How to beat yo-yo dieting at Prolean Wellness

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Low Carb, High Fat and High Performance?

Traditional teaching says that endurance athletes benefit from eating a high carbohydrate diet because the carbohydrates function as fuel for sustained activities. The body is capable of storing a relatively small reservoir of carbohydrate in the form of glycogen within the liver and muscles.

When an athlete runs out of this glycogen reserve, blood sugar levels drop and performance suffers; potentially profoundly so. Marathon runners speak of "bonking" or "hitting the wall" when carbohydrate reserves are depleted. In extreme cases, the athlete can become confused and even lose continence of their bowels. Clearly, the situation needs to be avoided.

The usual manner that athletes avoid "the wall" is to enhance carbohydrate stores in the form of glycogen by eating a high carbohydrate diet because to some degree, the more carbs you eat, the more you store. Also athletic training enhances one's ability to store glycogen. So far, so good but even highly trained athletes eating a high carb diet can only store about 2000 calories of glycogen. Herein lies the problem.
The body always burns a mix of fuels, mostly fat and carbohydrates. Even the most lean person, has plenty of energy in the form of fat. An extremely lean 200 pound man with 10% body fat has 20 pounds of fat. Each pound of fat has 3500 calories. Twenty pounds has 70,000 calories which is enough energy to run 700 miles!

The glitch is that when carbohydrate stores are depleted, even with plenty of stored energy in the form of fat, the athlete will "bonk" and likely will be unable to continue or at the very least, performance will suffer. This is not desirable two thirds of the way into a marathon. A carbohydrate dependent athlete cannot fully access the vast reservoir of energy that their body has in the form of fat. In other words, his body is trained to burn carbs and not fat.
The usual strategy has been to simply eat a lot of carbs. Rather than relying on carbs, the athlete should adapt their bodies to maximizing the utilization of fat by eating very little carbohydrate, no more than 50 grams per day. That is not very much. A single apple has thirty.

The process of fat adapting the body typically requires at least two weeks. Once the body has adapted, tremendous increases of endurance are the result. Part of this process entails a rise in serum ketones which are a breakdown product of fat. Ketones are excellent fuel for the brain and heart. Typically physicians become very animated that ketosis is harmful. What they fail to realize is that the benign state of nutritional ketosis is completely different than the life-threatening state of diabetic ketoacidosis.

By adapting to a low carbohydrate, high fat diet, the athletes burn more fat and ketones and relatively less carbohydrate unleashing huge energy reserves and obviating the danger of "the wall". Athletes that adopt this approach report huge gains in performance and well-being. There are other benefits of this approach including reduced oxidative stress and cell membrane damage from high volume exercise. Such a diet will improve issues with glucose sensitivity and improve body composition with less fat and more muscle.

At Prolean Wellness, we know how well this principal works. We often substitute MCT oil in for the carbs and our clients have seen huge energy gains while keeping the carbs at bay. MCT oil is just one of the fantastic tools we have at our disposal to promote extremely quick FAT loss while preserving that ever-so-precious muscle mass. With the iDXA Body Composition Scan, we are able to track muscle gains down to the gram so we know how to get the outcomes our clients desire.

If you would like to know more about how to burn fat and maintain or build lean muscle, contact us at Prolean Wellness. Our phone number is (480)477-6334 and more information can be found on our website at     www.ProLeanWellness.com.
 
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