Wednesday, June 27, 2007

What's new + Interview

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* IFRP is now Leangains. Why? I thought Intermittent Fasting Recomp Protocol sounded overpretentious and gimmicky. Leangains is like honey on the tongue, can you taste it? I bet you can. Don't act like you can't.

* I bought www.leangains.com where my upcoming website will be located. I have a great guy working on it, hopefully it will be complete with forums, articles section and everything. Stay tuned for more info on that one.

* Leangains Q&A coming up later this week.

* 10/7: Added more testimonials.

* 10/7: Added some lifting vids from november. Squatting in chinos, 390 lbs for 4 reps, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yDCj7M3d0bM and an attempt at a 555 lbs deadlift: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lYAQLPSgRnc. Im stronger now, and I´ll have some new vids up soon to prove it. For some reason I can't get the links to work so just copy and paste the link in your browser, while I try to fix it.

So that's it for now. Keep checking in for some good stuff and information about the upcoming book on Leangains/Intermittent Fasting with nutrition guru Lyle McDonald.

In the mean time, here's an excerpt from BB nutrition roundtable part 2 out of Jamie Hale's upcoming book "Knowledge and nonsense: the science of nutrition and exercise" (www.maxcondition.com)

Bodybuilder Nutrition Roundtable 2

J Hale: Many competitive bbers seem to have a fear of consuming dairy pre-contest. Assuming they have no intolerances or allergies to dairy products do you feel this fear is warranted?

M Berkhan: No. There is nothing “fattening” about dairy related to insulin or whatever bullshit some gurus make up in order to rationalize their stance on dairy pre-contest. Questioning of these gurus “wisdom” is an unknown concept for many competitors, allowing old superstitions spread like wildfire among the bodybuilding community. It's a tired old myth which should have been dead a long time ago, especially considering the studies pointing to calcium, of which there is plenty in dairy, accelerating fat loss rather than a negative impact .

There might be other reasons for cutting dairy, high sodium content causing water retention and so forth, but nothing related to metabolic factors. However, since bodybuilders tends to become extremely obsessive in the pre-contest period, one may opt to cut dairy in order to minimize “inefficient” carbohydrates (lactose, which gets stored in the liver rather than muscle) just like some bodybuilders will cut fruit in order to avoid fructose. Therefore, they go to great length ensuring that they make the most out of their carbohydrate calories, cutting both dairy and fruit. The necessity of this could be questioned. It’s like pissing in the ocean and fearing the sea level may rise.

J Hale: What are your thoughts on pre-contest fat loading? Have you used this strategy with bodybuilders? Is there any Primary Scientific evidence supporting benefits of fat-loading for bbers?

M Berkhan: I don't have enough practical experience with this, in order to offer any valuable opinion, but some off my competing friends swears by, what would probably be termed, “junk-loading”; basically eating a mixture of high carbohydrates and high fat on contest day (rice crackers or bananas with peanut butter for example). I think it holds benefit to load on both carbohydrates and fat, seeing that muscle holds not only glycogen but also triglycerides. Since insulin has edematogenic properties, sky high insulin levels may lead to water retention; raising fat intake, on behalf of adding more carbohydrates, may be “playing it safe” and avoiding the culprits of loading on carbohydrates only.

J Hale: Should bbers eat clean (non processed whole foods) all the time when preparing for contest? Assuming calorie and macro levels are same from so-called dirty or clean foods if in calorie deficit does it matter?

M Berkhan: From a purely physiological standpoint it probably doesn’t matter if you’re including foods in your diet that may be labelled as unclean by the generic bodybuilder. As long as protein remains a constant, a comparison of two diets where the rest would be made up by either “clean” or “unclean foods”, would show no measurable difference in fat loss in the short term. There might be some long term effects on body composition on a diet where fat and carbohydrate food choices are the worst possible (think trans fats and high fructose corn syrup), but these extremes are not relevant to discuss in this context, since I don’t think any competing bodybuilder subsist on such foods to a significant degree pre contest. Saying that, I do think one should opt for food choices that has satiating and nutritive properties in relation to their caloric content. These foods will in most cases be made up with foods that are traditionally labelled as “clean”. However, I do think having cheat meals, or “unclean” foods, at least once a week has benefits in terms of adherence and sanity during the pre-contest diet (or any other diet for that matter).


J Hale: Many Contest Prep Specialists promote the use of mega doses of BCAAs even when in positive calorie balance and eating a ton of protein. Have you seen any evidence or is there a logical reason to assume BCAAs from supplements are superior to BCAAs found in food?

M Berkhan: No. You will get plenty off BCAA’s from food protein sources, especially whey protein, and there is nothing showing any benefit of excessive dosing. Since BCAA’s are very glucogenic, they will most likely end up in your blood stream as glucose. Bodybuilders eating piles of protein and consuming BCAA's on the side are throwing money down the drain.

J Hale: Casein vs. Whey. Which one do you like or do you like both? Explain.

M Berkhan: Casein. Long lasting anti-catabolic properties makes it the ideal protein source for almost all occasions. A mixture of whey and casein would be the best choice post workout.

J Hale: Any thoughts on the supposed magic properties of grapefruit for fat loss ? One popular supplement company swears by it.

M Berkhan: I've seen the studies and there seems to be some measurable effect on fat loss, but I have yet to hear about someone noticing anything special from taking grapefruit supplements.



Martin Berkhan has pioneered the concept of intermittent fasting, in combination with weightlifting, in order to improve body composition. The diet has sparked controversy and is the antithesis of the traditional, high meal frequency diets usually employed by bodybuilders.

Martin Berkhan is a personal trainer and magazine writer, living in Sweden. He has a bachelor's degree in Medical Sciences and Education, with a major in Public Health Sciences.

2 comments:

Andrew said...

well I'm sold, where do I sign up?

Martin Berkhan said...

martinberkhan@gmail.com




My name is Martin Berkhan and I work as a nutritional consultant, magazine writer and personal trainer.

Welcome to the Internet's leading resource on intermittent fasting and all things related.


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