It’s easy to bounce around from diet to diet in a seemingly endless search for the one, out of thousands, that is going to be perfect for you. Instead of putting yourself through the agony of experimenting with vague, unscientific diets, you should try customizing a diet around your schedule. I have heard too many people trying diets, like the “no carbs after 2PM diet”, that are not tailored to their needs and may end up doing more harm than good. What if you work 2nd shift or exercise at night? Should these individuals follow it the same way as people that work 1st shift and exercise in the morning? I didn’t design the diet but I can certainly tell you the answer to it…NO.
So how do you base your diet around your schedule?
To be honest, the process of designing a diet based on EVERYTHING that you do can be tedious and extremely complicated. Thankfully, there is an easy way to make an efficient diet that takes the most important components into consideration. The trick is to time your carbohydrate intake around your workouts.
Why? Because Insulin said so! Hormones are the chemical messengers that your body uses to manage bodily functions, communicate between cells, and adapt to situations. And Insulin is the hormone that manages your blood sugar concentration. If you eat a sufficient amount of carbs and spike your blood sugar, your pancreas will release insulin to grab the glucose and store it in your cells. Insulin doesn’t stop there. It also makes your cells store fat and protein, while cutting off the metabolic pathways for burning fat and protein. It makes you store energy and prevents you from burning the sources that you already have.
So if insulin is the anabolic hormone that will make you grow and store, why not cut it out completely?
Because after an intense workout your body needs to replenish its glycogen stores and needs its muscle cells to take in protein to rebuild the muscle fibers that you just tore up. So after a workout, a high carb and high protein meal, or shake, will accomplish both of those feats. The insulin spike from the carbs will refill the glycogen stores that your body wants to keep full incase of an emergency, like if you were being hunted down by an angry bear. It will also help you recover faster and build muscle because of the increased uptake of amino acids/aka protein.
Outside of your post-workout meal, your body really doesn’t need excess carbs. If you are trying to lose weight, try minimizing the spikes of the anabolic hormone insulin by eating a higher fat diet with moderate amounts of protein and lots and lots of low carb veggies.
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