Nutrition Lectures

September 16, 2019

THE CALORIC BALANCE - HOW TO BULK OR CUT

There is nearly no other topic that is discussed as much as dieting. You can find 100s of diets out there. Keto, low carb, high carb, high fat, paleo, intermitted fasting and many more. People often get confused with so many different diets. How should I eat? Can I eat carbs and still loose weight? These and many other questions bother people and athletes all day.


But you know what? It is actually super simple. The principle behind EVERY diet is the same. The secret is always the caloric balance. 

What is the caloric balance?


The caloric balance is the ratio of your consumed and burned calories. If you consumed more calories (energy) than you burned, you will gain weight. If you cosume less calories than your body burned, you will loose weight. That's it. What all the diets promise works only with this principle. Low carb diets work, because if you cut your carbs, you cut your whole caloric intake and will most likely end up in a caloric deficit. Which mean you loose weight. But on the other hand, if you eat low carb but still conusme more energy than you burned by eating too much fats, you will increase your weight, even if you sticked to low carb. Same goes for all other diet concepts. So in the end, for the weight management it is not so important what you eat, as long as you eat enough or less enough. 


How much deficit/surplus do I need?


This is actually a pretty hard question, since there are no general values. It depends on several factors:

  1. How much time do you have to hit your wished weight?
  2. How much diet stress can withstand?
  3. How important is perfomance in your training?
  4. How much time can you put into your nutrition?

Why are these questions relevant for the amount of calories you need?

1. The more time you have, the less big needs to be your surplus or deficit to gain or loose weight. This also means tracking doesn't need to be as much on point as it woud have to be if you are under time pressure.

2. The less stress you can withstand, the less caloric deficit I would recommend you. Caloric deficit is basically controlled starving. This means stress for your body. The higher the deficit, the more stress. So if you have no experience with diets, start with lower deficits and see how your body will react.

3. If performance is important, you need to take more care about the surplus, deficit and also macro nutrients. For example the amount of carbs needs you need to get your training results, the amount of protein you need to not loose muscles in your diet etc. For protein values, check the protein article. Carbs will be discussed later in a different article.

4. If you don't have the time to prepare your meals or track your nutrition, you need to rethink your diet concepts. You will most likely will not be able to run a strict diet. So if your time is limited, take it easy and plan more long term and don't wish for fast results.


To sum this up: To decide how much deficit or surplus you need to hit your goals needs to be discussed for every individual case. But what all have in common is, that you need information about your nutrition to adjust the parameters. So my advice: Start to track your nutrition to get a feeling for it. How much calories to you consume? How much protein? How much fat? These are values you need to evaluate your nutrition and upcoming diets.

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September 10, 2019

MY SUPPLEMENTS - MICHA SCHULZ

In this article I want to present you the supplements I use, why I use them and how much of them I use. The introduction texts of every supplement is taken from www.examine.com since they summed it up better than I can. Protein supps are not part of this list. Read the protein intake article if you want more information about protein.


1. FISH OIL:

"Fish oil is a a source of omega-3 fatty acids. It reduces triglycerides, but does not seem to affect the rate of cardiovascular events. It seems to notably reduce the symptoms of depression and improve some painful, inflammatory conditions."

- I take 3g of EHA/DPA daily. I myself noticed better skin and less pain in my joints since I supplement fish oil in this dose. 

2. VITAMINE K2 & D3

"Vitamin K is an essential vitamin found in plants or produced from intestinal bacteria. It plays an essential role in bone health and regulates blood clotting.
The Recommended Daily Intake (RDI) of vitamin K is sufficient to support healthy blood coagulation. Higher levels of vitamin K, however, provide benefits for cardiovascular and bone health. Unfortunately, it is difficult to obtain high levels of vitamin K from food alone. Most people don’t like natto enough to eat 50g a day, so supplementation of vitamin K is a popular option."
"Vitamin D is a fat-soluble essential vitamin that our skin synthesizes when exposed to the sun. It benefits us in many ways, from bone health to mood.
Supplemental vitamin D is associated with a wide range of benefits, including increased cognition, immune health, bone health and well-being. Supplementation can also reduce the risks of cancer, heart disease, diabetes and multiple sclerosis. People deficient in vitamin D may also experience increased testosterone levels after supplementation."

- I take 100μg of vitamin D and 200μg of vitamin K daily. Mostly because I don't get much sun in my daily life and to keep my heart healthy.

3. MAGNESIUM

"Magnesium is a dietary mineral. Magnesium deficiencies are the second most common deficiency in developed countries, the first being vitamin D. A lack of magnesium will raise blood pressure and reduce insulin sensitivity."

- I take 200mg of magnesium daily since I have the feeling it helps me to avoid muscle cramps and supports my regeneration.

