T Nation

Charles Poliquin Diet/David Boston

Anyone have specifics on Charles Poliquins diet approach to get lean, as well as what he used to get David Boston into such incredible shape. From what I understand, he reccomends 1.5-2g protein per lb. bodyweight, with around 30% fat and 50g carbs from greens. This includes “smart fats” (efa’s) at each meal, and a high carb cheat day every 4-5 days. Post-workout nutrition based on leanness, glutamine w/ protein if fat, simple carbs if leaner. This is from maybe 2 years ago, any updates on his approach. Also, is it possible Boston is natural, think he’s up to 250lbs with single digit bodyfat.

I’d be interested in the answers to these questions as well! I’ve done searches before but proved fruitless.

14 grams of fish oil (his own blend) a day. That is A LOT of fish oil.

I don’t think Boston’s gains were completely natural. He put on 21 lbs. (from 215-236) in the off-season according to an interview I saw with him on Fox or some other show during last season. I can’t imagine that he was able to cleanly put on that much muscle mass, when he was already at that physique level.

this is the exact diet i am on right now, (which i got from poliquin) and it is very effective. the carb sources come only from greens, but the caloric intake is still somewhat high so i dont really notice any lethargy. also, the fish oils are mandatory. i take 2 every meal (16 total a day) along with either provolone cheese or cashews each meal for fats. for cutting, this diet is the best ive ever done b/c i have lost plenty of bf and i have gained a lot of muscle since ive been on it. be sure to carb up once every 5-7 days though. i go really high carbs (not a cheat day every time) every sunday. my buddy is on the same exact diet, has been for a year, and it has been nothing but anabolic for him as well.

JC#10, can you post the diet on the forum? It sounds pretty interesting, and I know that Poliquin avoids prescribing specific caloric intake, just gives the percentages. of protein, carbs and fats.

JC, could u give more details. What % are your macros from protein, carbs, and fat. How about grams of each. Am I right about the 1.5g protein per lb bodyweight? if your diet high fat or moderate?

Have you used Poliquin’s recommendations with a caloric surplus (bulking), or just a deficit (cutting)? I don’t see it being very off the wall in a cutting scheme because calories are so low. However, let’s assume that one needs 3,500 calories per day to bulk at 180 lbs. If he takes in 50g carbs per day from greens plus 80 post-training along with 360g protein, that leaves him needing 1,540 calories from fat, or 171g. This works out to 44%. Obviously, it doesn’t approach Atkins levels, but does that sound about right?

To JC#10: Wow! Those results are awesome! Is there any way you could outline your diet in detail?

David Boston came out of Ohio State in the 1999 draft at 6’1"-1/2, 205 lbs. He played his rookie season at 211 lbs. He did his off-season conditioning at Cris Carter’s F.A.S.T. program (they’re both Ohio State grads) in Boca Raton Florida until the off-season prior to the 2001 season. That off-season he decided to work with Charles Poliquin. An article I read said Coach Poliquin really worked on strengthening Boston’s “posterior chain”, and Boston played last year at about 240 lbs. The guide I have lists Boston at 211 lbs. for 2000 and 232 lbs. for 2001. So let’s say he wasn’t 240 but 232, that’s still 21 lbs. in one off-season. Amazing, and he is an incredible specimen if you look at him, no doubt one of the top four or five receivers in the game today, very fast for his size. Now, I just read another article where Boston was quoted as saying he’s going into this season 10 lbs. lighter so he won’t fatigue as quickly as he did last year, when he thought the extra weight hurt him a bit. There are quite a few web sites, “The Sporting News”, “CNN-SI”, and “ESPN” to name a few, that often have articles related to players and their off-season conditioning. For instance, the man who’s gonna throw Boston all his touchdowns this year, Jake the Snake Plummer, was tired of all the aches and pains he felt after games playing at 197 lbs., so he added 15 lbs. of muscle this past off-season and is gonna play at 212. BTW, he did it by eating good wholesome food and hitting the weights (uh-huh Jake, whatever :)).

