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Nutritional based articles straight from's specialist writers 

Posted 18 October 2011 by Brad Borland, MA, CSCS

Building Muscle & Burning Fat

Simultaneously - is it possible?

Do you often find yourself at a crossroads regarding keeping your hard-earned mass that you so tirelessly worked towards only to see it dwindle away as you diet down? Are you a “hardgainer” that has to fight for every ounce of muscle scared to death of reducing calories to get a more muscular midsection? More calories in equals more mass and fewer calories in equals less body fat – and it’s one or the other – right?

The age-old question if is it possible to gain muscle and burn fat simultaneously has been debated for many years. There are so many opinions from experts to people in the trenches that it is very difficult to sift through to the facts. Most will tell you that you must choose between the two in order to reach optimum success and that attempting both at the same time is futile. So why not just give up, reduce calories and sacrifice the muscle for better abs and more muscular arms?

Because you are better than that! You will find a way and put into practice a concise plan of action to reach your ultimate potential. The guidelines and plan included here are designed to help you not only keep, but build muscle while simultaneously burn body fat. It can be done with a little planning, discipline and hard work.

The Right Amounts

One of the single, most imperative principles in this plan is to eat the right amounts of macronutrients (protein, carbohydrates and fats). By manipulating these foods and staying strict with the guidelines your goals will soon be in range. Diet is so important that without adhering to these principles you will surely never reach your physique goals.


Protein: As the main source for building muscle, protein is absolutely necessary for your muscle-building strategy. Take in around 1 to 1.5 grams of protein per pound of bodyweight (this equates to 180-270 grams for a 180 pound individual). This will guarantee that your muscles will be getting the correct dose of amino acids for maintaining and building muscle tissue. Some prime sources are chicken, lean steak, fish, turkey, ground meat, eggs, cottage cheese, Greek yogurt and protein powders.


Carbohydrates: Carbohydrate is a great muscle-sparing energy source. This particular macronutrient will be drastically manipulated as the diet plan goes along and will play a major roll in its success so be extremely mindful of your intake on a daily basis. Be sure to have an intake mainly of complex carbohydrates and fiber. Sources include brown rice, wild rice, sweet potatoes, whole wheat bread, wheat pasta, vegetables, some fruits and Ezekiel products.


Fats: Never count out a healthy fat. Certain fats are essential regarding maintaining hormones such as testosterone, increasing fat burning and aiding energy levels. Healthy fats will be utilized to replace carbohydrate on certain days to keep blood sugar levels steady and help with satiety. Good sources include avocado, walnuts, almonds, olive oil, natural peanut butter, some egg yolks and sunflower seeds.

Light the Furnace!

Now let’s look at how we can implement these macronutrients and manipulate them in such a way as to build more strength and mass while torching our fat stores. Protein levels will stay somewhat the same throughout the plan. You need that steady stream of amino acids to feed to the muscles for recuperation and repair to take place. Try out one gram per pound of bodyweight and assess your progress. If you find yourself stalling, try to up it to 1.25 or 1.5 grams per pound and then reassess. That is about as high as you will want to go with protein – the rest is up to carbohydrate and fat manipulation. Give each change in protein amount about four weeks before reassessing.

Here is the tricky part. Now you will start to manipulate carbohydrate in such a way as to trick the body into delving into its fat stores for fuel. You will have high, medium and low consumption days. You will eat low carbs for two to four days followed by medium and high days. On the low days your body will burn fat for fuel and save muscle so as long as your protein intake is high enough. Before you starve your body of energy after so many days of low carbs (which if prolonged could lead to lower testosterone levels and metabolism) you will have a day of moderate carbs and another day of high carbs. This will shuttle in fuel to the muscle, rev back up your metabolism and be burned without storing body fat. Carbohydrate intake will be approximately .5 grams per pound of bodyweight for low days (90 grams for a 180 pounder), 1.5 grams per pound on medium days (270 grams) and 2.25 grams per pound on high days (405 grams).

