Fat Loss to Specific Body Parts
Almost everyone would like to change certain parts of their body.
The waistline, thighs, butt and arms are common areas in which people tend to store excess body fat.
Achieving change through diet and exercise takes time and effort, leaving those who desire a quick fix in search of a faster solution.
Targeted fat loss, also known as "spot reduction," is a type of exercise that many people turn to when trying to slim down specific areas of their bodies.
However, there is quite a bit of controversy surrounding this method.
This article takes a detailed look at the science behind spot reduction.
The theory of spot reduction has been promoted in the health and fitness world for some time. However, there is not much evidence to support it.
Spot reduction is a type of targeted exercise intended to burn fat in specific body areas.
An example of spot reduction is exercising the triceps in order to get rid of excess fat on the back of the arms.
This theory of targeting specific body parts is popular, leading many people to focus only on troublesome areas, rather than exercising their entire body.
Burning fat using this method can be particularly appealing to those who have had a hard time losing weight in the past or failed to get the results that they wanted using other methods.
How Fat Loss Works
To understand why spot reduction may not be effective, it is important to understand how the body burns fat.
The fat in your cells is found in the form of triglycerides, which are stored fats that the body can use for energy.
Before they can be burned for energy, triglycerides must be broken down into smaller sections called free fatty acids and glycerol, which are able to enter the bloodstream.
During exercise, the free fatty acids and glycerol used as fuel can come from anywhere in the body, not specifically from the area that is being exercised.
Most scientific evidence shows that spot
reduction is not effective and that fat loss tends to be generalized to
the entire body, not the body part being exercised. Though targeted toning exercises will strengthen and build muscles, in order to see definition, weight must be lost through calorie-burning workouts and a healthy diet.
Following a healthy meal plan and creating a calorie deficit is crucial for weight loss. Limiting processed foods, eating more protein and fiber and practicing portion control are all evidence-based ways to lose weight.