Does eating fat (fatty food) cause the body to burn fats more efficiently?


(mike lisanke) #1

I’ve been doing Keto and IF (and extended fasting experiments) for a long while (years). I started doing OM48 (one meal every 2 days) since the beginning of the year And its working very well for the remaining fat burning I need to do. In deference to Jason Fung, I’ve found longer fasting can cause muscle loss and skeleton weakening. I was doing longer fasting and found hair loss and muscle strength changing in a negative way. At the time, I moved back to a high protein OMAD diet and got back both strength and hair growth. But, I also started regaining weight and noticed visceral fat increase. So, the test of any diet is good health. Since the beginning of the year starting OM48, I’ve added butter to coffee Without any noticeable Fat Gain, continued weight loss, but with strength increases and continued hair growth. Skeletal strength is difficult for me to access.
Here’s the questions for the experts I know are on this forum… Can the fat consumed, which appears Not to effect my fasting insulin release (checking ketosis) be allowing Increased Fat Burning of my target to reduce body fat. My theory, based on what I’ve learned, would be the input fat not only maintains Basil Metabolic Rate but is triggering greater efficiency in fat burning. I’ve read many things about Ketosis but do not recall anyone suggesting that exogenous fat (diet) would change metabolism of entire fat burning in the body… Any citations/comments/criticism? I’m only interested in learning to be my healthiest. Thanks, Mike


Fat, apart from forming parts of cell walls and cell organelles themselves, are primarily used for energy when in ketosis. this is why I wouldn’t eat more than necessary tbh. I don’t beleive that all excess dietry fat will be excreted whilst on keto, so I would think that your body would store it for the next fast.
I’ve found myself moving onto higher protein, less fat, after reaching satifactory target weight and starting maintaining. The weight still stayed off.
I only put on some weight when I upped my carbs last Christmas (to allow myself to indulge in a great Christmas feast, then carried on for a month or so) and have been occasionally (eating out for instance) allowing myself to have some (small amount of potatoes for instance) carbs.
But the weight has stayed reasonable, and I revert back to keto in a couple of days anyway. Haven’t had bloods taken in a while, but everything feels good; BP, sleep etc. all good.
People say I look a bit better now with a wee bit of weight on anyway…so maybe the BMI target isn’t for everyone?


…just don’t do high fat and high carbs at same time- that’s where the higher danger lies.

But yeah- I sort’ve answered but dodged the question at the same time there!

Basically, I wouldn’t force more fat than required into me when on ketosis, or any other time.
I would only ‘self force feed’ extra fats if I was deficient in requied energy levels…but as you allude to; even if you can’t eat solid fats, a coffee with butter and MCT oil should bring you round (it blew my head off lol).

(mike lisanke) #4

Thanks for your comments and advice. I am looking for less experience and more science in the information I seek. Specifically, I’m looking for biochemical/physiological mechanisms where ingesting fat would cause changes in signals triggering more fat burning. Specifically, I wondering if ingesting and burning fat from foods will make burning fat from your body easier.

And yes, I’m very familiar with many Keto/IF techniques and admonishments (e.g. fat+carbs == bad).


Okay, I get you.
I moved from physiology/pharmocolgy/biochem into engineering a long time ago…and back then I’d never heard of keto.
I’m sure it has evolved now, but my old text books (which I still have :slight_smile: ) won’t really solve what you ask.

I would say a complete zero carb (which is impossible, even the carnivores will admit that) diet, with minimal protein (but enough to sustain biological functioning and cell reproduction), plus increased fat intake to get into a high state of ketosis would be your ticket, for a limited time…if more fat burning is your goal. (Why?) I wouldn’t recomend that.

But I would look at the bigger picture.

That’s the bigger picture in one way, for as you say.
there are other pictures for others. And you were on IF?

There is no universal magic bullet.
Eating more fat isn’t going to make you lose fat, unless it stops you eating other crud like carbs.

I don’t have any other studies for you other the ones already citated on here ad infinitum…find what works for you. I mean that in the best possible way.

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #6

Dr. Phinney says he has data to show that.

But the requirement is low insulin. It’s not so much that fat itself increases fat burning, as it is the low-carb, low-insulin context. Fat doesn’t affect insulin, but carbohydrate affects it enormously, because hyperglycaemia is potentially deadly.

(mike lisanke) #7

Paul, Yes, I’m very aware of the theory on Insulin affect on fat metabolism; Insulin prevents the release of lipids from fat cells and engages lipogenesis (exact opposite of lipolysis). It’s why we all now know fat + carb is deadly. But, it appears, what I’m seeing in my, N=1 experiment is an actual increase in endogenous fat (from my fat cells; abdominal) by increasing consumption of fats (butter in coffee)… it’s likely too early to tell if this is simple a coincidence observation But I’m almost certain there’s No Way my calorie intake has decreased (with added butter in diet). The observation is bot apparent waist measure (pinch in inch) and downward trend in weight While (as mentioned) maintaining feel and measure of strength. I’d like any citations or even general discussion pointers on what this effect could be. I’ve long ago read, Eat Bacon, Don’t Jog: Get Strong. Get Lean. No Bullsh1t by
Grant Petersen ( and many comment on how eating a fatty diet in forums and books and videos. Insulin’s affect on metabolism and hormone signal to fat cells is likely all that’s needed But it’s hard to see how Adding fat causes more fat burn Unless it’s reducing Insulin or increasing metabolic rate(?). Anyway, my speculations here won’t help… I’ll keep reading but hope there are (there have been) big brains here that have read other sources and can comment. Again, thank you to all who have comments/info. Best regards, Mike

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #8

If you’re already eating enough fat, eating even more is not likely to speed up fatty-acid metabolism any further. Fat is not magic, after all.

