How GLUT-4 shuttles calories into muscle instead of fat
What if we could do a certain type of exercise for only about 1 minute immediately before a meal and this could help stimulate GLUT-4 to shift calories into muscle cells instead of being stored in fat cells... sounds good to me!
So what's the trick?
Well, as you might have guessed this is yet another trick I learned from reading Tim Ferriss' new book, The 4-Hour Body, which contains over 100 of these types of cool tests and studies that Tim researched.
GLUT-4 is glucose transporter type 4. According to research that Tim has done, doing about 60-90 seconds of muscular contractions a few minutes before a meal and, ideally, about 90 minutes after a meal, helps to bring GLUT-4 to the surface of muscle cells, opening more gates for the calories to flow into.
As Tim continues, "The more muscular gates we have open before insulin triggers the same GLUT-4 on the surface of fat cells, the more we can put calories in muscle instead of fat".
I won't go into all the scientific details, but Tim actually cites several studies in his book that back up his theory that doing these muscular contractions a few minutes before a meal and 90 minutes after a meal help to shuttle calories into muscle cells instead of fat cells.
What Tim uses is a combination of bodyweight squats (which he calls "air squats", for contractions throughout leg muscles), band pull-aparts (contraction in upper back muscles), and wall tricep extensions.
He chose these specific exercises because they would satisfy the muscular contraction needs in large areas of the body for the pre-meal and post meal contractions, but they wouldn't cause a lot of muscular damage that would interfere with his regular gym workouts.
Interesting stuff! And I'm certainly trying to do about 1-2 minutes of exercise now before all of my dinners at home. I've also been incorporating the 2-arm kettlebell swing in my living room for about 60 seconds prior to eating a meal.
This is the kind of stuff that I've been enjoying while reading Tim's new book. He has all sorts of cool experiments and studies for little "tips and tricks" that you can use to change your body.
If you haven't grabbed a copy yet... this is one of the most interesting fitness books I've read in years...
You can go here to get copies of The 4-Hour Body. This thing is a steal at under $20!
If you missed the interesting articles from earlier in this week, see below:
2 Substances You Can Eat Pre-Meal to Control Your Blood Sugar Response
Warning: Your Cell Phone Carried in Your Pocket May be Damaging Your "Junk"
One last thing for today:
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Talk to you soon,
Certified Nutrition Specialist
Certified Personal Trainer