I made this post and subsequent video as a response to Science Lab members explaining how you can use a mostly fed approach to get your best fat loss gains over time. (Sorry the volume is so high)
1. The value of a low carbohydrate diet is basically that it pulls water/inflammation from your cells, and if you eat at a caloric deficit related to your energy output you CAN lose fat in the process.
2. The value of a high carbohydrate diet (at a caloric deficit) is that you maintain hydration levels within your body. The downside is that countering excess inflammation from a high carb diet requires you to drop your calories. In the end, people with high activity levels won’t have adequate energy.
4. When you diet down to get an extreme result, you are basically using up your “diet” trump card. You have two options at this point: you can attempt to maintain your current body fat percentage by upping your level of activity (possibly ending up hurt and sick), or you lower your calories further which will be equally harmful. Most people do some combination of the two.
5. If you eat adequate calories for a prolonged period of time it is favorable as it relates to muscle maintenance and muscle retention. This is the basis for what we teach at Eat To Perform.
6. If you are coming from a low carbohydrate or low calorie way of eating you will often gain weight as your muscles re-hydrate and become more functional. This doesn’t typically correlate with an increase in body fat, but the your jeans might fit a bit tighter. A full muscle is a bigger muscle!
7. Losing fat the right way requires you to throw out your misconceptions related to what you think you should weigh. Body fat tests (BOD POD, DXA) can help but often just signal people to make bad decisions trying to aim for a goal when they should aim for performance. A gradual approach to body recomposition through increased performance (form following function) is your best bet.
8. Here’s a strategy that CAN work: go for a period of time (let’s use three months as an example) with a goal of maintaining or slightly increasing you weight. A slight increase looks like 5 pounds or so. 10 pounds is probably too aggressive. After this period, your work capacity will have increased. Your muscles will be full, and you have now earned the right to eat less for a short period of time. Every person is different, but after you’ve taken the time to rehydrate your muscles and get your metabolic function in order, you can start to under eat in short bursts. For every month from that point forward you can take one week to get a little aggressive with calories and carbs to speed up the process of dropping body fat.