Fat intake should hover around .25 grams per pound of bodyweight or 20-30% of total calories. However, on low carbohydrate days it would be wise to increase your healthy fat intake slightly. This will ensure your hormone levels will stay steady and will supply you with ample energy for your grueling workouts. On the low carb days simply increase your fat intake by 50%. Remember that one gram of fat has over twice the amount of calories of carbs, so a little goes a long way. For example, if you had half of an avocado on a salad, now on low carb days you will eat ¾ of an avocado.

The Muscle-Building Fat-Torching Sample Diet


Low Carbohydrate Days

Meal 1
3 eggs and 4 egg whites
½ cup oatmeal (dry measure)
Cinnamon for taste
1 tablespoon of natural peanut butter

Meal 2
2 scoops of whey protein powder mixed in water or 1 cup Greek yogurt
1.5 ounces of almonds

Meal 3
6-8 ounces of meat, fish or chicken
Green salad with 3 tablespoons of olive oil dressing

Meal 4 (preworkout)
½ of an apple or banana
1 scoop of whey protein powder mixed in water

Meal 5 (postworkout)
2 scoops of whey protein powder mixed in water

Meal 6
6-8 ounces of meat, fish or chicken
Broccoli, green beans or peas or green salad with ½ avocado

Medium Carbohydrate Days

Meal 1
3 eggs and 4 egg whites
1 cup oatmeal (dry measure)
Cinnamon for taste
1 tablespoon of natural peanut butter

Meal 2
2 scoops of whey protein powder mixed in water or 1 cup Greek yogurt
1 ounce of almonds
1 apple

Meal 3
6-8 ounces of turkey with two slices of wheat bread and 1 tablespoon of light mayonase
Green salad with 2 tablespoons of olive oil dressing

Meal 4 (preworkout)
1 banana
1 scoop of whey protein powder mixed in water

Meal 5 (postworkout)
2 scoops of whey protein powder mixed in water
12 ounces of Gatorade

Meal 6
6-8 ounces of meat, fish or chicken
Broccoli, green beans or peas or green salad with ¼ avocado
1 cup of wild rice cooked

High Carbohydrate Days

Meal 1
3 eggs and 4 egg whites
1 ½ cup oatmeal (dry measure)
Cinnamon for taste
½ tablespoon of natural peanut butter

Meal 2
2 scoops of whey protein powder mixed in water or 1 cup Greek yogurt
1 ounce of almonds
1 apple

Meal 3
6-8 ounces of fish
Green salad with 2 tablespoons of olive oil dressing
1 ½ cup of wild rice cooked

Meal 4 (preworkout)
1 banana
1 scoop of whey protein powder mixed in water

Meal 5 (postworkout)
2 scoops of whey protein powder mixed in water
12 ounces of Gatorade

Meal 6
6-8 ounces of meat, fish or chicken
Broccoli, green beans or peas or green salad with ¼ avocado
1 medium sweet potato

By Brad Borland, M.A., CSCS:

Supplement deals and recommendations


Posted 08 October 2011 by Michael Kory

Video: Healthy Homemade

Chicken & Cheese Pita Nachos

Healthy Homemade Chicken & Cheese Pita Nachos

Previous episode, how to make Pita Chips:

By Recipe by Michael Kory

Supplement deals and recommendations


Posted 10 October 2011 by JC Deen

Get Ripped With

Intermittent Fasting


Let’s talk about how we can improve our results by eating big and less frequently.

“So wait; you’re telling me I can spend less time preparing food, eat bigger meals, and get the same, or even better results than the traditional eat-every-two-hours thing?”


Intermittent Fasting

Enter the wonderful concept of intermittent fasting. For those of you unfamiliar with the term, intermittent fasting is a fairly new concept within the health and fitness realm.

While fasting may not be popular among the masses, it’s gained a lot of ground within a select group of fitness folk – and it’s for good reason; it works.

Over four years ago, I found myself preparing for a photo shoot, and becoming completely obsessed with my 6 - 8 meals per day nutritional plan. By the time I was ready for my shoot, I was ready to give up on this whole ‘being ripped’ thing.And about that time, I found Martin Berkhan, who’s largely responsible for bringing the popularity of intermittent fasting to the strength and conditioning world. His solid approach is fairly simple to understand.You merely pick an 8 - hour window to consume all of your daily calories. Once the 8 hours is up, you fast for 16 hours until you approach the 8 - hour window the following day. Easy enough.For the typical trainee who hits the gym in the afternoon (say 4 - 6 p.m.), you will fast intermittently from bedtime up until about 12-2 p.m. the following day. So, if your 8-hour window begins at 2 p.m., you will cease your feeding at 10 p.m.

