As LaRue said, it is different for everybody. In fact, I am unsure whether there are studies that show how long it takes for carbs or any other macronutrient to be stored as fat. What I’ve learned in my general nutrition and exercise nutrition courses is that the fate of carbs will be as such, in the order you see:
1. Broken down into glucose to be used as immediate fuel (only if you are partaking in some kind of physical activity)
2. If the fuel is not needed the glucose will be stored as glycogen in the muscles and liver for future use (how much glycogen is stored depends on how much glucose you used as energy during your last session of physical activity)
3. If the glycogen stores have reached their capacity, it will then be stored as fat
So according to this information, you essentially have “2 chances” before carbs are stored as fat. Let’s hope you did some kind of physical activity before you ate that cake, Casey!
If you had a piece of cake your sugar level will spike and you will store body fat. Next time wait 4 hours and have a meal with just lean protein and a healthy fat this will get your sugar levels back on track. When your blood sugar is stable your body will not store fat and you will start to release your fat stores. Hope this helps.
Certified Nutrition Coach
Hi Casey. I wish that there was a ‘single answer’ to this question (wouldn’t we all – smile), but the truth of the matter is that it ‘depends.’ Every one is different, with different rates of metabolism etc. so there is no single answer to your question in my opinion. Sorry.
That is a good question. If too many carbs are consumed, in reference to my studies done, less than a day. Good luck with finding another answer since no calorie intake has ever been officially published or established by the RDA. At least that I know of. Let me know if you find a solid answer. Good Luck, Brian Rozzi Oh, this would be on a healthy individual.