burn fat and build muscles, one must follow a diet and exercise routine. Fat and muscle are composed of completely different components. Thus, the conversion is completely impossible. When one consumes more calories than what is burnt by the body, body stores it as fat, increasing size of fat cells. When fat is being burnt, size of the fat cells is decreased. Muscle building means increasing the size of the muscle cells. For losing fat and building muscle, one can go for strength training, aerobic exercise and healthy diet.
Fat turning into muscle or vice versa is a myth. Yes, you heard that right! Fat can never get converted into muscles. Your muscle is active and works so hard to make you look good, whereas fat just sits there, making you look like an ugly duckling. How can these two be same or get converted into one another? Why is this myth so prevalent? It is a possible question that may raise in your mind. The next paragraph will definitely clear all your doubts.
When a person does training with weight, he will build muscles and for muscles to show, he must lose fat. He will perform cardio, eat healthy to lose weight. He will then reveal a muscular body as he gets some muscle mass and loses body fat. So, when people see a new body with muscle mass and no fat, they feel and say that their fat has gotten converted into muscle. This is actually funny to think that fats can ever convert into muscle.
Now, let us say that the same person, mentioned above, stops training and starts eating unhealthy food, he will gradually gain fat and his muscles would no longer be noticeable as the fat will cover up the muscles. Hence, people may feel that his muscles have converted into fat. This is actually absurd.
Thus, the hard and cold truth is that it is impossible to convert fat into muscle as these are different types of tissues with different types of cells and composition.