In Depth Look At Ketogenic Diets And Ketosis

With so many diets out there its tough to decide which one is best. I can find a scientific study to support every diet out there. You just need to figure out which one is best for your body, your training and your schedule. Here is an in depth look at a popular diet called the Ketone Diet. There are positives and negatives about it.

Establishing the metabolic state of ketosis even for a short period of time has many outstanding benefits.

What exactly is Ketosis? The metabolic state of ketosis simply means that the quantity of ketone bodies in the blood have reached higher-than-normal levels. When the body is in a ketogenic state, this means that lipid energy metabolism is intact. The body will start breaking down your own body fat to fuel the body’s normal, everyday functions.

WHAT’S SO GREAT ABOUT BEING IN KETOSIS?

Establishing this metabolic state of ketosis even for a short period of time has many outstanding benefits.

BENEFIT 1

The main benefit of ketosis is that it increases the body’s ability to utilize fats for fuel, which gets very lazy on a high-carbohydrate diet. When on high-carbohydrate diets, the body can usually expect an energy source to keep entering the body. But in the state of ketosis, the body has to become efficient at mobilizing fats as energy.

BENEFIT 2

Ketosis has a protein-sparing effect, assuming that you are consuming adequate quantities of protein and calories—0.7 grams per pound of body weight per day—in the first place.1 Once in ketosis, the body actually prefers ketones to glucose. Since the body has copious quantities of fat, this means there is no need to oxidize protein to generate glucose through gluconeogenesis.
“Ketosis has a protein-sparing effect, assuming that you are consuming adequate quantities of protein and calories in the first place.”

BENEFIT 3

Another benefit has to do with the low levels of insulin in the body, which causes greater lipolysis and free-glycerol release compared to a normal diet when insulin is around 80-120. Insulin has a lipolysis-blocking effect, which can inhibit the use of fatty acids as energy. Also, when insulin is brought to low levels, beneficial hormones are released in the body, such as growth hormone and other powerful growth factors.

BENEFIT 4

Another small but very important benefit of the ketogenic diet is that when in the state of ketosis, ketones, along with a high protein intake, seem to suppress appetite.3 A high-carbohydrate diet, on the other hand, increases hunger levels. Because you have to consume a lot of fat on a ketogenic diet, which hold 9 calories per gram, you are not getting much food volume. It’s not mandatory to be hungry on a reduced-calorie diet.

WHERE IS THE SCIENTIFIC DATA?

Fatty acid production in fat tissue is stimulated by epinephrine and glucagon, and inhibited by insulin. Insulin is one of the hormones the pancreas secretes in the presence of carbohydrates. Insulin’s purpose is to keep blood glucose levels in check by acting like a driver, pushing the glucose into cells. If insulin were not to be secreted, blood glucose levels would get out of control.in-depth-look-at-ketogenic-diets-and-ketosis_07Glucagon is on the other side of the spectrum; it is insulin’s antagonistic hormone. Glucagon is also secreted by the pancreas when glucose levels fall too low. This usually happens when a person skips meals, or does not consume adequate amounts of carbohydrates for an extended period of time. When this happens, glucagon is secreted by the pancreas to break down stored glycogen in the liver into a more usable form, glucose.

When the body’s glycogen stores begin to get depleted, rates of beta-oxidation increase, resulting in the mobilization of free fatty acids from fat tissue. This is where the metabolic state of ketosis comes in. During beta-oxidation, ketone bodies are released from the liver—because they cannot be utilized by the liver—and travel to the brain to be used for fuel. The free fatty acids can then be turned into a usable energy substrate.

Article provided by Bodybuilding.com

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Carb-Cycling for Rapid Fat Loss

Carbohydrates are the most important fuels during exercise at intensities above 65 percent of maximum effort. Unfortunately, consuming high carbohydrate diets might trigger weight gain and obesity. Cycling carb intake (carb-cycling) is a nutritional technique that promotes fat loss without decreasing performance. Carb-cycling refers to training when glycogen-depleted to improve fatty acid oxidation (burning fat calories for energy), and increasing mitochondria. Glycogen is carbohydrate stored mainly in the liver and muscles. Mitochondria are the tiny furnaces inside cells that provide energy. Increasing mitochondria improves endurance and enhances the capacity to lose fat.

Carb-cycling works in trained and untrained people. Studies found increased fat burning and glycogen replenishment in elite athletes, recreational exercisers, and unconditioned people.

Carb cycling might give endurance athletes a nutritional shot in the arm:

– Carb-cycling does not decrease endurance.
– It promotes fat burning and helps preserve glycogen- essential stored carbohydrate for high intensity exercise.
– It promotes fat loss.
– It increases fitness with less training.
The Science Behind Carb-Cycling

Carb-Cycling for Rapid Fat LossThe technique works by depleting muscle and liver glycogen with an aerobic training session followed by an intense interval training workout several hours later. Interval training is a series of high intensity exercises followed by short rest periods. A typical interval workout is six, thirty-second repetitions on a stationary bike at 100 percent of maximum effort with 2-minutes rest between reps.

Interval training when glycogen depleted is difficult and painful, but it is great for fat loss. While it works well for endurance athletes, it might be inappropriate for power athletes because it reduces training intensity and does not increase lean body mass. However, this method is appropriate for people interested in fat loss or cross training for personal fitness. Carb-cycling increases critical enzymes involved in carbohydrate and fat metabolism and up-regulates genes that trigger fat burning.