4. CREATINE

"Creatine is a molecule that's produced in the body from amino acids. It's primarily made in the liver and to a lesser extent in the kidneys and pancreas. It stores high-energy phosphate groups in the form of phosphocreatine which are donated to ADP, regenerating it to ATP, the primary energy carrier in the body. This role in energy production is particularly relevant under conditions of high energy demand such as intense physical or mental activity.Creatine can be found in some foods and is most prevalent in meat and fish. Athletes commonly take it as a powder or in capsules.
The primary benefit of creatine is an improvement in strength and power output during resistance exercise. For this purpose, creatine is well-researched, and the effects are quite notable for a supplement. When used in conjunction with resistance exercise, creatine may modestly increase lean mass. It has also been tested for anaerobic running capacity in many studies, the results of which are fairly mixed but generally suggest a small improvement in performance."

- I try to get around 20g of creatine weekly. The daily dose varies between 0-5g since I only keep an eye on the weekly average.

5. ASHWAGANDHA

"Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) is an herb used in Ayurveda, the traditional medicine of India. Its root has a horsey smell (in Sanskrit, ashva means “horse” and gandha means “smell”) and is said to confer the strength and virility of a horse. Various parts of the plant are used, but the most common in supplements is an extract of its roots. 
 What are Ashwagandha's benefits?
 A number of studies suggest that it has anxiolytic (anti-anxiety) effects; studies are mostly supportive of a notable effect of ashwagandha for this purpose, and it seems to reduce cortisol levels. However, more research is needed before we can have a great deal of confidence in it or know the optimal dose. Ashwagandha may also be able to reduce insomnia, fatigue, and the symptoms of depression, but it hasn't been well-researched for these purposes.It may increase power output in untrained subjects during resistance exercise and anaerobic running, but this observation is based on a small amount of research and more is needed. It may lead to small reductions in blood glucose, blood pressure, and LDL-cholesterol, while slightly increasing HDL-cholesterol. Additionally, it may modestly increase testosterone and sperm quality in infertile men."

- I started using this in a phase when I experienced a really high fatigue in my workout. I use the KSM66 form and take between 500-1000mg daily depending on my stress level. 

6. CAFFEINE

"Caffeine comes from coffee beans, but it can also be synthesized in a laboratory. It has the same structure whether it’s in coffee, energy drinks, tea or pills.Caffeine is a powerful stimulant, and it can be used to improve physical strength and endurance. It is classified as a nootropic because it sensitizes neurons and provides mental stimulation.Habitual caffeine use is also associated with a reduced risk of Alzheimer's, cirrhosis, and liver cancer.Caffeine’s main mechanism concerns antagonizing adenosine receptors. Adenosine causes sedation and relaxation when it acts upon its receptors, located in the brain. Caffeine prevents this action and causes alertness and wakefulness. This inhibition of adenosine can influence the dopamine, serotonin, acetylcholine, and adrenaline systems.Habitual caffeine use leads to tolerance. This means the effects of caffeine will be diminished, often to the point where the only benefit a user experiences is caffeine’s anti-sleep effect. This is an ‘insurmountable’ tolerance, which means more caffeine will not overcome it. A month-long break from caffeine will reduce tolerance."

- I supplement 200-300mg of caffeine before every workout to enhance my focus and performance.

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September 10, 2019

HOW MUCH PROTEIN SHOULD I EAT?

"How much daily protein you need depends on your weight, goal, and level of physical activity: from 1.2 g/kg if you’re sedentary all the way up to 3.3 g/kg if you’re trying to minimize fat gain while bulking."


• If you’re sedentary, aim for at least 1.2 g/kg (0.54 g/lb). Keep in mind that your body composition will improve more if you add consistent activity, especially resistance training, than if you merely hit a protein target. 

• If you’re of healthy weight, active, and wish to keep your weight, aim for 1.4–1.6 g/kg (0.64–0.73 g/lb). People who are trying to keep the same weight but improve their body composition (more muscle, less fat) may benefit from the higher end of the range. 

• If you’re of healthy weight, active, and wish to build muscle, aim for 1.4–2.4 g/kg (0.64–1.09 g/lb). If you’re an experienced lifter and bulking, intakes of up to 3.3 g/kg (1.50 g/lb) may help you minimize fat gain. 

• If you’re of healthy weight, active, and wish to lose fat, aim for 1.8–2.7 g/kg (0.82–1.23 g/lb), skewing toward the higher end of this range as you become leaner or if you increase your caloric deficit (by eating less or exercising more). 

• If you’re overweight or obese, aim for 1.2–1.5 g/kg (0.54–0.68 g/lb). This range, like all the others in this list, is based on your total body weight (most studies on people who are overweight or obese report their findings based on total body weight, but you’ll find some calcu-lators that determine your optimal protein intake based on your lean mass or your ideal body weight).

• If you’re vegan or obtain most of your protein from plants, then your pro-tein requirements may be higher because plant-based proteins are usually inferior to animal-based proteins with regard to both bioavailability and amino acid profile.

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