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Equilibrium/Set Points in Human Body?

I’m new to this site, just starting a cutting program inspired by the physique clinic. I’ve dieted down from 250 to 180 10 years ago, and now I’m back at 260 but with more muscle and trying to cut down again.

I have noticed that I can much more easily maintain some body weights better than others. It seems if I don’t do any specific diet and eat regularly till full like normal, my body sets at 260. I won’t gain or lose on average.

Also, when I hit ~242, ~220, and when I hit ~190, I noticed similar equilibrium points where my body just wanted to stay at that weight/size. It took much more effort to break through those set points (not only losing more, but gaining the fat back too, my body just wanted to stay at that weight.)

This is just anecdotal evidence from my own experiences, but does anyone else have similar experiences, and is there any formal explanations for this? I’m a grad student in comp.sci. and neurosci. and have been exposed to control theory/cybernetics which can describe the body as being a complex system, engaging in positive/negative feedback adjusted ‘goal seeking’, so equilibrium points are bound to occur, but that’s a vague generalization. Anyone have anything more specific?

Much obliged.

[quote]anthony51 wrote:
I’m new to this site, just starting a cutting program inspired by the physique clinic. I’ve dieted down from 250 to 180 10 years ago, and now I’m back at 260 but with more muscle and trying to cut down again.

I have noticed that I can much more easily maintain some body weights better than others. It seems if I don’t do any specific diet and eat regularly till full like normal, my body sets at 260. I won’t gain or lose on average.

Also, when I hit ~242, ~220, and when I hit ~190, I noticed similar equilibrium points where my body just wanted to stay at that weight/size. It took much more effort to break through those set points (not only losing more, but gaining the fat back too, my body just wanted to stay at that weight.)

This is just anecdotal evidence from my own experiences, but does anyone else have similar experiences, and is there any formal explanations for this? I’m a grad student in comp.sci. and neurosci. and have been exposed to control theory/cybernetics which can describe the body as being a complex system, engaging in positive/negative feedback adjusted ‘goal seeking’, so equilibrium points are bound to occur, but that’s a vague generalization. Anyone have anything more specific?

Much obliged.

[/quote]

By equilibrium point do you mean that the body will stablize itself at your desired weight/shape if you require the body to stay there all the time?

The body does work with positive/negative feedback, but not necessarily with “goal seeking”. The positive/negative feedback occurs from the training, etc. For example, if you lift heavy weights, one of the feedbacks is strength and bigger muscles for the most part because the body knows that it needs this to continue the tasks. Another example is if you run longer distances the body becomes more adapted to the long distance running.

To say that you can change your “equilibrium” as far as where you stay with weight and your body in general, it doesn’t really happen. Your lifestyle, nutrition habits, training habits, and genetics all dictate what happens here.

If 260 is your equilibrium, anything from the food you eat, the amount of adiphocytes that you have in your body, to your myostatin gene (and other genetics), to hormonal levels in the body can all play a role in your “equilibrium”.

The only way to modify this is a constant change in lifestyle/diet/training and hopefully your body will become more “adapted” and make it easier on itself to stay at another target weight. But your body will never change what goes on, only adapt to help itself out in performing certain tasks…make sense?

You will never be able to change the fact that you can blow up to 260 whether it be muscle or fat. Metabolism, insulin sensitivity, and the rest of your genetics can only be manipulated so far.

I hope I understood your post well enough, there were soo many “BIG words” in there that my brain just fried out. lol just kidding.

This is all my opinion mixed with some knowledge I’ve gained…but I’m only 20 nearing the end of my A.S. of Biological Sciences and onwards I go…lol

Hope that was to some assistance.

Gerdy

Thanks for the input Gerdy.

I guess my question was a bit ambiguous. Your response was good though.

I learned in a biological psychology class that most people DO have a ‘set point’ at which their body prefers to maintain, regardless of lifestyle. Genes and all that. It’s not insurmountable, it’s just a genetic nudge in a certain direction. I don’t know how true this is (or why I was learning it in a psychology class), but it IS an ‘official scientific term’, for whatever that’s worth.

That being said, I think some of it might have to do with fat cells. Once someone has gained a lot of fat, those fat cells never disappear. They can be minimized, but it’s much easier for a formerly fat person to gain that fat back.

[quote]Annaerobic wrote:
I learned in a biological psychology class that most people DO have a ‘set point’ at which their body prefers to maintain, regardless of lifestyle. Genes and all that. It’s not insurmountable, it’s just a genetic nudge in a certain direction. I don’t know how true this is (or why I was learning it in a psychology class), but it IS an ‘official scientific term’, for whatever that’s worth. [/quote]

yes its there, but you can’t change it just like you can’t change your genetics. Just alter the way to play the hand your dealt.

those fat cells are called adiphocytes and the only way to get rid of them is to have them removed via liposuction, etc. You can shrink them tho.

Gerdy