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  1. #1
    vinceh4 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Is it true ketogenic diets cannibalize muscle?

    This is what I have heard. Muscle cannot use the ketone fat fuel, so it creates glycogen from muscle tissue.

    But I also have heard that the heart can work off of this fuel. Seems contradictory. Anyone know?

  2. #2
    D-Rock is offline Senior Member
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    Most of your body can run off of fatty acids and ketones, but there is some glucose that is required. Your body can convert protein to glucose, and if you are consuming enough in your diet, it won't cannibalize your muscles.

  3. #3
    vinceh4 is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by D-Rock View Post
    Most of your body can run off of fatty acids and ketones, but there is some glucose that is required. Your body can convert protein to glucose, and if you are consuming enough in your diet, it won't cannibalize your muscles.

    Which does the body go for 1st, muscle or excess protien that is ingested?

  4. #4
    avilezj is offline Senior Member
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    excess protein ingested is sent away.
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  5. #5
    Seb V-G is offline Senior Member
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    I wouldn't think so, I mean if your body adapts to burning fat as fuel, it will surely go for free fatty acids or adipose tissue since it would be much easier than breaking down muscle to break that down to amino acids to convert it to glucose. Plus you'd be getting double energy from one gram of fat than carb/protein.

    I like high fat diets, with like 2 carb load meals during the week. Did a bulking cycle (pavel's delorme routine) with this kind of diet and gained 20 lbs with people still complimenting on how lean/ripped I was, so I know I didn't gain too much fat, and gained enough muscle

    Hope it helps,
    Seb

  6. #6
    Steve Freides is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by vinceh4 View Post
    Is it true ketogenic diets cannibalize muscle?
    No.

    -S-
    KBNJ.COM - Steve Freides, RKC II

  7. #7
    mc
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    Well, just to expand steve's "no" a little bit more -

    ANY diet that gets to starvation level caloric input (50% of calories needed for maintenance of current weight or less) will cause fat stores to be protected and other sources of fuel (like muscle or even bone) to be catabolized for fuel.

    This is why it's really important when both dieting and working out to watch the caloric balance to stay above starvation level.

    The irony is, when above that level, the body feels much safer to shed the fat stores, and folks will often experience an increased rate of fat loss by eating a bit more when working out and dieting if they've been at that super low level.

    A typical case is a woman given the typical 1200 cal/day diet, and then she starts working out and is really depressed because the weight doesn't seem to be moving.

    Get her calories up to 1450 or 1600 or god no even 2000 (based on her workouts) and suddenly the weight loss starts to accelerate.

    hope that helps.

    best
    mc

    ps lyle mcdonald's ketogenic diet is an excellent reference for, well, ketogenic approaches to dieting. great explanations of what's happening in the body.
    mc, phd, cscs,
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  8. #8
    vinceh4 is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by mc View Post
    Well, just to expand steve's "no" a little bit more -

    ANY diet that gets to starvation level caloric input (50% of calories needed for maintenance of current weight or less) will cause fat stores to be protected and other sources of fuel (like muscle or even bone) to be catabolized for fuel.

    This is why it's really important when both dieting and working out to watch the caloric balance to stay above starvation level.

    The irony is, when above that level, the body feels much safer to shed the fat stores, and folks will often experience an increased rate of fat loss by eating a bit more when working out and dieting if they've been at that super low level.

    A typical case is a woman given the typical 1200 cal/day diet, and then she starts working out and is really depressed because the weight doesn't seem to be moving.

    Get her calories up to 1450 or 1600 or god no even 2000 (based on her workouts) and suddenly the weight loss starts to accelerate.

    hope that helps.

    best
    mc

    ps lyle mcdonald's ketogenic diet is an excellent reference for, well, ketogenic approaches to dieting. great explanations of what's happening in the body.
    Thanks mc, this helps a great deal. I have never counted a calorie in my life, just grams of protein, fat, carbs and sugar. I finally pulled up a calorie counter. Given my weight and activity, I need 2300-2700 for maintenance, depending.

    That's 3-4 double cheeseburgers, about.

    I looked at what I eat when I eat clean, it is woefully inadequate. It is around 1400-1700 calories at best. The problem is (no longer), I feel satiated on a fat/protein/low carb diet at this calorie amount. I mean, no breakfast, early workout, milk for recovery with a banana, a piece of fruit for the afternoon, maybe some more a little later or some nuts or a little cheese, then a big meal of steak, salmon or chicken, plus tons of veggies and oil, sometimes a little potato.

    This is nothing according to a couple of online calculators. I mean it is easily under 2000 calories most of the time.