The goal here is to focus less on eating and planning meals, and more on the things in life that take up bigger chunks of your time. Fitness should complement your life as opposed to ruling it.

This means no breakfast outside of a few cups of coffee and no mid-morning snacks.

I’ll give you a sample of what my diet looks like so you can see how easily I implement a fasting approach to my daily life.

Training Day

8:00 a.m.
Wake, work and sip on coffee until about noon.

2:00 p.m.
Break my fast with a shake (50g protein, 50g carbs, 10-15g fat from peanut butter),
return to work.

4 p.m.
Head to the gym for an hour to train.

5 - 5:30 p.m.
Return home and prepare a large meal
(50-100g protein, 200-300g carbs, 10 - 15g fat)

9 - 10:00 p.m.
Consume my last meal
(either go out for dinner or have some lean meat, veggies, and more starch).

Rest Day

8:00 a.m.
Wake, work and sip on coffee until about noon.

2:00 p.m.
Break my fast with a shake (100g protein from cottage cheese and protein powder, 50g carbs, 10-15g fat from peanut butter), return to work.

4:00 p.m.
Go for a walk in the woods, or down to the lake.

5:00 p.m.
Return home to work some more.

9:00 p.m.
Last meal
(100g protein – usually a fatty cut of meat with veggies or a protein-heavy dairy selection consisting of yogurt, cottage cheese, etc.)

By making this change, I’ve reduced my needs to prepare multiple meals throughout the day, plus I’m able to enjoy very large, satisfying meals, which highly contributes to dietary adherence – especially when attempting to lose body fat.

For those who are unfamiliar with this approach, I’m sure you may have some questions and concerns, considering fasting is hardly publicized to the masses.


“I’ve always heard that eating more causes one to burn more fat and stoke the metabolic fire – is this not true?”

While this is a commonly held belief, it’s far from the truth. Multiple studies have proven that meal frequency has no bearing on metabolism. One study from the British Journal of Nutrition suggests there is no evidence that meal frequency has any bearing on weight loss when in an energy deficit [2]. Another study from 2009 compares 3 meals per day to 6 meals per day and reveals no difference in weight loss when calories and energy levels remain constant[3].  In the end, as long as protein and calorie requirements are met – the way in which this happens (meal frequency) is hardly relevant.

“Don’t I need to continually feed my body with protein to ensure proper digestion and a steady supply of amino acids to my bloodstream?”

For a good while, this has been a popular belief – the body can only absorb “x” amount of protein in a sitting (typical figures are 30-40g in a sitting). Thus, we arrive at the 6 - 8 meals per day thing to ensure we get enough protein. The good news is our bodies are much more complex and fully able to digest protein in large quantities – ensuring a steady stream of aminos in our blood to take care of the recovery and growth process.  This study reveals a standard meal of pizza (600 kcals with ~37g protein) is still not fully absorbed even 5 hours after devouring it. What if you sat down at night and had a few large chicken breasts (~100g protein) in peanut sauce (fat), some potatoes? It only makes sense that this meal will be slowly digesting for hours to come without any fear of being deficient in amino acids[4].

Need further validation on the rates of protein digestion? Then read Alan Aragon’s article on the subject.

So, there’s no need to fear muscle catabolism here. Go ahead and enjoy a bigger, protein-dense meal the next time you’re out.

Making Sense of it All

Building an amazing physique is tough. It’s not for the average, impassionate bro. It takes time, perseverance and commitment. But then again, anything worth achieving rarely ever comes without a fight.

If anything, I hope you now realize that even with limited time, you can still push towards your full potential by making effective use of your training with simpler, more efficient methods.

If you’re tired or stressed out from all the ideals around frequent eating, I encourage you to investigate and learn about intermittent fasting – then make it work for you and your schedule.

Written by:

JC Deen is the author of JCDFitness – A No-BS Approach to Looking Great Naked, where he whimsically writes about intermittent fasting, strength training and the laid-back fitness lifestyle. Stalk him out on Facebook or pester him on Twitter.


