The Fat Cell Theory
If you thought dieting was hard—what’s harder is keeping up with all the theories out there about how to lose weight, why you can’t lose weight, why others have better metabolisms etc.
When trying to do everything right, it’s hard not to wonder if you’re missing something that could change your life. One of those theories MIGHT actually pertain to you, right?
One theory that has been around for a few decades is the Fat Cell Theory.
The Fat Cell Theory
It’s not one of the most popular theories because of its indications on dieting success. Introduced around 30 years ago, The Fat Cell Theory suggests we all have a ‘set number’ of fat cells. We can never get rid of them (barring liposuction). We can only shrink them.
In a nutshell, that is the theory, but since then we’ve discovered that the theory is inaccurate in that we can actually GROW new fat cells.
The theory first posited that certain feeding and experiences during infancy could cause humans to grow additional fat cells and carry them throughout life. We now know that the generation of new fat cells happens throughout life—and the theory is not as ground breaking as once thought.
See, in the past scientists believed we were born with a set number of fat cells and we couldn’t grow more. THEN, scientists thought we only grew fat cells during infancy and part of puberty. But now, we’ve learned we can actually generate MORE fat cells rather than only increase our fat cell size. This can be even MORE discouraging.
Part of the theory that has had more research recently is the role of genetics in the number of fat cells, fat distribution, obesity and our eating habits.
The Fat Cell Theory and Genetics
The fat cell theory suggests that obesity is linked to genetics that result in ‘extra’ weight. Extra is hard to define because as we know—some people are just ‘bigger people’. They have thicker bones, bigger hands, and carry more weight. That illustrates how genetics can impact your weight, your frame and propensity to become overweight or obese.
It is the same reason for people who are shaped certain ways and carry weight in certain areas of the body. Fat distribution is piloted by genetics.
The theory suggests SOME people are just born with MORE fat cells to fill. Or they are born with the likelihood of developing more fat cells through hyperplasia, and perpetuating weight gain with hypertrophy—which increases the size of those cells.
The theory suggests your body will be genetically programmed to hold onto fat, grow it and enlarge it.
So, if it’s true—what can you do if you have more fat cells or have larger fat cells?
You do what everyone else does—diet and exercise.
You’ll still have to burn fat to shrink your cells like everyone else. And you’ll still have to make healthy food choices like everyone else.
You just might have to do it longer and with more focus than most. But you can do it.
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