But Dr. Phinney says that data show that switching to a low-carb/ketogenic diet with adequate fat intake does speed it up, and apparently not simply because the lower insulin level re-enables lipolysis. For a fuller explanation, you’d have to watch one of his lectures.

(mike lisanke) #9

I’ll look for them. If anyone has links, post them!

(Joey) #10

@PaulL’s points are spot on. You might also consider that it’s not that eating fat causes the body to burn fats more efficiently… it’s the lack of carbs as (the easier to burn) alternative.

If you restrict the carbs, your body will be forced to burn something else.

Body fat is stored for this exact situation.

So it’s carb-restriction that forces the body to turn to fat (dietary or stored in fat tissue). That’s how you naturally adapt.

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #11

It’s not so much that carbs are easier to burn, even, it’s that hyperglycaemia from too much carb intake is a health emergency, so the pancreas secretes insulin to drive excess glucose out of the blood and avoid damage to the body. Since the glucose has to be disposed of somehow, the elevated insulin requires the skeletal muscles to burn it, and adipose tissue to store it as fat.

We diagnose diabetes when insulin resistance rises to the point where glucose control starts to slip, but as the late Dr. Joseph Kraft repeatedly pointed out, it is possible to diagnose Type II diabetes a couple of decades earlier, when the insulin resistance begins. And the hyperinsulnaemia required to deal with the hyperglycaemia is causing its own cumulative damage.

(Joey) #12

A finer point, properly made. :+1:


Yes, It has been shown that you can and do lose skeletal muscle during fasting. Generally, 24 hours or longer. Some doctors would argue this negates the positive benefits of fasting, especially for those over 60. However, if morbidly obese, any weight loss has been shown to reduce risk. Keep in mind that Dr. Fung sees “worst-case patients” those who are T2D and are morbidly obese. Once his patients’ blood sugar normalizes they are moved from a Keto to a LCH diet. Fasting is a protocol he uses successfully to address weight and blood sugar levels. 16:8 or in his Intensive Dietary Management Program he will use a 24-hour to 36-hour fasts 2-3 times per week and under medical supervision. It is not to be done every day. He personally does not fast on purpose, nor does he eat a Keto diet, rather he tends to eat LCH.


For me, it has always been the other way around.

If I consume enough fat to satisfy my body’s energy needs (or more), my body never seems to use the fat on my body (i.e no body fat loss).

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #15

If you’re eating past the point of no longer being hungry, that would explain the lack of fat loss.


That’s certainly not what I said.


Indeed and eating until satiation actually says very little (more like nothing) about our energy balance. I definitely didn’t lose fat just because I did keto and ate just enough not to be hungry (I was pretty good in the beginning and avoided eating unnecessarily if I remember well. it was ages ago).

Hunger and satiation is tricky. It’s not so hard to be hungry a lot while overeating. Okay, harder on keto (I did it on paleo) but with the wrong items or bad timing, I can do it. And it may take quite a few years to figure out and accept the right items and timing and doing it all the time. Keto alone just isn’t enough for all of us.

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #18

You said, “If I consume enough fat to satisfy my body’s energy needs (or more).”

What happened to me was that, in the absence of high insulin, my appetite hormones started working properly again, and by eating to satiety I found myself eating at a level that allowed my energy needs to be met from both my dietary fat and my excess stored fat. Now that my fat loss has ended, and I have entered maintenance mode, eating to satiety keeps me eating enough fat to satisfy my body’s energy needs, but not more.

So it sounds to me that if you are eating more than your body’s energy needs you are eating past the point of satiety, and if you are meeting all your body’s energy needs from the fat you eat, but not more (in other words you are satisfying your hunger and stopping), then you no longer have excess fat to shed. Or rather, your body disagrees with you on that point.

If you are not eating enough food to satisfy your hunger, try eating more, not less. The reasons for this are complex, but many forum members have found that cutting calories hampered their efforts to shed fat. and they started to lose once they started eating more, not less.


Ok. It’s just that - that’s not what happens for everyone as @Shinita said. Especially for women who often have other hormonal considerations to contend with.

It’s great that’s that happened for you but just scrolling through threads discussing “eating to satiety” reveals a disparity.

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #20

Also, women are accustomed to cutting calories in order to lose “weight.” But the point of keto is that lowering carb intake allows insulin to drop, so that it stops interfering with a number of different hormones. It’s effect is big on the appetite hormones (think of a bear putting on fat for winter; s/he doesn’t want to stop eating just because of a lack of hunger!) and also on the reproductive hormones (which is why two of the big effects of insulin resistance are PCOS and impotence).

Many women on these forums found that it took a month or two on keto for their hormones to re-regulate themselves. And those women who tried to continue skimping on the calories are the ones who report that once they started eating more, their fat loss began. We are so indoctrinated by Western medicine to mistrust our bodies that advice to eat to satiety is something that many people have to force themselves to follow. In reality, it’s difficult two out-think mechanisms that evolved to deal with all the conditions that can arise over two million years.