[1] Wernborn, Mathias, Jesper Augustsson, and Roland Thomeé. "The Influence of Frequency, Intensity, Volume and Mode of Strength Training on Whole Muscle Cross-Sectional Area in Humans." (2007): 31-32. Print.

[2] Bellisle, France, Regina McDevitt, and Andrew M. Prentice. "Meal Frequency and Energy Balance." British Journal of Nutrition 77.S1 (1997): S57. Print.

[3] Cameron, JD, MJ Cyr, and E. Coucet. "Increased Meal Frequency Does Not Promote Greater Weight Loss in Subjects Who Were Prescribed an 8-week Equi-energetic Energy-restricted Diet." British Journal of Nutrition (2010). Print.

[4] Martin, Berkhan. "Top Ten Fasting Myths Debunked (Major Update Nov 4th)." Intermittent Fasting Diet for Fat Loss, Muscle Gain and Health. Martin Berkhan, 21 Oct. 2010. Web. 02 Sept. 2011.

Posted 04 October 2011 by Michael Kory

Video: Healthy

Pita Chips

Healthy Homemade Pita Chips

You will need:

1 whole wheat pita
Olive oil
Spices of your choice

 By Michael Kory

Supplement deals and recommendations


Posted 22 September 2011 by Michael Kory

Video: Healthy Pizza

in 10 minutes

Healthy Pizza in 10 minutes

You will need:

1 whole wheat pita
1/2 tbsp. olive oil
2 tbsp. tomato paste
1/2 cup fat-free shredded cheese (or low-fat)
Toppings of your choice

By Michael Kory

Supplement deals and recommendations


Posted 15 September 2011 by Anna from proteinpow

Recipe: Strawberry

Protein Fluff

Protein fluff


  • 1 cup of frozen strawberries
  • 1/2 cup of milk
  • 30g ON whey (I used strawberry whey but vanilla works too)
  • 1/2tsp of xanthar gum (this is optional, it gives it extra 'hold' but it works fine without it)


Blend it all together until it's all well mixed and then, with an electric whisker, whisk it for 2 to 5 minutes (sometimes the more you whisk, the fluffier it gets but I get impatient after 2 minutes). Enjoy!!! :-D


  • 207kcals,
  • 21g carb,
  • 27g protein,
  • 2.5g fat
  • 3.8g fiber

Recipe by: Anna from

Posted 23 August 2011 by Anna from proteinpow

Recipe: Banana

Protein Pancakes

Banana Protein Pancakes


Ingredients: 32g quinoa flakes + 192g egg whites,
56g vanilla myofusion, half of a banana, vanilla essence, grated orange peel.


Instructions: Throw all the ingredients together and
fry them on a non-stick pan with coconut oil


4 big pancakes:
504 kcals,
64g protein,
41g carbs 8 fat and 7.4g fiber
(+ your topping of choice)

Recipe by Anna from

Posted 02 January 2012 by Brad Borland, MA, CSCS


To A Better Physique


1. Good morning whey

1. Good morning whey: Immediately upon wakening, down a small whey protein shake 30 or so minutes before your solid breakfast meal. This will halt the catabolic state you may have undergone while sleeping. 20 to 30 grams should do the trick.

2. Pre whey

2. Pre whey: It’s also a good idea to get in about 20 to 30 grams of fast-acting whey protein 30 minutes or so prior to training. As said before, this can kick start the rebuilding process during training by saturating the blood with muscle-building amino acids.

3. Post whey

3. Post whey: To keep the rebuilding process alive, take in 40 to 50 grams of whey within 30 minutes of training. This will ensure the starved muscle will have ample protein to draw upon.

4. Post training simple carbs

4. Post training simple carbs: This would be one of the few times each training day to get away with taking simple carbs. As said in the nutrition section, Gatorade, fruit juice or even specialized supplements such as Vitargo are good choices. This quick insulin spike will aid in recovery.

5. Post casein

5. Post casein: If it is in your budget, replacing around 10 to 20 grams of your post-training whey shake with a casein product may be a good idea. More research is justifying the benefits of this slow-digesting form of protein regarding immediate recovery.