Exercising during sugar deprivation causes cell adaptations that promote alternative fuel use. Fatty acids, certain ketones, and even alcohol can serve as fuel for metabolism. Sugar (glucose) is the preferred source of energy during short, intense activity. The cells become more dependent on fatty acids when less sugar is available. Processing fatty acids is slower than carbohydrates, particularly during exercise. Mitochondria cannot speed up the process, so cells meet the increased energy demands by creating more mitochondria. This allows muscles to meet the energy demands of exercise by metabolizing more fatty acids and breaking down more fat.
Incorporating Carb-Cycling in Your Training

The technique involves performing high intensity interval training when glycogen depleted. In response, the cells will increase mitochondria and burn more fat.

– Do aerobic exercise, such as running or cycling, at 70 percent of maximum effort for 60-90 minutes. You can promote glycogen depletion by reducing carbohydrate intake for one to two days before the workout.

– Rest two hours. Don’t eat any carbs during this rest period.

– Do an interval training workout, such as running 8-200 meter sprints at 90 percent effort with 2 minutes rest between intervals.

This technique is inappropriate for strength and power athletes because it decreases training intensity by 10 percent or more. This is also a poor training method for people who want to increase muscle mass. However, this is a terrific way lose fat rapidly. Carb-cycling is not a magic bullet for preventing obesity, but it is an effective training method for jump-starting your weight loss program.
References

Burke LM. Fueling strategies to optimize performance: training high or training low? Scand J Med Sci Sports, 2010 Oct;20 Suppl 2:48-58.

Hansen AK, Fischer CP, et al. Skeletal muscle adaptation: training twice every second day vs. training once daily. J Appl Physiol, 2005 Jan;98(1):93-9.

Hawley JA, Burke LM. Carbohydrate availability and training adaptation: effects on cell metabolism. Exerc Sport Sci Rev, 2010 Oct;38(4):152-60.

van Loon LJ, Goodpaster BH. Increased intramuscular lipid storage in the insulin-resistant and endurance-trained state. Pflugers Arch, 2006 Feb;451(5):606-16.

Fat Burning Supplements

I get asked about fat burning supps all the time, and I have a combo I recommend to clients that is simple and very affordable consisting of Acetyl L-Carnitine, Green Tea, Yohimbine HCL, and Caffeine. I like this combo due to the ability to adjust each ingredient accordingly. There are some great all in one products out there, I just like getting ingredients separate and how this one is adjustable to the situation. This is a great supp combo to have on hand year round to help with fat loss or keeping body fat down. Some quick points on how it works and dosages: Acetyl L-Carnitine works by pulling fatty acids into the mitochondria of the cell to be used as energy (increased fat loss), Green Tea (make sure it’s standardized EGCG) and Caffeine both work by speeding up metabolic rate supporting fat loss or staying lean. Caffeine also helps with strength and focus, and Acetyl L-Carnitine supplies the brain with energy due to it’s ability to pass the blood brain barrier unlike the regular L-Carnitine version. Yohimbine HCL works by helping to open the A2 receptors for fat burning, those stubborn fat areas that receive very little blood flow. Insulin blocks Yoh’s ability to do it’s job, so if you are on a moderate to higher carb diet there is no need to take it, but if you are on a plan and having pro/fat meals it would be good to take it there while dieting due to circulating insulin levels being lower.

The best ways I have found over the years to take this combo is twice a day in the following amounts to start- 500 mg Acetyl L-Carnitine/2-400 mg Green Tea/100-200 mg Caffiene/2.5 grams or 1 cap Yohimbine HCL twice a day first thing in the morning to help boost metab and again later in the day after a workout when EPOC is elevated and fat burning is at it’s highest after training. (Note- when taking it late in the evening drop the caffeine so you arent up all night or like most take it pre-workout, some may need to drop the green tea as well if you train really close to bed). The period each day when fat burning is the highest is always going to be the hours after you workout (EPOC) when your body is striving to return hormone levels to normal, repair, and a whole host of other processes the body is going through- a lot of those processes are fueled by fat, so taking a fat burning supp is a great idea here especially the Acetyl L-Carnitine.

Article provided by John Gorman @teamgorman Diet Coach. http://www.team-gorman.net/

Curcumin for Muscle Growth

Here is a great article by TNation.com

Here’s what you need to know…

  1. Curcumin displays anti-catabolic effects.
  2. Curcumin can optimize the effects of insulin.
  3. Curcumin has been shown to reduce estrogen levels, which could lead to increased Testosterone levels.

Anti-Catabolic Potential of Curcumin

Curcumin is widely known as an anti-inflammatory and pain reliever, but new scientific evidence shows that it may also be anti-catabolic, insulin sensitizing, and even androgenic.

Studies have shown that curcumin supplementation inhibits protein degradation after injury and in cases of cachexia (general wasting usually associated with chronic illnesses), suggesting that curcumin does indeed display anti-catabolic effects.

Additionally, curcumin supplementation following eccentric exercise led to reduced post-exercise inflammation and markers of muscle damage while also improving exercise recovery. It’s even been shown to reduce muscle atrophy in the presence of deloading.

While no research has examined the effects of curcumin in muscle hypertrophy with weightlifting humans, research has indicated it’s entirely plausible that the yellow-colored phenol may have an anti-catabolic effect. This means that curcumin supplementation may be beneficial in adding lean mass and recovering from exercise.

Conclusion:  Curcumin supplementation appears to exert anti-catabolic effects, thus it may be an effective supplement in promoting muscle growth and recovery.

Anti-Inflammatory Properties of Curcumin

While some inflammation is necessary to heal, too much is bad news and can put you out of the training game for days, weeks, or even months. The literature is quite clear that curcumin has anti-inflammatory properties by inhibiting the major inflammatory pathway (Tnf-α and nF-kB). While the majority of the research is based upon medical applications, the research still applies to resistance training.

