You are working out regularly. Your training program is great. And still, you are not getting the results you want. What are you doing wrong?
It would help if you made changes in your diet. To build and maintain a healthy body, you need a diet with well-balanced protein and carbs!
There are many myths and misconceptions considering the appropriate diet for people that are trying to get muscle mass and reduce body fat.
One of those misconceptions is that carbs are evil for you if you are trying to lose weight. This is partially right. Of course, reducing the intake of carbs causes weight loss for all those people that are very overweight.
However, for those people that want to gain muscle mass with a very low percentage of body fat, carbs are a necessary part of the process.
This is the reason why: during the training, we are using the cells that are full of glycogen as our energy supplies. Glycogen is one of the basic parts of carbs.
Both carbs and protein are essential for your health. Any diet that deprives you of one or the other over a long period can be very damaging for your health.
How Many Carbs And When?
Your brain, your kidneys, and your heart depend on carbs for energy to function correctly. If you are on a diet that does not include enough carbs, your body will take extreme measures to get the energy it needs and will start feeding on carbs stored in muscles, and it will chemically break down the protein you eat until they look and act like carbs.
This will lead to muscle loss and put extra strain on the kidneys as the body works to dispose of under protein by-products. So, when you are working out, you have to have a certain supply of carbs in glycogen reserves.
When the body uses all the energy out of those reserves, it will switch to the next supply of energy, and those are fats, and that is the goal of the workout.
If you start working out with a large supply of carbs in your body, it will just draw the energy out of carbs and will not have the need to go for other energy resources such as fat.
Here comes the question, how many carbs we should eat during the day? Best is to start with approximately two grams per one kilogram of body weight and start your workouts.
If the results are not good and do not satisfy you, you should reduce the intake of carbs per o.5 grams each week until you do not get the satisfactory amount at which your metabolism won’t be slow, and your body will start using body fat as an energy resource.
As for the time, you should avoid eating carbs after 5 pm. After that time, our metabolism is slower, and the need for food and energy is reduced so it can happen that the body will use the carbs for energy during the night instead of fat what it should do.
This does not apply to those that are working out in late evening hours and want to gain muscle mass. Let’s say that you’re working out between 7 pm and 9 pm; of course, you will need to eat some carbs and protein after your workout.
You have to do that to prevent the levels of cortisol from rising since cortisol slows down your metabolism and stops the progress in muscle mass gain.
When your metabolism is slow, there are high chances that your body will start piling up fat. So if you are working out late and want to gain muscle mass, you need to eat carbs but try to get them from free sugar like dextrose.
Optimum amount in such late hours should be about 50 grams of dextrose. If you notice that you’re muscle growth is at a stagnation raise that amount to 70-80 grams and start taking whey protein after the workouts.
Do not get me wrong! Carbs don’t help us to build up muscles that is done by protein. Carbs only help to keep muscles full of glycogen and to speed up metabolism.
Carbs also raise the level of insulin, which directly increases the absorption of protein that we consumed with carbs, and that leads to the raising of levels of testosterone.
All of those that want to lose weight in this healthy way where the body is not exposed to any stress should know how to combine good carbs with other food.
If you, for example, eat good carbs such as broccoli, carrots, and mushrooms, which are full of fiber and combine them with baked turkey, you will have the opposite effect of what you desire. For the best result, this kind of carbs should only be combined with boiled meat.
In case you combine rice as a source of carbs with baked or boiled chicken many processes in your body will be in the state of emergency since the body needs to use all of its functions to digest that kind of combination of protein and carbs and that leaves very little room to manipulate with calorie intake.
Just imagine how much you would have to work out to burn all those calories and bring your body to calorie deficit, and only calorie deficit can help you healthily lose weight.
So to lose weight, a healthy combination would be boiled meat such as chicken breast and fiber such as broccoli, carrots, peas…
It is very simple if we want to lose weight, we need to burn more calories than we consumed. Also, if it’s our goal to build up our muscle mass, we need more protein. If your only goal is to lose weight, your training should be based on cardio with a bit of weight training.
Protein is the raw material that your body uses to produce and maintain healthy muscles, bones, hair, and skin. If you are not taking enough protein, you start losing muscle mass, you become weak, and it becomes hard for your body to fight off illnesses.
The average daily need for protein for an adult person is between 60 and 80 grams. The best sources of protein are meat, fish, eggs, milk, cheese…
What you should know is that even a lot of protein can make you overweight. It’s not only the carbs that are bad.
Protein can also be piled up as fat in your body, though not as quickly and not as much as carbs, but it still happens, and instead of losing weight as you expected, you start gaining it. So, be careful and moderate in everything you eat.
If you have a healthy diet with balanced carbs and protein, and if you work out regularly, you will healthily lose weight. It will not happen overnight; it takes at least a month to see any results, but this is the healthiest way to lose unwanted kilograms and not get them back.
One more important thing is, this kind of diet will not make you hungry all day long, which is a significant psychological factor since people that are tired of all sorts of exhausting diets usually give up and go back to old habits of unhealthy eating.