6. Casein after dark

6. Casein after dark: Another great time to ingest casein is before bed. Since you are virtually fasting for eight hours while you sleep casein is a perfect fix due to being a slow-digesting protein.

7. Creatine before

7. Creatine before: Everyone knows the benefits of creatine by now. It saturates the muscle with fluids, therefore aiding in protein synthesis, it can boost recovery between sets and workouts. Consume 3 to 5 grams with your pre-workout protein shake.

8. Creatine after

8. Creatine after: Again, another great time to shuttle nutrients in starving muscle is within 30 minutes after training if not sooner. Take in another 3 to 5 grams with your post-workout protein shake.

9. Glutamine

9. Glutamine: As one of the most abundant amino acids in muscle cells, glutamine aids in recovery by strengthening the immune system. 10 or so grams both pre and post training will help in the recovery process.

10. Carnitine

10. Carnitine: As another “supplement behind the curtain,” carnitine helps transport fats to the mitochondria of muscle cells to be burned as fuel. Try one gram morning, pre and post workout and again before bed.

11. ZMA at night

11. ZMA at night: The combination of zinc, magnesium and additionally vitamin B6 has actually been shown to increase IGF-1 and testosterone levels. 30 to 60 minutes before sleep take 30 mg of zinc, 450 mg of magnesium and around 10 mg of B6.

12. The antioxidant C

12. The antioxidant C: With all of the hype surrounding the latest and greatest in supplement science, you cannot forget your foundation. Vitamin C is a powerful supplement you may never “feel.” It works hard to strengthen the immune system so you can come back stronger every time. Take around 500 mg with your post-training whole food meal.

13. The antioxidant E

13. The antioxidant E: Vitamin E has the ability to reduce muscle cell damage and helps with recovery. This antioxidant is also important for skin, nail and hair health. Go with 200 to 400 IUs with your post-training whole food meal.

14. BCAAs

14. BCAAs: BCAAs are made up of leucine, isoleucine and valine which are used for fuel during intense workouts thus preventing your body from scavenging hard-earned muscle for energy. At other times of day BCAAs help stimulate protein synthesis and ward off cortisol, the catabolic hormone that can scavenge hard-earned muscle. Try 5 to 10 grams upon waking and pre and post training.

15. Arginine

15. Arginine: converted to Nitric Oxide (NO) in the body arginine is a powerful supplement with a host of benefits including increased blood flow allowing nutrients and hormones to do there job. Go with 2 to 3 grams upon waking, pre-workout and 30 to 60 minutes prior to sleep.

16. Give green tea a try

16. Give green tea a try: Green tea can inhibit the enzyme that breaks down norepinephrine resulting in higher levels of the metabolic hormone and increased fat loss. Combined with caffeine, green tea extract is one powerful and widely used natural supplement chalk full of antioxidants. A cup or so three times per day before meals can aid in recovery and help burn fat.

17. Try one supplement at a time

17. Try one supplement at a time: Taking every supplement in the book all at once is not a wise practice. How will you know which one works and which one is a waste of your time and money? Take one for 4 to 6 weeks and documents your results. Over time you will know well enough what you need for your specific goals.

18. Not all supplements work for everyone

18. Not all supplements work for everyone: Do not be surprised if a particular supplement works for your buddy and not for you. Everyone has a different metabolism so be patient in finding what works.

19. Give some supplements time to work

19. Give some supplements time to work: As said before, give a particular supplement time to do its job. Being impatient will not only waste of your time but your money as well.

20. Search around for the best deal on supplements

20. Look around for the best deals,, for a huge selection
of your favorite supplements.

Written by Brad Borland, MA, CSCS

Posted 08 September 2011 by Brad Borland, MA, CSCS


To A Better Physique


1. Eat plenty of protein

1. Eat plenty of protein: You’ve heard it before; take in around one gram of protein per pound of bodyweight. This is essential if your plan is to build instead of maintain muscle mass.

2. Eat the right kinds of protein

2. Eat the right kinds of protein: Make sure your proteins are from lean sources such as lean beef, lean ground meats, turkey, fish such as salmon and tilapia, chicken breasts, protein powders, egg whites with a few yolks, skim milk and fat-free or low-fat cottage cheese.