Curcumin is interesting in that it appears it can prevent the onset of inflammation and reduce current inflammation due to curcumin’s ability to mimic aspirin as a COX2 inhibitor. Perhaps the biggest benefit of curcumin’s anti-inflammatory properties lies in its ability to reduce joint inflammation and arthritis. Research has shown that supplements containing curcumin reduce the severity of joint pain in individuals with osteoarthritis and even in those with rheumatoid arthritis.

While the evidence doesn’t uniformly show a reduction in measurable markers of joint inflammation, individuals with joint pain that supplement with curcumin notice a marked reduction in symptoms.

Conclusion:  Curcumin supplementation appears to exert anti-inflammatory effects and is efficacious in reducing symptoms of joint pain, thus enhancing your training.

Push Press

Anti-Oxidant Properties of Curcumin

Perhaps the original use for curcumin was as a potent anti-oxidant. Of course, supplementing with anti-oxidants is a tricky business as there’s still some debate as to whether supplemental anti-oxidants may actually reduce the training effect. While oxidation of muscle tissue can play a large part in muscle catabolism, exercise induced oxidation may serve as a hermetic stressor that signals muscle growth.

Still, preventing excess oxidation can help aid recovery and muscle growth, and there’s ample evidence in both humans and animals that curcumin is an effective anti-oxidant that may help prevent an excessively oxidative environment.

Conclusion: Curcumin supplementation is an effective exogenous anti-oxidant.

Insulin-Sensitizing Properties of Curcumin

Insulin signaling in the muscle cells results in muscle protein synthesis. Anecdotally and scientifically, optimizing insulin signaling post-workout with proper carbohydrate and protein ingestion results in greater muscle growth.

Of course, like any hormone, the signaling of insulin is regulated and the anabolic signal isn’t infinite, but curcumin may actually help you squeeze a little more anabolic action out of insulin. It’s believed that curcumin prevents the negative feedback mechanism that reduces insulin signaling, suggesting that curcumin may be beneficial in increasing the anabolic signaling effects of insulin by increasing insulin sensitization.

Conclusion:  Curcumin supplementation may increase insulin sensitivity, suggesting it may help increase insulin’s anabolic action in skeletal muscle.

Possible Testosterone-Raising Properties of Curcumin

Testosterone is the king in the world of anabolic hormones. It drives muscle protein synthesis, increases lean mass, and promotes overall health and well-being. While curcumin has been touted to increase Testosterone levels, the research is lacking.

Currently, we do know that curcumin has a protective effect on testicular function, especially in the case of excess alcohol consumption. Also, high intakes of curcumin have been reported to inhibit the conversion of Testosterone to the more active androgen, DHT, but the likelihood of this being true in humans is low given that the research involved extremely high doses. There is some plausible evidence, though, that low doses of curcumin may reduce estrogen levels, which would have the effect of raising Testosterone levels.

Regardless, the jury is still out on the exact effect of curcumin on Testosterone in humans.

Conclusion: Curcumin supplementation appears to protect testicular function.

Dosage and Safety

A recent meta-analysis of six human trials found curcumin to be completely safe and even supraphysiological doses of curcumin showed no toxicity. The LD50 (lethal dose) has been found to be >2000mg/kg in mice, which if accurate and extrapolated to humans puts the LD50 for a 175-pound male at around 160,000 mg. Given that the standard dose for curcumin is between 80-750mg, it’s safe to say that curcumin supplementation is safe in prescribed doses.

Conclusion: Curcumin supplementation is safe in the recommended doses and side effects appear to be negligible or non-existent.

References

  1. Deng YT, Chang TW, Lee MS, Lin JK. Suppression of free fatty acid-induced insulin resistance by phytopolyphenols in C2C12 mouse skeletal muscle cells. J Agric Food Chem. 2012 Feb 1;60(4):1059-66.
  2. Li YP, Chen Y, John J, Moylan J, Jin B, Mann DL, Reid MB. TNF-alpha acts via p38 MAPK to stimulate expression of the ubiquitin ligase atrogin1/MAFbx in skeletal muscle. FASEB J. 2005 Mar;19(3):362-70.
  3. Deepa Thaloor , Kristy J. Miller , Jonathan Gephart , Patrick O. Mitchell , Grace K. Pavlath. Systemic administration of the NF-κB inhibitor curcumin stimulates muscle regeneration after traumatic injury. American Journal of Physiology – Cell PhysiologPublished 1 August 1999, Vol. 277no. C320-C32.
  4. Chainani-Wu N. Safety and anti-inflammatory activity of curcumin: a component of tumeric (Curcuma longa). J Altern Complement Med. 2003 Feb;9(1):161-8.
  5. R.R. Kulkarnia, P.S. Patkia, V.P. Joga, S.G. Gandagea, Bhushan Patwardhan Treatment of osteoarthritis with a herbomineral formulation: a double-blind, placebo-controlled, cross-over study. J Ethnopharmacol. 1991 May-Jun;33(1-2):91-5.
  6. Chandran B, Goel A. A Randomized, Pilot Study to Assess the Efficacy and Safety of Curcumin in Patients with Active Rheumatoid Arthritis. Phytother Res. 2012 Nov;26(11):1719-25.
  7. G.K. Jayaprakasha, L. Jaganmohan Rao, K.K. Sakariah. Antioxidant activities of curcumin, demethoxycurcumin and bisdemethoxycurcumin. Food Chemistry. Volume 98, Issue 4, 2006, Pages 720-724.

