100 Carbs a Day
One of the simplest and yet ridiculously powerful dietary approaches that I've been recommending for years is 100 carbs or less. I've seen this work with everyone from hardcore bodybuilders to overweight, teenage babysitters and everyone in between.
This not only helps strip down body fat but it also helps to improve overall longevity and bodily function. The best part about this is that it's extremely easy to follow, you simply consume 100g of carbs or less every day.
But why is this so effective?
First off, 100g of carbs is low but not SUPER LOW which will keep you out of ketosis and will still keep your mind right. When carbs are dropped too low, I'm not sure about you but I get moody, irritated easily, and lack the energy to get through my day. By keeping 100 carbs in the diet, your metabolic furnace will be churning away at stored fats instead of carbs, this is a great thing for getting lean!
Also, 100g of carbs won't cause a large loss of intensity during strenuous workouts. Yes, you'll have to keep the volume lower but strength should remain the same which favors the overall muscle to fat ratio in the body and as we all know, muscle has a higher caloric expenditure than fat.
Following this type of diet is good for another reason as well, it also helps regulate total calorie intake without even thinking about it. Since most foods people really enjoy are higher in carbs than anything else, limiting carbohydrates generally leads to a drop in overall calories at day's end.
Aside from naturally limiting calories, lower carb intake also keeps insulin lower which improves insulin sensitivity and nutrient partitioning or regulating where all the nutrients go. I’ll break this down in a future article about manipulating bodily systems but nutrient partioning is great for strength training individuals who want most nutrients to be used by the muscles and not stored like a spare tire.
There is a downside to this approach though so don't go praising this as the holy grail of dieting. Even though you're consuming 100g of carbs a day, it's not enough to keep Leptin levels stable. Over time, Leptin levels will drop which in turn, will slow fat loss. I’ve actually explained this briefly in my previous article, “Weight loss simplified.”
...But what do I do now?
Up-regulating Leptin, thankfully, is an easy procedure. All you have to do to reset your hormone levels and prime them for fat burning is up your carbohydrate and calorie intake. This is according to a Nov. 2000 study from the Institute of Physiology, at the University of Lausanne, Switzerland which states that carbohydrates are the foremost macronutrient that affects plasma leptin concentrations over all macronutrients.
This is where the coveted "cheat meal" comes into play. Once you've been dieting for a prolonged period (4-5+ weeks), fat loss will stall. When this happens, a cheat day or as I call, a refeed day is more than necessary. People approach this strategy in many ways but the most effective and diet friendly way is stay within specific calorie guidelines.
I know you're drooling at the thought of pizza and burgers right now but this isn't the groundwork for an effective refeed. To use this technique at its maximum efficiency, I recommend only going over your BMR+TDEE (basal metabolic rate + total daily exercise expenditure) by 500-750 calories which you'll comprise of your normal protein intake, high carbs (simple carbs), and minimal fats.
By following this advice, you'll be sure to fire up the metabolism again without adding unnecessary fat which could very well, set you back a few days or even weeks depending on how little self-control you have.
This type of diet is very effective for almost anyone and has literally one rule...