The Myth: Muscle burns WAY MORE calories than fat. Therefore, boosting your metabolic rate means building muscle (example – resistance training).

We have heard the notion muscle burns more calories that fat…well that is true but how much are we actually talking about here? We look to the Primal Institute for answers –

MYTH: Muscle burns WAY MORE calories than fat. Therefore, boosting your metabolic rate means building muscle (example – resistance training).

It seems a 2007 presentation by Dr. Mehmet Oz has perpetuated this myth – “muscle burns 50 times more calories than fat”, which continues to surface as fact across the fitness industry.

MYTH BUSTED: “The truth is that a lean, muscular body burns only slightly more calories than a body with higher fat content but the same weight.” – Primal Institute

So what numbers are we really talking about? Well, if you’ve been a believer of the metabolic rate miracle of muscles alone, you may be disappointed –

“A pound of muscle burns approximately six calories per day, while a pound of fat commonly believed to burn nothing actually burns two calories per day. Our organs account for most of the calories burned in our basal metabolic rate, so even major reductions in body fat and additions of lean muscle have a relatively minimal impact on metabolic rate.”Primal Institute

So yeah, in a sense “muscle burns more than fat”…but we’re talking about two macadamia nuts per day here! 

“The metabolic benefits of adding muscle and reducing fat are more hormonal than caloric.” – Primal Institute

Achieving a lean muscle mass stands you in better stead than an improvement in metabolic rate. Lean muscle benefits for your body & health:

  • Improves insulin sensitivity.
  • You’re less likely to store fat.
  • Ditching that pesky midriff fat improves hormone function (yay for health!)
  • Excess fat in this region contributes to the production of abnormal proteins & cytokines – hello inflammation!

“As detailed in Dr. William Davis’s book , excess abdominal fat is itself an endocrine gland that promotes not only inflammation but also insulin resistance, and thus additional fat storage.” – Primal Institute 

So there you go, the benefits of getting lean, and following a Keto lifestyle, far outweigh the fat versus muscle myth. Now who feels like some macadamia nuts? I’m reaching for a Coconut Fat Bomb. Yum!


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