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  1. #1
    Registered User Mustrainhard's Avatar
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    Question Benefit of a high metabolism

    Some of you may have seen this question before, but I didnt get any replies, so I made a new thread for it. For some one not looking to gain muscle, but is not clinically overfat (is skinny fat in the endearing BB terms), is there any real advantage to having a high metabolism?
    On the flip side, is there a disadvantage to being skinny fat, if her doctor has no problem with it, cause she is not obese. Now, I know there are some issues with a screwed up metabolism, such as being cold, anaemic, etc. However, these are not medically relevant problems in modern society. I ask because not everyone wants to be a BBer or athlete and may be happy with eating 1000 calories a day. They have to spend less money on food, dont have to cook as much and no hunting for refrigerators! Is there anything wrong with that? Incidentally, such women also fit the current ideal of the skinny and curvy (but weak) woman desired by popular culture (not BB culture, I know). I am not being the devil's advocate, but am looking for genuine arguments that eating really IS a good thing. Will rep for convincing arguments. Thanks.
    Last edited by Mustrainhard; 02-04-2009 at 11:07 PM.
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  2. #2
    Queen Miranda to you Miranda's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Mustrainhard View Post
    Some of you may have seen this question before, but I didnt get any replies, so I made a new thread for it. For some one not looking to gain muscle, but is not clinically overfat (is skinny fat in the endearing BB terms), is there any real advantage to having a high metabolism?
    On the flip side, is there a disadvantage to being skinny fat, if her doctor has no problem with it, cause she is not obese. Now, I know there are some issues with a screwed up metabolism, such as being cold, anaemic, etc. However, these are not medically relevant problems in modern society. I ask because not everyone wants to be a BBer or athlete and may be happy with eating 1000 calories a day. They have to spend less money on food, dont have to cook as much and no hunting for refrigerators! Is there anything wrong with that? Incidentally, such women also fit the current ideal of the skinny and curvy (but weak) woman desired by popular culture (not BB culture, I know). I am not being the devil's advocate, but am looking for genuine arguments that eating really IS a good thing. Will rep for convincing arguments. Thanks.
    interesting point, although i don't understand the 'high metabolism' question as it is not necessarily related to 'skinny fat'. people with raging metabolisms often have both little muscle and lean mass. they also perish sooner during a famine sluggish metabolism may have been an advantage in earlier times but can be a health threat in modern societies (as is insulin resistance).

    resistance training combined with 'proper' diet (to build mass) improves aesthetics over time, which is why the majority of people do it. but everyone has their own build / fat patterning.
    if physical appearence isn't an issue i don't see what would be 'wrong' with not eating a lot, so long as you're healthy (and do resistance training; it helps increase bone density and retain lean mass).

    untrained women generally carry a 'lot of' BF with 'little' lean mass.
    you could argue it is the 'natural' state. increased lean mass is obtained by 'unnatural' behaviour but then we don't live in a natural environment anymore. the BBing/fitness ideal is one among many and their adherents have their specific ideas about how one 'should' or 'shouldn't' eat.

    there are studies that indicate eating under maintenance promotes life expectancy: less metabolic activity = less oxidative damage. oxygen is corrosive. to breathe is to die
    but by not eating 'enough' (even if you eat 'healthy') you might not get enough essential vitamins and minerals. this can be supplemented though.

    eat under maintenance long enough > the body adapts and it becomes the new maintenance.
    if you're fine with it, why not?
    Last edited by Miranda; 02-05-2009 at 12:45 AM.
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  3. #3
    Registered User Mustrainhard's Avatar
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    By skinny fat, I mean people that have thin bones, very little muscle mass, and would be underweight, if not for the excess fat. Unfortunately, people like that I know have a host of chronic medical issues, none of which are particularly life-threatening. And of course, the rest of the healthy population ends up paying for them, as we know.

    I am aware of the studies where caloric restriction leads to increased life span in many species studied. Fascinating as it is, we should remember that the animal's diets are strictly controlled. In fact, the nutrient profile of the food pellets fed to rats and mice in our institution is better than most humans will ever eat (I am talking omega-3 and fiber supplements!). They never eat fast food and never sit in front of a screen for hours. So, applicability to humans is somewhat limited.
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  4. #4
    Queen Miranda to you Miranda's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Mustrainhard View Post
    By skinny fat, I mean people that have thin bones, very little muscle mass, and would be underweight, if not for the excess fat. Unfortunately, people like that I know have a host of chronic medical issues, none of which are particularly life-threatening.
    can the issues be traced back to muscle:fat ratio specifically?

    or are the individuals in question sedentary/eat an inadequate diet regardless of total energy intake?

