Over the last forty years we have used activities like walking, jogging or cycling and other long, slow, low intensity means to burn calories and improve our fitness believing this was the road to a strong, lean healthy body. But we now know different.,Science has uncovered that we need to be concerned with the health and condition of the fat burning machinery that controls and drives our metabolism (our body’s engine). This driver is our muscles which make up 50 percent of our body weight. Their condition determines whether we burn fuel (calories) for energy or store them as body fat.,When we do not do enough muscle building and maintaining activity our muscles become weak and flabby and cannot burn as much fuel. This allows body fat to accumulate as well as increase our risk of a condition called ‘metabolic syndrome’ that includes a group of risk factors for nasty diseases like heart disease, cancer and diabetes.,Becoming insulin resistant is one of the major risk factors for developing ‘metabolic syndrome’ and is a condition in which the body’s cells don’t respond normally to this hormone. The body’s digestive system breaks food down into glucose which is the body’s main source of energy It then travels via the bloodstream to the body’s cells and tissues. After a meal is eaten, blood glucose rises and the pancreas releases insulin to enable the cells to uptake the glucose.,When people are insulin resistant, they are not responding properly to the amount of insulin their bodies are releasing and as a result their body needs more to uptake the glucose from the bloodstream to enter the cells. Eventually the pancreas cannot keep up with the increased demand and high levels of glucose build up in the bloodstream. If this continues it sets the stage for diabetes and when blood levels of both glucose and insulin are high it can damage blood vessels, tissues and organs.,The major causes of insulin resistance are lack of proper exercise that works the muscular system and consuming a diet high in fat and refined sugar. The majority of people with metabolic syndrome are overweight with progressive weight gain. Any adult who continues to gain five or more pounds per year raise their risk of developing metabolic syndrome by up to 45%.,The solution to this situation is to immediately introduce a proper strength training program to directly work the muscles improving their condition and their ability to burn fuel. Muscle tissue is where fat is burned and the better its condition the more fat will be burned both at rest and during activity or intentional exercise.,The program needs to be set up properly by a fitness professional and the exercises performed correctly with the right level of intensity (degree of difficulty) to release the necessary hormones for fat burning. The muscle cells will also become more sensitive to blood glucose levels so less insulin is needed and hormonal balance restored.,Metabolic fitness is directly related to how much the muscles a used creating a state of improved hormonal function that leads to long term sustained fat loss. Neither restrictive food dieting nor long slow endurance type activity will achieve this. Get the muscles toned back up and watch that strong, lean healthy body emerge.
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