There are a lot of misconceptions as far as how fat loss and building muscle works and like anything in life results are going to follow actions. Meaning that if your energy and focus in on losing fat then muscle building may not be optimized and vice versa with building muscle. However, as the below chart shows both can be done to a pretty large degree. These measurements are taken from a client of ours using an Inbody 270 bodyfat scanner.
Fat Loss Necessities
For you to optimally lose fat there are 3 primary factors that scientifically must be present:
1. You need to be in a caloric deficit meaning you
are taking in less energy (calories) than you
2. You need adequate amounts of LLeucine/quality protein to insure the weight lost
3. Muscles need to be activated or used
Some secondary factors are:
1. Hormones which can impact metabolism. You will still lose fat if your hormonal profile is poor if you are doing the above 3 however it makes it much harder. Certain foods influence our hormones better or worse than others as well as factors such as sleep, recovery, and stress.
2. Level of caloric restriction & food source *note if fat loss is the only goal regardless of muscle and lean bodyweight loss than caloric restriction is all that is needed. Research shows 1/3 fat loss with 2/3 LBW loss as being the norm
Muscle Building Necessities
1. Adequate progressive overload & volume
2. Adequate recovery
3. Hormonal profile/stress management
4. Adequate protein intake
Notice that there are some crossover or shared characteristics however building muscle is more an adaptation to how you TRAIN rather than how you eat, with the exception of protein. Even under conditions of poor protein intake if muscle is being utilized or stimulated consistently the body will be forced to have an adaptive response.
A Note on Carbs & Calories
It would be remiss to say that caloric restriction does not hinder hypertrophy as this would be false. The more calories and nutrients that we are taking in the easier it is for our muscles to absorb these readily available nutrients. The higher our carbohydrate is the easier it is for the body to shuffle water into the muscle. If we are severely calorically restricted then
its unlikely that muscle growth will occur and the lack of nutrients can absolutely lead to muscle loss.