I bet not many of you have stopped to ask that question! Fewer still would know the answer, but you will know that fat has substance, so it has to GO somewhere, it can't just miraculously disappear.
The prevailing belief, even by some medical and weight loss 'experts', is that we excrete it, or burn it off as energy, or sweat it all out.
The truth is we breathe it out!
Well most of it anyway. The vast majority of our fat is expelled via the lungs as we breathe out carbon dioxide. There is a small amount of fat converted to water, which we do excrete through urine or sweat, but the vast majority is through our breath.
So let's get to the burning question I KNOW must be on your mind; 'does that mean we can just breathe more and lose weight then?' The short answer is no, because first you have to access the fat cells so they break down into carbon dioxide and water before we can exhale them out.
And while this amazing fat-cell-via- the-breath disposal system is all automatic, accessing the fat cells is kind of up to us because we need to create a fuel deficiency in out bodies.
In this world of constant, over-eating, we rarely deplete our bodies of enough fuel to start on those fat cells meaning each breath will NOT be getting you any closer to a flat stomach. If I had to make a mathematical formula out of it (and I feel compelled to do that since we are getting all science-like), it would look like this:
1) Weight loss = fat cell access/conversion to CO2/H2O + breath
Unfortunately the far more popular formula is this:
2) Over abundance of food + no fat cell access/conversion = more fat/weight gain
Knowing that fat cell access/conversion is the key to getting rid of fat cells, it begs the question why would you carb-load before a workout if you are trying to lose weight? Why do you have to eat the minute you feel a mild 'hunger pain' when that is the time those fat cells are likely to start getting accessed and converted?
And why are we all so focused on food going in our mouths instead of the fat going out of it?
So next time you are about to give in to temptation (even though you know you shouldn't), stop, take a breath and imagine all that fat being released into the air then ask yourself 'do you really want to hit pause on that process?'
Sometimes logic can be a far more powerful tool than will power when it comes to losing weight.