You exercise everyday. You eat a healthy diet. And yet, the weight wants to keep hanging on. While your friend, who is doing the exact same thing has success. It is frustrating, and it isn’t always your fault. Genetics play a part in weight loss as well as body sculpting. Everyone is different, therefore the journey and results will be different for everyone. I recently read an article from Fitness Journal about genetic factors and weight loss. Here is the gist of what I learned.
There is what is called “epigenetic” factors such as: training, diet, sleep quality, and stress. These can have effects on your genes. These are also things you can manipulate. Then we have “genetic” factors, which are much harder to control. One of the most talked about factors in weight loss is metabolism. Things that affect your metabolism are: muscle contraction speed, the amount of slow twitch muscle fibers compared to fast twitch, how your muscle is composed, and how your body uses oxygen. Your bone structure can also affect metabolism depending on tendon attachment, bone length, and joint shapes. Then there are genes and DNA. Almost 200 genes in your body can affect obesity. When it comes to DNA, factors that affect weight are: repression of energy pathways, low levels of mitochondria, and more copies of the FTO gene (which is known to be obesity related).
So what can you do about it? First let’s look at the epigenetic factors. These are what you have a little more control over.
What about all the physiological factors that you can’t just “change” with a habit and fix it? It is time to look at your genetic factors and use them to your advantage. Here is how.
One important thing to remember is we all lose weight differently and our bodies gain muscle differently. So, just because your results differ from someone else's doesn’t mean you aren’t successful or doing something wrong. It might just mean your body works differently. Play around with exercise and diet, and find what works for YOU!
Star Fitness blogs are written by personal trainer and nutrition specialist, Haley Thiele.
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