Flexible Dieting and Macro Nutrients

Thanks to John Gorman from Team Gorman in Springfield, MO for the great Periscope sessions he does each week. For more information visit his website at http://www.team-gorman.net/

 

Macronutrients or Macros make up the majority of our diets. There are three main macros: Protein, Fat, and Carbohydrate. One gram of each macro has a calorie value. 1 Gram of Protein = 4 Calories
1 Gram of Carbohydrate = 4 Calories
1 Gram of Fat = 9 CaloriesRather than typical calorie counting (e.g. Eating 2000 cals a day) Flexible Dieters would track macronutrients (e.g. Eating 150g Protein, 80g Fat, 170g Carbohydrate = 2000 cals) which more effectively influences body composition rather than just weight loss or gain.Flexible Dieting follows the belief that there are no miracle weight loss foods. No good or bad foods, just macro ratios
1 Gram of Protein = 4 Calories

McGrilled Chicken Burger:

25g Protein
33g Carbohydrate
15g Fat

OR

Brown Rice and Tuna

25g Protein
33g Carbohydrate
15g Fat

Both are the same macros and so both will achieve the same results in your body composition.

When food enters your stomach your body isn’t thinking “Healthy or unhealthy?” it is simply breaking down the food and processing the macronutrients.

Essentially, to change your body you can eat whatever you want so long as you hit your macro goals.


 

How much Fiber should I be having with Flexible Diet?

To maintain and improve overall health, although not necessary to change your body, I’d recommended tracking your fiber intake as well as John Gorman says in the video he recommends at least 30g of fiber each day. This will ensure that you are getting enough micronutrients as well.

What Are the Benefits?

I have competed in 2 body building competitions and I’ve experimented with a range of different diets. All of them have their merits but Flexible Dieting is by far my favorite it allows me to change my meals daily which allows me to continue to see success without getting burned out on the same old chicken and brocolli meals.

Here are a couple reasons why flexible dieting works:

1. Effective

The most important tool in weight loss is understanding that a calorie deficit is necessary for losing weight.

Although quality is still important, quantity is the greater determining factor in weight loss or gain. If you’re not in a calorie deficit you can eat all the “good foods” you want and go nowhere.

By tracking everything that enters your mouth you stop the guess-work and take control over how & when you reach your goals. Tracking, whether it’s your macros or calories, is hands down the most effective way to change your body. I highly recommend using an app such as MyFitness Pal which is available both in the Itunes and Google Play Store for download.

2. It’s Flexible

Flexible dieting is just that: Flexible.

By focusing on your macronutrient intake rather than eating certain foods you can still achieve your goals while enjoying life with everyone else. You can have your ice cream or cake and still enjoy losing weight!

One of the challenges especially around competition time is going out to dinner

Research shows that a more flexible approach leads to less anxiety, and more successful weight management, so being able to eat some of the foods you really enjoy will allow you to remain on the diet and in turn results in a healthy habit and lifestyle.

By allowing yourself flexibility you can join in on meals with families and friends, so long as you keep track of what you’re eating, but remember tracking it means weighing it out and knowing exactly the portion amounts not trying to guess how much is on your plate.

 

How to Get Started

1. Calculate your Macros

The 1st step is understanding what you are currently eating now, if you are not gaining nor losing weight then it will be best to track your food intake for a few days, this will be your starting point as to where you are in regards to your calorie intake. There are some macro counters online and even a great counter built into My Fitness Pal, but having a starting point and adjusting as you go is best.

2. Track Your Macros

This way of eating is all about tracking and measuring your macro intake.

I personally use the MyFitnessPal app (iOS or Android) as it has the worlds largest nutritional database which allows you to add your own items that may or maynot be listed in the database. It’s also allows you to import recipes from other websites directly into your own recipe section and track your meals and calories.

3. Buy a Food Scale

Trying to eyeball how much of a particular item you are eating is almost impossible, a lot of nutritional information is available on food packaging, however, a scale will ensure you accurately track what you eat.

Without a doubt I feel that flexible dieting has completely changed what and how I eat. I love having the ability to eat with family and friends, I’m seeing great results and I can see myself doing this for years to come.

 

Pre-Workout Nutrition – Set Yourself Up For Success

If there was an elected president of muscle-building meals, it is no doubt that the post-workout meal would garner the vast majority of the votes from the populous. Indeed, post-workout nutrition is important for growth and recovery, but it is also important to keep it in context. Without proper nutrition throughout the rest of the day, a proper post-workout meal cannot offset suboptimal meals at other times of the day. Here’s an overview of how to manage your macros for one of the other most important meals of the day – pre-workout.

Pre-Workout Nutrition – Set Yourself Up For Success
PROTEIN

We all know that protein is the most critical macronutrient for stimulating muscle protein synthesis.1 Increasing muscle protein synthesis is crucial to new muscle gain and proper recovery from a workout. Some studies have demonstrated that net protein balance becomes negative from an intense workout. Most of these studies examined exercise in the fasted state. Consuming a meal to optimize the rate of protein synthesis before a workout could theoretically attenuate the shift to a net negative balance. So the logical question is, “How much protein?” Based on the available data we have, it seems that the amount of protein required to maximize muscle protein synthesis will depend upon its leucine content.2 Various protein sources have different leucine contents, but it seems that around 0.015 grams per pound of leucine will max-out protein synthesis at a meal. So in a 200-pound person, this would correspond to three grams of leucine. That would be equivalent to about 30-40 grams of protein for most protein sources. For a protein source like whey, it would only require about 25-30 grams of protein since it has a very high leucine content. Something like chicken or beef would be closer to 35-40 grams of protein. Shakes may be beneficial for people who experience gastrointestinal (GI) distress during workouts, but whole foods are probably also fine for those who don’t.

