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What are the benefits to working out on an empty stomach?

Waking up after an eight-hour fast, the body’s stored glycogen (muscle fuel) is somewhat depleted. Doing cardio in this state improves one's body’s ability to burn fat because the lack of available glycogen forces the body to use fat as fuel. A study at Kansas State University published in Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise demonstrated that subjects burned a kilogram (2.2 lb) of fat sooner when they exercised in a fasted (empty-stomach) state in the morning than when they did it later in the day or in the evening.

Don’t do a long, intense workout or a weight workout on an empty stomach, but a light to moderate cardio routine first thing in the morning may be a great fat-burning kickstarter.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.