3. Eat the right kind of carbohydrate

3. Eat the right kind of carbohydrate: Stick with complex carbs such as oatmeal, wheat bread, brown and wild rice, sweet potatoes, wheat pasta, and quinoa. This will ensure that your blood sugar stays steady throughout the day to supply you with ample energy for your hard workouts.

4. Eat healthy fats

4. Eat healthy fats: Healthy fats are essential for many functions such as brain and heart activity, hormone regulation and energy. Get healthy fats from sources such as oily fish, almonds, avocado, natural peanut butter and oil dressings.

5. Eat your fruits and vegetables

5. Eat your fruits and vegetables: Fruits and vegetables provide a myriad of benefits including a great source of fiber, photochemicals, vitamins, minerals and natural sugars. For vegetables go for dark leafy greens such as spinach, broccoli, peas, and green beans and for fruits go with bananas, apples, cherries, blueberries and grapefruit.

6. Consume fiber

6. Consume fiber: Consuming food high in fiber helps keep blood sugar levels steady and can aid in your goals of leaning up. Fiber provides bulk to foods, therefore making you feel fuller longer.

7. Don’t eat too much

7. Don’t eat too much: We keep on talking about what to do. Well, here is something NOT to do: overeat. Give yourself just enough food to fulfill your protein requirements and to give you enough energy for your intense workouts and that’s it! Eating beyond your needs will result in fat gain.

8. Eat a surplus while bulking

8. Eat a surplus while bulking: This may sound contrary to the last principle but you need to eat a little more than what you maintain your current bodyweight with in order to gain muscle. Here is the main point: you only need around 200 to 400 additional calories to start gaining quality weight, not a buffet!

9. Eat into a deficit if dieting

9. Eat into a deficit if dieting: The same hold true for the opposite. A 200 to 400 calorie decrease is all that is needed for your body to start burning fat for fuel. In other words, starving yourself will just make your body hold on to fat tissue.

10. Protein for breakfast

10. Protein for breakfast: Make sure to get in some quality protein as soon as you rise in the morning. Something like some egg whites with one yolk will do the trick. Eggs are easy to digest and are an excellent source of amino acids. Research has shown that starting your day with a protein food will steady blood sugar and rev the metabolism for the entire day!

11. Complex carbs for breakfast

11. Complex carbs for breakfast: With that protein you need some energy. Complex carbs with a little fiber thrown in for good measure is perfect for stoking the furnace after an eight hour fasting.

12. Carb fuel pre workout

12. Carb fuel pre workout: Eating complex carbs an hour or so prior to training will ensure you will have enough energy to make it through your entire workout. Try around 50 to 100 grams of carbs.

13. Fast-acting protein pre workout

13. Fast-acting protein pre workout: This is a good time to surge your muscles and blood with amino acids from a fast absorbing protein source such as egg whites or whey protein powder. By having this rush of protein you will pack the muscle with protein and be ready for the rebuilding process when you are finished. Consume around 20 to 30 grams pre workout.

14. Quick protein after training

14. Quick protein after training: The perfect time to start the rebuilding process post training is within 30 minutes of finishing. Taking a fast-acting protein source will guarantee that your muscles will get the muscle building nutrients they need as fast as possible to grow larger and stronger. Consume around 40 to 50 grams of whey protein powder or egg whites.


15. Simple carbs post training

15. Simple carbs post training: With your protein source you need fast-acting carbs as well. The simple sugars will enter into the muscle cells at a quick rate and will react with certain hormones to kick-start the rebuilding process. Try 50 to 100 grams of a simple carb source with no fiber such as Gatorade, white bread, fruit juice, or dextrose.

16. No fats immediately after the gym

16. No fats immediately after the gym: Taking in fats after training will only slow down the absorption of vital nutrients trying to get to the broken-down muscle tissue.

17. Curtail the carbs at night

17. Curtail the carbs at night: As the day progresses lower your carb intake. This will help keep the fat off and aid in fat burning. Have a lean source of protein with a healthy fat and a little fiber. A meat or chicken salad with avocado and oil dressing would be perfect.