Pre-Workout Nutrition – Set Yourself Up For Success
CARBOHYDRATES

Carbohydrates are probably the most controversial macronutrient in terms of recommendations and with good reason— everyone tolerates them very differently. I have worked with bodybuilders who could eat 800 grams of carbs per day and just maintain their weight, and I’ve met others who put on fat like a bear about to go into hibernation from anything over 200 grams of carbs. So there is a wide range of carbohydrates that encapsulate what may be optimal for your daily intake. For years it was theorized that you needed a large dose (75-100 grams) of a simple carbohydrate like dextrose in order to maximize muscle protein synthesis and muscle glycogen content. However, carbohydrates in and of themselves are not anabolic as they do not increase protein synthesis by themselves in adults.1 Carbohydrates may, however, have synergistic effects on protein synthesis when combined with protein.3 Carbohydrates may also improve performance by sparing muscle glycogen.4 Again, the question becomes how much is optimal? A recent study suggests that far less carbohydrate may be required to maximize the protein synthetic response when combined with amino acids/protein than previously thought.5 These researchers gave a large dose of amino acids plus either 30 grams or 90 grams of glucose, and measured rates of muscle protein synthesis. They found that both treatments maximized the anabolic response in the muscle.

Based on these data, it seems that in adults, glucose and insulin only need to be present in modest amounts in order to maximize muscle protein synthesis. One aspect of this study to consider is that the average weight of the subjects in these studies was 165 pounds, so for people who weigh more it may take proportionally more carbohydrate to elicit the same response. Additionally, while 30 grams may maximize muscle protein synthesis when taken with protein/amino acids, a greater amount may be required to fulfill an individual’s overall caloric requirement, carbohydrate target, and maximize muscle glycogen. Pre- and post-workout are the times when carbohydrates can BEST be tolerated by the body, so perhaps a larger amount of carbohydrates (anywhere from 20-35% of total daily carb intake) as a percentage of your total intake could be reserved for pre/post-workout. Additionally, carbohydrate has actually been shown to increase the thermogenic response to exercise when consumed pre-workout, another reason to keep carbs relatively higher at your pre-workout meal compared to other times of the day.6
FAT
Fat is probably the least important macronutrient where pre-workout nutrition is concerned. Out of the three macronutrients, it is probably most wise to limit fat compared to protein and carbohydrate intake for a few reasons:

1) If you are consuming a greater percentage of your carb intake pre-workout, it might be wise to lower fat proportionately in order to keep overall caloric load down, especially if you are dieting.

2) High-fat meals have actually been shown to also reduce testosterone release.7 While it is debatable how important short-term fluctuations in testosterone are, it is certainly something to consider.

3) Fat slows gastric emptying, and that might cause GI distress during the workout.
CONCLUSION

While less glorified than the post-workout meal, pre-workout nutrition obviously is very important for maximizing the anabolic effect of a training session. I suggest eating a pre-workout meal with adequate protein and carbs to maximize anabolism while keeping fat a bit lower, anywhere from 1-2.5 hours before a workout to maximize your performance and anabolic response.

Dr. Layne Norton is a natural pro bodybuilder with a Ph.D. in nutritional sciences. He offers contest prep, nutritional and training consultations through his company, BioLayne LLC. He recently released a new DVD, “Layne Norton Reloaded.” To learn more about Layne, the services he offers and his DVD, visit www.biolayne.com.

References:

Gautsch TA, Anthony JC, Kimball SR, et al. Am J Physiol 1999;274: C406-C414.
Optimal protein intake to maximize muscle protein synthesis: Agro Food Ind. High-Tech. 2009 Mar/Apr;20(2):54-57.
Beelen M, Koopman R, Gijsen AP, et al. Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab 2008;Jul;295(1):E70-7.
Haff GG, Lehmkuhl MJ, McCoy LB, Stone MH. J Strength Cond Res. 2003 Feb;17(1):187-96.
Glynn EL, Fry CS, Drummond MJ, et al. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol;2010 Aug;299(2):R533-40.
Brooks GA. Hormone and Metabolic Research (in press). January 2010.
7. Meikle AW, Stringham JD, Woodward MG, McMurry MP. Metabolism 1990;Sep;39(9):943-6.

By Dr. Layne Norton, Ph.D. Nutritional Sciences

If there was an elected president of muscle-building meals, it is no doubt that the post-workout meal would garner the vast majority of the votes from the populous. Indeed, post-workout nutrition is important for growth and recovery, but it is also important to keep it in context. Without proper nutrition throughout the rest of the day, a proper post-workout meal cannot offset suboptimal meals at other times of the day. Here’s an overview of how to manage your macros for one of the other most important meals of the day – pre-workout.

Pre-Workout Nutrition – Set Yourself Up For Success

PROTEIN

We all know that protein is the most critical macronutrient for stimulating muscle protein synthesis.1 Increasing muscle protein synthesis is crucial to new muscle gain and proper recovery from a workout. Some studies have demonstrated that net protein balance becomes negative from an intense workout. Most of these studies examined exercise in the fasted state. Consuming a meal to optimize the rate of protein synthesis before a workout could theoretically attenuate the shift to a net negative balance. So the logical question is, “How much protein?” Based on the available data we have, it seems that the amount of protein required to maximize muscle protein synthesis will depend upon its leucine content.2 Various protein sources have different leucine contents, but it seems that around 0.015 grams per pound of leucine will max-out protein synthesis at a meal. So in a 200-pound person, this would correspond to three grams of leucine. That would be equivalent to about 30-40 grams of protein for most protein sources. For a protein source like whey, it would only require about 25-30 grams of protein since it has a very high leucine content. Something like chicken or beef would be closer to 35-40 grams of protein. Shakes may be beneficial for people who experience gastrointestinal (GI) distress during workouts, but whole foods are probably also fine for those who don’t.

