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How long does it take 3500 calories to become a pound of stored fat?
Asked by tollefsonangela on Apr 29, 2008 in Weight Loss

As a personal trainer, I'm constantly being asked by clients, "Well, if I take in more calories than I should for the day, how long do I have to 'burn them off' before they turn into stored fat?" They know that it takes about 3500 calories to equal one pound of fat, but what is the ideal "window of opportunity" for using those extra calories for fuel before they decide to hunker down and take up residence on our body!


The body ordinarily converts 90% of the calories in dietary fat into body fat, but there is no simple relationship between the rates of calorie burning and fat deposition.  We are in a constant state of building stores and breaking them down.  Enzymes and hormones regulate the processes of storing and generating energy from glucose in food, glycogen and protein, and from fatty acids from the diet, adipose tissue and synthesized from glucose.  For reasons not well understood, individuals differ in their tendency to convert extra calories to either muscle or stored fat.

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