18. Cycle calories

18. Cycle calories: After a while you will hit a plateau in your efforts to either lose or gain weight. The body is incredibly adaptable and sooner or later it will fight change. Try cycling your carbs by having a few days of baseline calories then have a high calorie day followed by a low calorie day. This will keep the body guessing and help to continue your progress.

19. Cheat once per week

19. Cheat once per week: This is similar to the last principle. Have one meal or entire day per week of whatever you want-within reason. Of course don’t drink massive amounts of alcohol and fast food, but go ahead and eat some food you enjoy eating and have dessert too. This will shock your body out of its normal routine of eating, but just be sure to get back on your diet plan the following day.

20. Relax: Relax and be patient

20. Relax: Relax and be patient. Progress does not happen overnight. With careful planning and diligence your efforts will be rewarded so don’t worry too much about making giant leaps. Relax and enjoy the process.

Written by Brad Borland, MA, CSCS

Posted 16 September 2011 by Erick Ruiz Salgaldo

The Truth About

Saturated Fat

Saturated fat... the comeback?

How would you like some bacon with your eggs? Why use olive oil when you have Lard? How about some real butter on your fish? Sounds absurd, but so did the personal computer in the 80’s. Saturated fat is making a comeback in the fitness community and the reasons why may shock you.
Ever since the 80’s we have been led to believe that saturated fats are evil. It is often believed that if you eat saturated fat, such as animal fat, your heart will explode and your waist  will grow. So, if you want to stay healthy and fit, you should only consume plant-based fats such as vegetable oils and nuts, right? Not so fast.

Cultures from around the world have thrived on diets high in saturated fats for ages with far superior health than our own. Eskimo’s diets consist mainly of whale blubber, and yet they are not plagued by heart disease. The Samburu tribe in Kenya is known to consume up to 400 grams of animal fat daily. They too have very little fat related heart problems and do not suffer from weight problems. Even we Americans once had a diet that consisted of large amounts of animal fat. Guess what? We were more healthy and fit then than we are now!  Why the bad rap?

So, how did saturated fat get such a bad reputation?

A seven-country study, published in 1970, “supposedly” connected saturated fat to heart disease. The study, which was conducted by Ancel Keys, included the United States, Japan, Italy, Greece, Yugoslavia, Finland, and the Netherlands over a five year period. However, in three of the observed countries, the results did not support this conclusion. Since the study has been published, scientists have questioned the conclusion of the study.

Even though Ancel’s study was not fully supported, the American Government promoted the correlation between saturated fat and heart disease as fact. Once the government made a stand on this issue, the general public bought into this belief without much resistance or thought. Media outlets and medical experts bombarded the public with the idea that saturated fat was to be avoided, further solidifying the potentially falsely bad reputation associated with it. Fortunately for us, modern science is helping to shed a new light on this issue.
Modern Science

Modern science now reveals that stearic acid, palmitic acid, and lauric acid, fatty acids commonly found in saturated fat, are beneficial to our bodies. Stearic acid, which has no effect on cholesterol, converts to the same monounsaturated fat found in olive oil when metabolized. Palmitic and Lauric acid raise your cholesterol, but they raise more good (HDL) cholesterol than bad (LDL). LDL cholesterol has been proven to build plaque in the arteries, while HDL cleans plaque out of arteries. It is for these reasons that science now suggests that HDL/LDL ratios, not saturated fat consumption, is the leading predictor of future heart disease.
For fitness enthusiast this does not mean you should consume large amounts of saturated fats. Fats still contain more calories per gram than carbohydrates or proteins. However, this does not mean that you have to avoid animal fat like the black plague. After all, studies have shown that saturated fat does increase testosterone levels, and higher testosterone levels are essential to build an impressive body.

Get CutAndJacked with Saturated Fat

To get Cut and Jacked eat a diet high in protein, cycle your carbohydrates, and restrict your fat intake. A majority of your meat consumption should be from lean sources such as chicken, turkey, egg whites, and fish. With that being said, do not be afraid to eat some whole free ranged eggs or steak from grass feed cows. Remember, you must create a diet that works for you, so don’t be afraid to experiment with your fat consumption. Saturated fat is simply another tool you can use to get ripped.

Written by: Erick Ruiz Salgaldo


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