Pre-Workout Nutrition – Set Yourself Up For Success

CARBOHYDRATES

Carbohydrates are probably the most controversial macronutrient in terms of recommendations and with good reason— everyone tolerates them very differently. I have worked with bodybuilders who could eat 800 grams of carbs per day and just maintain their weight, and I’ve met others who put on fat like a bear about to go into hibernation from anything over 200 grams of carbs. So there is a wide range of carbohydrates that encapsulate what may be optimal for your daily intake. For years it was theorized that you needed a large dose (75-100 grams) of a simple carbohydrate like dextrose in order to maximize muscle protein synthesis and muscle glycogen content. However, carbohydrates in and of themselves are not anabolic as they do not increase protein synthesis by themselves in adults.1 Carbohydrates may, however, have synergistic effects on protein synthesis when combined with protein.3 Carbohydrates may also improve performance by sparing muscle glycogen.4 Again, the question becomes how much is optimal? A recent study suggests that far less carbohydrate may be required to maximize the protein synthetic response when combined with amino acids/protein than previously thought.5 These researchers gave a large dose of amino acids plus either 30 grams or 90 grams of glucose, and measured rates of muscle protein synthesis. They found that both treatments maximized the anabolic response in the muscle.

Based on these data, it seems that in adults, glucose and insulin only need to be present in modest amounts in order to maximize muscle protein synthesis. One aspect of this study to consider is that the average weight of the subjects in these studies was 165 pounds, so for people who weigh more it may take proportionally more carbohydrate to elicit the same response. Additionally, while 30 grams may maximize muscle protein synthesis when taken with protein/amino acids, a greater amount may be required to fulfill an individual’s overall caloric requirement, carbohydrate target, and maximize muscle glycogen. Pre- and post-workout are the times when carbohydrates can BEST be tolerated by the body, so perhaps a larger amount of carbohydrates (anywhere from 20-35% of total daily carb intake) as a percentage of your total intake could be reserved for pre/post-workout. Additionally, carbohydrate has actually been shown to increase the thermogenic response to exercise when consumed pre-workout, another reason to keep carbs relatively higher at your pre-workout meal compared to other times of the day.6

FAT

Fat is probably the least important macronutrient where pre-workout nutrition is concerned. Out of the three macronutrients, it is probably most wise to limit fat compared to protein and carbohydrate intake for a few reasons:

1) If you are consuming a greater percentage of your carb intake pre-workout, it might be wise to lower fat proportionately in order to keep overall caloric load down, especially if you are dieting.

2) High-fat meals have actually been shown to also reduce testosterone release.7 While it is debatable how important short-term fluctuations in testosterone are, it is certainly something to consider.

3) Fat slows gastric emptying, and that might cause GI distress during the workout.

CONCLUSION

While less glorified than the post-workout meal, pre-workout nutrition obviously is very important for maximizing the anabolic effect of a training session. I suggest eating a pre-workout meal with adequate protein and carbs to maximize anabolism while keeping fat a bit lower, anywhere from 1-2.5 hours before a workout to maximize your performance and anabolic response.

Dr. Layne Norton is a natural pro bodybuilder with a Ph.D. in nutritional sciences. He offers contest prep, nutritional and training consultations through his company, BioLayne LLC. He recently released a new DVD, “Layne Norton Reloaded.” To learn more about Layne, the services he offers and his DVD, visit www.biolayne.com.

References:

Gautsch TA, Anthony JC, Kimball SR, et al. Am J Physiol 1999;274: C406-C414.
Optimal protein intake to maximize muscle protein synthesis: Agro Food Ind. High-Tech. 2009 Mar/Apr;20(2):54-57.
Beelen M, Koopman R, Gijsen AP, et al. Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab 2008;Jul;295(1):E70-7.
Haff GG, Lehmkuhl MJ, McCoy LB, Stone MH. J Strength Cond Res. 2003 Feb;17(1):187-96.
Glynn EL, Fry CS, Drummond MJ, et al. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol;2010 Aug;299(2):R533-40.
Brooks GA. Hormone and Metabolic Research (in press). January 2010.
7. Meikle AW, Stringham JD, Woodward MG, McMurry MP. Metabolism 1990;Sep;39(9):943-6.
– See more at: http://fitnessrxformen.com/nutrition/pre-workout-nutrition/#sthash.AhtUFwDR.dpuf
By Dr. Layne Norton, Ph.D. Nutritional Sciences

If there was an elected president of muscle-building meals, it is no doubt that the post-workout meal would garner the vast majority of the votes from the populous. Indeed, post-workout nutrition is important for growth and recovery, but it is also important to keep it in context. Without proper nutrition throughout the rest of the day, a proper post-workout meal cannot offset suboptimal meals at other times of the day. Here’s an overview of how to manage your macros for one of the other most important meals of the day – pre-workout.

Pre-Workout Nutrition – Set Yourself Up For Success

PROTEIN

We all know that protein is the most critical macronutrient for stimulating muscle protein synthesis.1 Increasing muscle protein synthesis is crucial to new muscle gain and proper recovery from a workout. Some studies have demonstrated that net protein balance becomes negative from an intense workout. Most of these studies examined exercise in the fasted state. Consuming a meal to optimize the rate of protein synthesis before a workout could theoretically attenuate the shift to a net negative balance. So the logical question is, “How much protein?” Based on the available data we have, it seems that the amount of protein required to maximize muscle protein synthesis will depend upon its leucine content.2 Various protein sources have different leucine contents, but it seems that around 0.015 grams per pound of leucine will max-out protein synthesis at a meal. So in a 200-pound person, this would correspond to three grams of leucine. That would be equivalent to about 30-40 grams of protein for most protein sources. For a protein source like whey, it would only require about 25-30 grams of protein since it has a very high leucine content. Something like chicken or beef would be closer to 35-40 grams of protein. Shakes may be beneficial for people who experience gastrointestinal (GI) distress during workouts, but whole foods are probably also fine for those who don’t.

