Can You Turn Fat to Muscle?

Is it possible to turn fat into muscle? Why (not)? Find out here...

Is It Possible to Turn Fat Into Muscle?

Is it possible to turn fat into muscle? Hopefully no dreams are being shattered by saying this, but turning fat into muscle, in the literal sense, is quite impossible. It is an old and persistent misunderstanding that turning fat into muscle is possible, but in reality fat and muscle are two distinct types of tissue that are not interchangeable. Fat tissue is constituted of fat molecules, while muscle tissue is constructed by a complex combination of proteins.

Losing Weight

When you are losing weight, you can’t tell for sure what it is that you are losing, proteins from muscle and bone tissue, fat tissue or, in the case of fast weight loss, just some water. You can have a basic idea when considering the way your clothes fit or the way you are feeling. But remember that muscle tissue is more dense than fat tissue, meaning that it weighs more.

So, when you start sporting or exercising, you might be able to lose some fat, while, at the same time, you are building muscle. This means that the scales might indicate that you are not losing weight, you might even be gaining some. Actually, this is a very healthy change, considering that your body needs some time to adapt. After a while, you will see your weight dropping when the new muscle tissue is using fat tissue, the increase in muscle will begin to lessen and you will continue to lose fat tissue.

Building Muscle To Lose Fat

By lifting weights or performing other aerobic exercises you will probably build some muscle tissue, which in turn helps to burn some fat tissue. But without anaerobic exercises it will take a very long time to burn the stored fat tissue. When you decrease the amount of calories in your nutrition and perform anaerobic exercises to burn extra glucoses (so that it won’t be stored as fat tissue), use some of the fat that was already stored and perform some aerobic exercises to build some muscle, you will certainly see results. Patience is the key here.

Setting Goals

Equally important is having a realistic and healthy goal. You will often see tables that indicate how much you should weigh considering your height. However, remember that everyone has a different built. Maybe you have very dense bone tissue, or very dense muscle tissue, or both. In that case it will seem you weight to much, according to the tables. Don’t be mislead. Go to an expert and have your body mass determined by electric impedance. This means that, through a barely noticeable electric current, the relative amount of different tissues in your body will be determined. And then you can set a realistic goal for yourself.

In conclusion:

  • Do aerobic exercises to build muscle (this will also burn some fat).
  • Do anaerobic exercises to burn fat more effectively.
  • Set a realistic goal.
  • Consult a physician to make sure you don’t undertake actions that might be detrimental to your health.


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