    I am aware of the studies where caloric restriction leads to increased life span in many species studied. Fascinating as it is, we should remember that the animal's diets are strictly controlled. In fact, the nutrient profile of the food pellets fed to rats and mice in our institution is better than most humans will ever eat (I am talking omega-3 and fiber supplements!).
    isn't this about 'quality' - not 'quantity'?

    They never eat fast food and never sit in front of a screen for hours.
    quantity = mass gain/loss
    quality = 'health'

    i'm oversimplifying it a bit, as 'weight' (under or over) correlates with health, but one does not necessarily cause the other.
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  5. #5
    Registered User Mustrainhard's Avatar
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    People-Yes, sedentary and inadequate diet.

    Animal studies-what I mean is that the picture is much more complex than that, as you seem to be aware of. Pop science likes to makes things easy, but they arent.

    Its amazing that no one else has an opinion and wants to participate. We might as well just email each other
    Last edited by Mustrainhard; 02-06-2009 at 09:53 AM.
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  6. #6
    Bulking freebirdmac's Avatar
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    Skinny-fat in my opinion is not healthy. While the scale may indicate being at or under a good weight, the excess fat can be just as dangerous as for someone 20 pounds over weight. It's not just about subcutaneous fat and visual appearances, it's also about dangerous visceral fat. A skinny-fat person can easily have 20 pounds of excess fat but not realize it as lean muscle mass is so depleted. Doctors don't pay attention to the body composition of someone who is skinny-fat when they really should. Fat issues are the same regardless of overall weight.

    I don't fully trust the studies concerning low cal consumption and longer life spans. So much of our diets are crap and I wonder how much of the good results have to do with simply eliminating the crap.

    Personally I think eating 1000 cal a day to save money is ridiculous. It is very difficult to get all of the variety of foods and needed nutrients on 1000 cals. Yes, you can supplement, but that's not always equivalent to the nutrients in food. I think one would be far healthier eating a variety of whole foods and eating more reasonable calories. Not to mention having the ability to maintain lean muscle mass as one ages.
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  7. #7
    Queen Miranda to you Miranda's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Mustrainhard View Post
    the picture is much more complex than that, as you seem to be aware of. Pop science likes to makes things easy
    it is complex and highly individual.

    Originally Posted by freebirdmac View Post
    Skinny-fat in my opinion is not healthy. While the scale may indicate being at or under a good weight, the excess fat can be just as dangerous as for someone 20 pounds over weight.
    well that was the OPs point. acceptable BF range for females (excluding athletes) is somewhere around 18-30%. the 'normal' range has gradually shifted upwards since people in general become heavier.

    a woman can be @ 26*% and not have a 'lot' of muscle due to not to lifting weights - but she can be otherwise physically active which improves 'health' to being sedentary. what is not a problem is the fat per se but the excess fat. is it an 'excess'?

    my example may be 'skinny-fat' to us. boo. but she is not overfat (or overweight).

    the question also seemed to be more about energy intake / diet than not having 'more' muscle. at low energy intakes quality becomes more important.

    if there are problems, are they caused solely by (not in specific order)
    a] 'excess' fat
    b] inadequate diet
    c] too little calories
    d] amount of physical activity
    e] genetics
    f] 'lack' of muscle

    - or a combination of them, or something else completely?

    it's also about dangerous visceral fat.
    this is a very good point. fat distribution is highly individual though. the majority of women tend to store fat in the lower body, so visceral fat is not generally as big a problem for them, except after menopause when fat patterning changes (more fat around the belly).

    I don't fully trust the studies concerning low cal consumption and longer life spans. So much of our diets are crap and I wonder how much of the good results have to do with simply eliminating the crap.
    i'm not aware of studies done on humans (except the minnesota study) but 'crap' still refers to 'quality', not 'quantity', doesn't it?

    It is very difficult to get all of the variety of foods and needed nutrients on 1000 cals.
    if you get ~70 grams protein @ 280 cals + ~40 grams of fat @ 360 cals, that would leave 360 calories from vegetables, grains, legumes and other stuff. not a lot. i think the '1,000 cals' was a random number thrown in. 'low' calories depend on the individual height and weight. a 4'11 100lbs female needs less food than a 6' 160 lbs one.

    lest i sound like i specifically advocate 'skinny-fatness' i don't. this is a female bodybuilding forum. it represents a selection of people biased toward an ideal, which may fall within what's recommended or 'healthy' for the general population.

    resistance training has health benefits. it has those same benefits for fatter people. heck, it may even have the same benefits if you don't 'eat enough'

    *edit: 26% bodyfat is a LOT less than people generally think. most women tend to underestimate how much BF they carry. if someone looks 'fat' or 'chubby' to you, chances are she is overfat.
    Last edited by Miranda; 02-06-2009 at 01:59 PM.
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