Pre-Workout Nutrition – Set Yourself Up For Success

CARBOHYDRATES

Carbohydrates are probably the most controversial macronutrient in terms of recommendations and with good reason— everyone tolerates them very differently. I have worked with bodybuilders who could eat 800 grams of carbs per day and just maintain their weight, and I’ve met others who put on fat like a bear about to go into hibernation from anything over 200 grams of carbs. So there is a wide range of carbohydrates that encapsulate what may be optimal for your daily intake. For years it was theorized that you needed a large dose (75-100 grams) of a simple carbohydrate like dextrose in order to maximize muscle protein synthesis and muscle glycogen content. However, carbohydrates in and of themselves are not anabolic as they do not increase protein synthesis by themselves in adults.1 Carbohydrates may, however, have synergistic effects on protein synthesis when combined with protein.3 Carbohydrates may also improve performance by sparing muscle glycogen.4 Again, the question becomes how much is optimal? A recent study suggests that far less carbohydrate may be required to maximize the protein synthetic response when combined with amino acids/protein than previously thought.5 These researchers gave a large dose of amino acids plus either 30 grams or 90 grams of glucose, and measured rates of muscle protein synthesis. They found that both treatments maximized the anabolic response in the muscle.

Based on these data, it seems that in adults, glucose and insulin only need to be present in modest amounts in order to maximize muscle protein synthesis. One aspect of this study to consider is that the average weight of the subjects in these studies was 165 pounds, so for people who weigh more it may take proportionally more carbohydrate to elicit the same response. Additionally, while 30 grams may maximize muscle protein synthesis when taken with protein/amino acids, a greater amount may be required to fulfill an individual’s overall caloric requirement, carbohydrate target, and maximize muscle glycogen. Pre- and post-workout are the times when carbohydrates can BEST be tolerated by the body, so perhaps a larger amount of carbohydrates (anywhere from 20-35% of total daily carb intake) as a percentage of your total intake could be reserved for pre/post-workout. Additionally, carbohydrate has actually been shown to increase the thermogenic response to exercise when consumed pre-workout, another reason to keep carbs relatively higher at your pre-workout meal compared to other times of the day.6

FAT

Fat is probably the least important macronutrient where pre-workout nutrition is concerned. Out of the three macronutrients, it is probably most wise to limit fat compared to protein and carbohydrate intake for a few reasons:

1) If you are consuming a greater percentage of your carb intake pre-workout, it might be wise to lower fat proportionately in order to keep overall caloric load down, especially if you are dieting.

2) High-fat meals have actually been shown to also reduce testosterone release.7 While it is debatable how important short-term fluctuations in testosterone are, it is certainly something to consider.

3) Fat slows gastric emptying, and that might cause GI distress during the workout.

CONCLUSION

While less glorified than the post-workout meal, pre-workout nutrition obviously is very important for maximizing the anabolic effect of a training session. I suggest eating a pre-workout meal with adequate protein and carbs to maximize anabolism while keeping fat a bit lower, anywhere from 1-2.5 hours before a workout to maximize your performance and anabolic response.

Dr. Layne Norton is a natural pro bodybuilder with a Ph.D. in nutritional sciences. He offers contest prep, nutritional and training consultations through his company, BioLayne LLC. He recently released a new DVD, “Layne Norton Reloaded.” To learn more about Layne, the services he offers and his DVD, visit www.biolayne.com.

References:

Gautsch TA, Anthony JC, Kimball SR, et al. Am J Physiol 1999;274: C406-C414.
Optimal protein intake to maximize muscle protein synthesis: Agro Food Ind. High-Tech. 2009 Mar/Apr;20(2):54-57.
Beelen M, Koopman R, Gijsen AP, et al. Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab 2008;Jul;295(1):E70-7.
Haff GG, Lehmkuhl MJ, McCoy LB, Stone MH. J Strength Cond Res. 2003 Feb;17(1):187-96.
Glynn EL, Fry CS, Drummond MJ, et al. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol;2010 Aug;299(2):R533-40.
Brooks GA. Hormone and Metabolic Research (in press). January 2010.
7. Meikle AW, Stringham JD, Woodward MG, McMurry MP. Metabolism 1990;Sep;39(9):943-6.
– See more at: http://fitnessrxformen.com/nutrition/pre-workout-nutrition/#sthash.AhtUFwDR.dpuf
By Dr. Layne Norton, Ph.D. Nutritional Sciences

If there was an elected president of muscle-building meals, it is no doubt that the post-workout meal would garner the vast majority of the votes from the populous. Indeed, post-workout nutrition is important for growth and recovery, but it is also important to keep it in context. Without proper nutrition throughout the rest of the day, a proper post-workout meal cannot offset suboptimal meals at other times of the day. Here’s an overview of how to manage your macros for one of the other most important meals of the day – pre-workout.

