Saturday, May 24, 2014
Where the fat goes

By Tony Wagner Citizen Columnist

Iwant to thank all of the folks who wrote in trying to correctly answer the question I posed in last week's column. What an amazing amount of differing responses to where the fat goes -- with exception of two, all of them wrong!

That's right, only two people got the correct answer. Let's review some of the other answers, shall we?

To the guy in Miami: No, it does not come out in your poop. Yes, readers, he assumed your body rejected the fat and it comes out in the form of poop. Wonderful.

Several women in Florida (who wouldn't tell me exactly where in Florida) discerned the fat just shrinks up. It remains in the body, they ascertained, but it shrivels up completely. Awesome. They told me to look at Marie Osmond. I'm not certain what that means, but I did look at her anyway.

To the guy in Stock Island: No, it does not get converted to muscles. Converted to muscles? Didn't that go out of style some time ago? Jeez.

Incredibly, the rest of the 30-odd answers I received were variations on these themes. Yikes!

And now for the two guys who got it right. Bravo! One is from Costa Rica and the other is from good old Key West.

The guy who answered it first was Dr. Hector Guzman. His answer: "Fat is stored energy. Energy cannot be created nor destroyed, only transformed into other forms.The energy most likely got transformed into heat."

That answer is spot on. Simply stated, the fat is converted to heat energy and radiates from the body. He got it.

Pete Rutskin was the close second in the race neither knew they were in. He wrote: "In layman's terms the fat is used for energy to keep the body going." This is true. It's all about energy conversion and energy use.

Remember, the food you eat is simply energy. The stuff you drink is simply energy. Your body has the unique ability to change the food to energy -- you can use or store this energy as fat -- a highly transportable form of energy.

Get it? Eat too much, the body changes that energy to stored body fat. Eat less energy, the body gets at the stored fat and coverts it to energy to make up for the shortfall. Energy. Isn't that super?

Nice job Guzman and Rutskin. The rest of you try to read a bit more. I will come up with another question for you to think about very soon. It was great fun.

-- Mr. Fitness

Tony Wagner, aka Mr. Fitness, has more than 30 years of fitness and nutritional expertise. A certified personal trainer and fitness author, he has helped thousands of people get into and stay in shape. Contact him at, and come visit at Bodyzone Fitness Center, 2740 N. Roosevelt Blvd., 292-2930.