The to the Point Version
Lower (not eliminate completely damn it) carbs, increase fats, eat moderate (not high) protein.
When you’re trying to get into single digit body fat, tracking calories play a role. The leaner you get, the more minute changes you have to make the see the slightest of drops. For most people, those first 20+ pounds come down to quality of food.
I had a friend that SWORE “no diet works” and he’ll never lose weight. After resisting me, I had him record a couple days of his typical eating.
300-400 grams of carbs
60 grams of protein
50 grams of fat
This isn’t unique to him. This his how people actually eat. For those familiar with macros, you’ll notice that breakdown is absolutely ridiculous. Some BODYBUILDERS don’t even consume that many carbs (especially that little protein). Carbs are a fuel source. Once muscle and liver glycogen stores are full, it all gets sent to fat storage. For someone who isn’t even doing anything to earn that fuel source, it’s basically overfilling a gas tank…
..except this gas tank just holds onto the extra fuel as dead weight. Which means they’re getting insulin resistance, insane blood spikes throughout the day (followed by brain fog and bloat), and no satiety at all. Stupid Americans.
On top of that, it’s all processed carbs and more than half that 300+ intake consists of sugar to worsen the condition. No nutrients, no fiber to slow down the process, no good bacteria to absorb the nutrients. These are the same people who then drop to zero carbs, keep everything else the same, and run 1 hour a day on the treadmill and can’t figure out why they feel like shit and aren’t losing weight.
So, how do we fix this?
To the Point...and Then Some Version - THE GUT
Now to the good stuff. There are more than a trillion bacteria in your gut. A TRILLION. You need this diversity to send the right signals to your brain whether its fullness (leptin), or keeping your brain functioning properly (serotonin, dopamine).
Remove anything from your nutrition that interferes with a healthy microbial balance or causes glucose or other nutrients to leak through the gut wall causing all that brain fog and bloat.
Food sensitivities (if you have them)- dairy, sugar, eggs, gluten, grains, etc.
Preservatives, additives (our bodies don’t know how to interpret these. As a result we respond to it the way we’d respond to getting a cut. White blood cells go out trying to combat them and cause chronic inflammation thinking its an invader when it’s just food that went to the wrong place)
Artificial sweeteners (yes believe it or not studies are showing these are messing up the gut biome. So you may not be taking in extra sugar, but you’re causing just as much damage in the long run)
Excess carbohydrate intake. Most individuals don’t handle carbs well (aka what I call us non-skinny folks who say if we’ll gain weight if we even look at carbs). Most individuals only need 100-150 grams (unless you’re very active). Relax, your glycogen stores aren’t getting THAT depleted so stfu and stop exaggerating.
**Huge misunderstanding** - people lower carbs without increase something else. You DO need a fuel source dum-dum. Increase the fats as it will allow our bodies to resensitize to insulin and use fats as a more dominant fuel source. Moderately increase protein (.82 grams has been found to be the max optimal intake even for lifters. Any more than that hasn’t proven to be more beneficial.)
Don’t freak out. I know your meathead taught brain is like “Duuuude. Total opposite advice from what the magazines say duuddee i'm freaking outttt bruh.”
Also, since you’ll be eating predominantly more fats and proteins, the body will need proper stomach acid and enzymes to break this food down. This is big. Make sure you’re drinking a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar, or aiding with digestive enzyme pills otherwise you won’t get the mad gainz man.
Probiotics - Kimchi, sauerkraut, pickles, Kombucha. These are all great sources of probiotics to help reintroduce the good bacteria that populate the gut. KEEP IN MIND, don’t go crazy on any one source (you silly kombucha lovers). The gut needs a VARIETY not just 1-2 strains of bacteria.
Prebiotics - This feeds the probiotics so that they can flourish and do their job in your gut. These will be resistant starches usually a fiber. Green bananas, plantains, garlic, onions, are all examples of prebiotics you can consume.
4) REPAIR - Bonus Round
For those that already know they have gut lining issues, there are extra steps you can take to strengthen your gut (although everyone can benefit from this).
Lower inflammation by taking herbs like turmeric and curcumin.
Restore the gut lining with supplements like glutamine, and omega 3 rich sources (wild caught salmon, walnuts, almonds, macadamia) as well as from the high fiber vegetables like asparagus, garlic, radishes, and onions.
When you re-adjust your macro breakdown to that of one higher in fat, LOWER (not low, or even zero like people seem to wanna think) carbohydrates, and moderate protein you will notice, not only does the weight start to go down, but you will feel f**kin amazing.
All those mid afternoon crashes will be gone, and the headaches and skin rashes you were getting magically go away. If you really wanna see how far you’ve come, trying having a typical high processed, high carb meal once you’ve adjusted and take note of how you feel. Shitty? Well guess what, unbeknownst to you that’s actually how you were operating your entire life. You just got used to it.