    When eating clean with no grain, the amount of food I would have to eat in 2-3 meals to get to, let's say 2500 calories/day is insane. I can do it no problem with pizza, beer etc, but with real food, and all of the fiber and water (if it's uncooked and fresh), hell, that's a lot of food.

    Eating a good, clean, low carb diet at my calorie needs would cost the same as feeding a small nation in some parts of the world! I am going to have to give it up for that reason alone. As a matter of fact, I recently have, and I feel like crap. Been eating more fruit, trying to get more bang for the buck, and I feel great then crash. It's a vicious cycle.

    I guess I am going to go back to grains, and , count calories

  9. #9
    mc
    mc is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by vinceh4 View Post
    Thanks mc, this helps a great deal. I have never counted a calorie in my life, just grams of protein, fat, carbs and sugar. I finally pulled up a calorie counter. Given my weight and activity, I need 2300-2700 for maintenance, depending.

    (snip)
    Eating a good, clean, low carb diet at my calorie needs would cost the same as feeding a small nation in some parts of the world! I am going to have to give it up for that reason alone. As a matter of fact, I recently have, and I feel like crap. Been eating more fruit, trying to get more bang for the buck, and I feel great then crash. It's a vicious cycle.

    I guess I am going to go back to grains, and count calories
    Ah!

    look sport, there is NOTHING wrong with carbohydrates as part of a balanced eating plan. In fact, you will find that athletes training hard are eating form 60-80% carbs for the reason you site: energy.

    Carbs are not UNCLEAN! - refined foods have problems, granted, but you can get nice lots of rich carb sources from good stuff.

    Without carbohydrates, it is really hard to get the calories needed to do the work you want of it. This is why every athletic strength and conditioning association (NSCA, ASCM, NASM) recommends a higher carb diet for athletes.

    There's a reason michael phelps eats a zillion calories a day from high carb dense foods: he's using that fuel as ENERGY all day long.

    He's getting his other nutrients too, but for calories, he's getting them from carb dense sources.

    THE BODY PREFERS CARBS FOR FUEL FOR ATHLETIC EFFORT. This is why endurance runners spend so much time upping vo2max levels so they can be carb-sparing - since they run longer than their glycogen stores would last they try to stay oxidative - using fat to spare that precious sugar for their last gas blast. seriously.

    So if you are in that position where you need the fuel, get the fuel. Lentils, potatoes, yams, beans are all clear, all higher carb, and pizza - really good pizza which is hard to find - is a dam fine thing too.

    Now on that descant, i have absolutely no difficulty in getting folks onto 3500-4000kcals a day with "clean" eating 2500 ain't nothin'

    if you need help getting that going, pm me, or by all means check out precision nutrition (40 page overview), as it's also designed for athletes in the individualization program. tho i'm sure you'll hear from folks here too who have similar caloric density needs and do just fine with the WD. your call how it works for you.

    be gentle with yourselves: you're not weak because you want some starchy carbs

    mc
    mc, phd, cscs,
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  10. #10
    Semonides is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by vinceh4 View Post
    When eating clean with no grain, the amount of food I would have to eat in 2-3 meals to get to, let's say 2500 calories/day is insane. I can do it no problem with pizza, beer etc, but with real food, and all of the fiber and water (if it's uncooked and fresh), hell, that's a lot of food.

    Eating a good, clean, low carb diet at my calorie needs would cost the same as feeding a small nation in some parts of the world! I am going to have to give it up for that reason alone. As a matter of fact, I recently have, and I feel like crap. Been eating more fruit, trying to get more bang for the buck, and I feel great then crash. It's a vicious cycle.

    I guess I am going to go back to grains, and , count calories

    few observations: you need to get party-tough on eating. If someone said they wanted to press the 32kg but after a few reps, it feels so darned heavy, we would tell that person to stop being a little wussy and just do their ladders. Same thing with the food: just eat that pile! I understand; when looking at a 1/4 head of cabbage it looks insurmountable. But I just put my food into it, as they say in Louisiana. I get stuffed, but no harm done; most of it will end up in the toilet anyway.

    Grains are a good filler, but they are not necessarily a foregone conclusion. I do enjoy some millet or barley once in a while, but most of my calories come from cups upon cups of beans, from handfuls of raw nuts, and from hemp seeds.

    As you can see from that previous paragraph, I do not eat meat and still get my 2700 kcals. If I added meat, it would be childs play to get my kcals. All that and no grains--unless, of course, you want to do grains.

    Lastly, I spend about 25 a week on food. Eating good does not necessarily have to be dear.

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