Competitive bodybuilders consider fat their worst enemy be cause it forms in layers between muscle and skin, causing a loss of definition. Many years ago, when bodybuilding was in its beginning stages, definition was not a deciding factor in winning competitions. At that time, building huge muscles was very difficult to accomplish, so a man with enormous muscle size was usually declared the winner of contests This accounts for the pictures taken of bodybuilders many years ago, which show men huge in proportion but with little thought given to form and balancing the body. However, as gaining bulk became easier over the years, definition and the rigid discipline it required came to the forefront and evolved into the deciding factor for winning competitions.
Because body fat interferes with the striations that should be seen between muscles or groups of muscles, it should be kept at a low percentage of body weight. Yet, some dietary fat is necessary to stay healthy. This does not mean adding butter to vegetables or eating bacon for breakfast to maintain a chemical balance of nutrients in your body. Some fat is found in almost all food. A cup of spinach, for example, contains .3 grams, an insignificant amount, while 8 ounces of porterhouse steak contains approximately 78 grams—more than enough fat to meet the daily nutritional requirements of those not doing hard physical work. Always keep in mind that 100 grams of fat (about 3</2 ounces) contain 900 calories, while the same weight of protein or carbohydrate food contains only 400. The average American male consumes over 150 ui jiii'i ol fat daily, enjoying the tedinji ol hliving L-aien a satisfying meal because fat and food fried in it take much longer to digest than protein prepared simply. Unlike competitive athletes, many people are controlled by their appetites rather than the goal of building a healthy, vigorous body. Others are not aware that many harmless-looking foods contain a high percentage of fat. A Brazil nut, for example contains 67 percent, sunflower seeds contain 47 percent, and most cheese contains 30 percent fat.
Fats or lipids are similar to other nutrients in that they perform a number of functions essential to keeping body systems in harmony. They serve as a concentrated source of energy because one gram contains nine calories, while the same amount of protein or carbohydrates has only four. In other words, body fat has more than twice the amount of stored energy as the glycogen in our muscle tissue. Glycogen has the advantage of burning better in the short-term maximum sport loads required for lilting weights and htHlybuilJing, Having all ut out energy tttinics in the form of muscle glycogen seem* lik^ a fine idou Bui remember, e:i<:h yruni haji loss than half the energy -alur ol I At: thereioif twite li;: much would be needed and would result in an unacceptable burden of extra bright.
Iri addition to serving .lh a source ol energy fm is needt'd to Uirrri normal liiMic being used by the celll for repan and reproduction It is found in every organ but the brain and parts of the nervous system, although they too contain substances similar to fat that are lormcd I ram protcini and carbohydrates F.ii ,icis ua u pj<ltectivc device by surrounding ihc kidneys, heart, and liver and helping to iinc:uir them in place, b even Cu>liions ihe eye bull [mm the impact o| cur accidents and hruUil Mows delivered In the head in snmi; ipmt-. Hy functioning as a carrier ti»r ihc fat-Miluhle vitamins A.
F.. jnd K. it pcTmiL.i their ¡tbvnrpliijri intu I he hlisodsircam and thcii !,Hirjt:e :"i.ii future use. Oni hndic!. im in.sLiLj.t-d I mm tcmperalurt . Itiirigo by the same layer til I at that gj^'CS well-proporuoncd women (hose luscious contours uppiccMted by men,
|-aLs art: digested in a dillercm rmmnei irom either c lit hn hydrate-. mi protein T3it> must hL' iti mi| a'jh hile ii> ii'vnic-. fruui ilir pancreas Jinrt intestine call act on llicm. 1 hcv are coied a.", hud-, iiil only when nit", US absorbed than can be used ¡mnu:-dintcly II eaien ulnnc l hey ate digested mud; more slowly in .in otheT iiutncnls without thr acc-ampaninienl of proteins or carbohydrates, they are n<it completely digested. In this case a residue is left that is liable to btiromc toxic and cause headaches, intestinal gas, or loss of appetite. Excess body fat not only leads to obesity but overworks the heart and cardiovascular system, while the additional weight places stress on every joint and mmor bone in the body,
Tliiisr bodybuilder! who tend to bulk up and llicn crush-diet before compiling ?hclujd be aw.'irc ol constantly putting their hod J1 under ihc stress ju^t mentioned. And vsen khim by hulking up. ihe. increase hn:h muscle uud fat with the greater percentage ol the gaui composed of foi When ihev suin culling down, the lui cell- sii i rcmum iK-mjc very J litciili to dLspluct alter having Inrmcd J-\u disappear ,iiily when training vers rapidly with ;i minimum break between seLv md none between reps. I have always made a point of keeping fat at a low level throughout the year, thus gaining the advantage of maintaining top form without the necessity of crash-dieting. For this reason, my energy level is constant, and I have spared my nervous system the shock that results from the drastic change of bulking up and cutting down
To summarize, fiats are a concentrated source of energy needed to carry fat-soluble vitamins. They contain more than double the number of calories of protein and carbohydrates; therefore, your daily intake of them should be kept at a low level. The most common sources are butter, margarine, oil, mayonnaise, nuts, bacon, and fatty meats. Whole milk, eggs, chocolate, and avocados naturally contain some fat.
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