Basal metabolism


Those who are fat had higher basal metabolism

In Japan, as a common practice for getting slim, it is believed that “if we gain more muscle by exercising and increase our basal metabolism, we can get a body that won’t get fat easily”.

Right? This is because the calorie consumption for basal metabolism is about 60 to 70 % of the daily calorie consumption. (Attention: Daily calorie consumption may vary depending on the kind of work you do.)

I’m thin, so I was skeptical about this and I saw a TV program on NHK(Japanese National Television: more trustful than private televisions) a few years ago that might explain this....

【Tameshite Gatten(It means"Try and try") – I got thin so easily -】
(January, 2011)

They looked into the basal metabolism of two groups (“muscle team” and “can’t-get-thin team” who are rather heavy) in research institute where they could precisely calculate basal metabolism.

It turned out that women who were rather fat had higher basal metabolism..... Actually, they found most of the basal metabolism occurs in the brain and internal organs (heart and liver) and muscles account for only about 20% of this.
To consume 80kcal (about 50g of rice), the muscle weight needed is approximately 2.8kg of muscle tissue.

It seems like we would need so much muscle in order to become thin, but if we did so, we would then be overweight with muscle instead.

The basal metabolism is “the energy consumption while doing nothing” so the muscles do not have such a large effect. In this program, they concluded that “thin people are those who move  around often” so that it is important to increase “activity metabolism”.

(Basal metabolism standard value)

■General calculation of basal metabolism is by multiplying [basal metabolism standard value] with [weight] (from wikipedia).

■Another way to calculate basal metabolism is by HBE (Harris-Benedict Equation).

【basal metabolism】[man]
(kcal/day)= 66.473+13.7516[ w ]+5.0033[ h ]-6.7550[ a ]
w=weight (kg), h=high (cm), a=age 

As you can see from these 2 calculations, if you are the same age, the one who is heavier will have higher basal metabolism. The heavier one has a larger body so it’s quite natural.
Of course, if we can add more muscle, this basic value might increase a little but it’s not enough to prove that “a person is thin because of high basal metabolism”.

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