You Don’t Lose Muscle by Fasting or Dieting

You don’t lose fat, for that matter, either.

You have the same amount of muscle fibers and fat cells as you did when you were born.

Most people are born obese.

Muscle and fat cells change in volume.

It is so paradoxical that people fully understand that when they lose weight, body fat specifically, how easily they can put that weight back on.

Some people say they just look at junk food and gain a pound!

It’s true. When we shrink fat cells and decrease the volume, we can relatively easily fill them right back up, no sweat!

So why is it so hard for people to understand that if they lose muscle volume for any reason other than surgically removing muscle tissue, they can’t put it back on just as easily?

With its ancient wisdom and genome, would the body give us the ability to regain body fat with relative ease and not muscle just as relatively quickly?

Body fat does very little for the overall health and function of the body other than serve as a rainy day fund for energy.

On the other hand, muscle runs the active metabolic show and is vital to our immediate and long-term health and survival. Not to mention the quality of life.

Fat gain is easier, almost passive, through our diet, where muscle needs action to grow. But still…

Volume doesn’t equate to strength or function, just size.

When we work out a muscle that gets “swole,” pumped, and physically larger than before the workout, do we just increase our muscle fibers, mass, or cells?

No, we increased its volume.

Does the 250 lb bodybuilder have more muscle fibers than the super lean yoga teacher? 

No. Just more volume. 

Does the retired senior bodybuilder at 165 lbs have fewer muscle fibers than he did when competing at 250 lbs?

No. Just less volume.

Ever heard of the concept of muscle memory?

Fad diet programs and gimmick weight loss programs bank heavily on this principle in their pre and post-success pictures and stories.

You know, the ones with the fat, soft, out-of-shape guy or gal who loses weight and looks toned or ripped after their 6-week program, right?

They were in shape and toned at some point before the program, and yes, they have lost some fat in volume and weight, but they have regained the volume in their muscle.

Reducing the fat volume and increasing the previously built muscle volume makes for an impressive before and after picture. That’s the hook!

I am about to start a 30-Day Fast during my 30-Day Fasting Challenge, and if I lose the weight like I did the last time I did a 30-day fast, I will be at my 10th-grade weight and the lowest I have been as an adult… more or less.

Last time I lost fat and what was reported as muscle mass. I expect to do the same this time.

What I will not lose is a single muscle fiber or fat cell, just change what’s in them.

When I finish my 30 days, hopefully consecutively and successfully, I can then decide how I want to eat and train to restore any of that muscle volume I want and more without regaining much of the fat volume.

It comes back.

And what comes back is an upgrade from what I had before in metabolic function, fitness, and health.

Join my free 5-Day Fasting Prep & Planning Crash Course and roll into our 30-Day Fasting Challenge to see how it goes and learn what you can to meet your own fasting goals over the 30 days for you.

We can do better!

Dr. Don