Pre-Workout Nutrition – Set Yourself Up For Success

PROTEIN

We all know that protein is the most critical macronutrient for stimulating muscle protein synthesis.1 Increasing muscle protein synthesis is crucial to new muscle gain and proper recovery from a workout. Some studies have demonstrated that net protein balance becomes negative from an intense workout. Most of these studies examined exercise in the fasted state. Consuming a meal to optimize the rate of protein synthesis before a workout could theoretically attenuate the shift to a net negative balance. So the logical question is, “How much protein?” Based on the available data we have, it seems that the amount of protein required to maximize muscle protein synthesis will depend upon its leucine content.2 Various protein sources have different leucine contents, but it seems that around 0.015 grams per pound of leucine will max-out protein synthesis at a meal. So in a 200-pound person, this would correspond to three grams of leucine. That would be equivalent to about 30-40 grams of protein for most protein sources. For a protein source like whey, it would only require about 25-30 grams of protein since it has a very high leucine content. Something like chicken or beef would be closer to 35-40 grams of protein. Shakes may be beneficial for people who experience gastrointestinal (GI) distress during workouts, but whole foods are probably also fine for those who don’t.

Pre-Workout Nutrition – Set Yourself Up For Success

CARBOHYDRATES

Carbohydrates are probably the most controversial macronutrient in terms of recommendations and with good reason— everyone tolerates them very differently. I have worked with bodybuilders who could eat 800 grams of carbs per day and just maintain their weight, and I’ve met others who put on fat like a bear about to go into hibernation from anything over 200 grams of carbs. So there is a wide range of carbohydrates that encapsulate what may be optimal for your daily intake. For years it was theorized that you needed a large dose (75-100 grams) of a simple carbohydrate like dextrose in order to maximize muscle protein synthesis and muscle glycogen content. However, carbohydrates in and of themselves are not anabolic as they do not increase protein synthesis by themselves in adults.1 Carbohydrates may, however, have synergistic effects on protein synthesis when combined with protein.3 Carbohydrates may also improve performance by sparing muscle glycogen.4 Again, the question becomes how much is optimal? A recent study suggests that far less carbohydrate may be required to maximize the protein synthetic response when combined with amino acids/protein than previously thought.5 These researchers gave a large dose of amino acids plus either 30 grams or 90 grams of glucose, and measured rates of muscle protein synthesis. They found that both treatments maximized the anabolic response in the muscle.

Based on these data, it seems that in adults, glucose and insulin only need to be present in modest amounts in order to maximize muscle protein synthesis. One aspect of this study to consider is that the average weight of the subjects in these studies was 165 pounds, so for people who weigh more it may take proportionally more carbohydrate to elicit the same response. Additionally, while 30 grams may maximize muscle protein synthesis when taken with protein/amino acids, a greater amount may be required to fulfill an individual’s overall caloric requirement, carbohydrate target, and maximize muscle glycogen. Pre- and post-workout are the times when carbohydrates can BEST be tolerated by the body, so perhaps a larger amount of carbohydrates (anywhere from 20-35% of total daily carb intake) as a percentage of your total intake could be reserved for pre/post-workout. Additionally, carbohydrate has actually been shown to increase the thermogenic response to exercise when consumed pre-workout, another reason to keep carbs relatively higher at your pre-workout meal compared to other times of the day.6

FAT

Fat is probably the least important macronutrient where pre-workout nutrition is concerned. Out of the three macronutrients, it is probably most wise to limit fat compared to protein and carbohydrate intake for a few reasons:

1) If you are consuming a greater percentage of your carb intake pre-workout, it might be wise to lower fat proportionately in order to keep overall caloric load down, especially if you are dieting.

2) High-fat meals have actually been shown to also reduce testosterone release.7 While it is debatable how important short-term fluctuations in testosterone are, it is certainly something to consider.

3) Fat slows gastric emptying, and that might cause GI distress during the workout.

CONCLUSION

While less glorified than the post-workout meal, pre-workout nutrition obviously is very important for maximizing the anabolic effect of a training session. I suggest eating a pre-workout meal with adequate protein and carbs to maximize anabolism while keeping fat a bit lower, anywhere from 1-2.5 hours before a workout to maximize your performance and anabolic response.

Dr. Layne Norton is a natural pro bodybuilder with a Ph.D. in nutritional sciences. He offers contest prep, nutritional and training consultations through his company, BioLayne LLC. He recently released a new DVD, “Layne Norton Reloaded.” To learn more about Layne, the services he offers and his DVD, visit www.biolayne.com.

References:

Gautsch TA, Anthony JC, Kimball SR, et al. Am J Physiol 1999;274: C406-C414.
Optimal protein intake to maximize muscle protein synthesis: Agro Food Ind. High-Tech. 2009 Mar/Apr;20(2):54-57.
Beelen M, Koopman R, Gijsen AP, et al. Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab 2008;Jul;295(1):E70-7.
Haff GG, Lehmkuhl MJ, McCoy LB, Stone MH. J Strength Cond Res. 2003 Feb;17(1):187-96.
Glynn EL, Fry CS, Drummond MJ, et al. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol;2010 Aug;299(2):R533-40.
Brooks GA. Hormone and Metabolic Research (in press). January 2010.
7. Meikle AW, Stringham JD, Woodward MG, McMurry MP. Metabolism 1990;Sep;39(9):943-6.
– See more at: http://fitnessrxformen.com/nutrition/pre-workout-nutrition/#sthash.AhtUFwDR.dpuf

Foods that trigger migranes

Everyone reacts differently to foods, but some foods are known to trigger headaches for many people—and others (especially those rich in magnesium) seem to help prevent them.

Eat: Spinach, tofu, oat bran, barley, fish oil, olive oil, white beans, sunflower and pumpkin seeds
Avoid: Red wine, beer, MSG, chocolate, aged cheese, sauerkraut, processed meats like pepperoni, ham and salami

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