Care to post some stats on how much you’ve cut/gained on the diet? Just curious.

ok fellas, lets see if i can answer all the questions. ok stopped doing massive eating may 1st, and i weighed 190 (5’8")at about 15% bf. right now i am 182(ish) at 8%. my buddy brian went from 225 at about 15% (he’s 6 foot, but im not totally sure of his measurements.) now he is a ripped 210, and much bigger than he was last summer. (we are both natural BTW.) here is an example day: MEAL 1–5 whites, 1 whole egg, large bowl of green beans, 2 fish oils, MLTVIT. MEAL 2–6-8 oz. of smoked turkey w/3 slices of provolone cheese, bowl of broccoli, 2 fish oils. MEAL 3–typical postworkout. MEAL 4–6-8oz ground buffalo (w/ or w/o provolone), large salade with oil and vinegar dressing, 2 fish oils. MEAL 5–6-8 oz of grilled salmon, bowl of green beans, 2 fish oils. MEAL 6–MRP protein only shake (ie isopure, optimum, etc), 2 fish oils, large handful of cashews. MEAL 7–6-8oz halibut, large salade w/dressing, 2 fish oils (cashews optional MEAL 8–1.5 cup of cottage cheese, bowl of mixed veggies.

so that is a typical day. i hope i was able to answer everyone’s questions. if not, please just ask again and i would be happy to help you out or give my two cents. i have to admit i was a little skeptical at first about the “greens only” as carbs, but it turned out to be totally positive. other supplements are necessary (like any other diet), and brian even cycled mag-10 while on the exact diet and had some damn good gains.

hey guys JC#10 again. i forgot to post a sample carb day, which i take every sunday. MEAL 1–3 whites, 1 whole egg, 3 pieces of whole wheat toast, scoop of all nat pb. MEAL 2–4oz buffalo, 1.5 cup of oatmeal MEAL 3–chicken sandwich w/4oz chicken, 1 whole wheat bagel or 3 slices of whole wheat bread, lowfat mayo, mustard, lettuce, tomato MEAL 4–4 oz grilled salmon, large yam MEAL 5–4 oz chicken breast, 1.5 cup of oatmeal or rice MEAL 6–MRP protein only shake (although i only go about 60% of a normal day), all natural PB sandwich MEAL 7–1 cup cottage cheese, salade w/dressing. *2 fish oils are taken at every meal.

Thanx for the info. Its funny b/c it looks almost exactly like my diet. I’m only doing 4 meals, but each meal is 12 oz. top round steak, chicken, lean meat. 2 fish oil capsules per meal. And green vegetables sometimes. Having 2 carb load days a week but besides that pretty similar.
Did charles really reccommend cashews and provolone cheese, if so I guess just as a fat source. And he also advocates 8 meals now, or did you just decide to follow this? Does he still say no carbs postworkout if fat and add them once you reach low bodyfat??
The diet actually looks fairly low in fat as well as carbs. Looks good though, thanx for the feedback.

Very enlightening post; congrats on your gains. A few more questions for you:

  1. Is your insulin sensitivity relatively low? <>
  2. Where do you tend to store your BF? I know that Poliquin has said that carb intolerant individuals tend to store fat more in their midsection. Alessi alluded to this in a previous Iron Dog.
  3. How do you integrate training days into this eating plan? I assume the carb-up day is always an off-day.
  4. What is the overall macro breakdown when you do out the math (for both the normal and carb days)? Also, do you ever vary the carb intake on low days (I believe Alessi has alternated between 50 and 100).
  5. Was it a bitch to get adjusted to for the first few weeks? We’re all so accustomed to relying on carbs that I’d imagine it would be…


    Thanks for the info; great thread.

I know Charles is pretty down on Liquid MRPs because of lack of fiber and unbalanced vitamin ratio. What about Milk protein + metamucil + cottage cheese?

I forgot to inquire about the “typical” post-training drink. Poliquin’s recommendations are for a lot more calories than Berardi’s, and he bases them on reps. Do you go Poliquin or Berardi-style?

Can anyone explain how such a diet can be so anabolic? I mean with this low carb approach, I dont see much of any insulin spike for glycogen synthesis other than on the carb up day. Also I would like to read that article if it is posted on a website or somewhere else. Holla back if anyone knows please. Peasssssssstttt in da EEaassssssstttt

as for my postworkout shake, i go for reps and calories (poliquin style). i’m usually at about 80gs of carbs, sometimes ill cut it down to 70 if im doing a very low rep, low intensity strength phase. as for my storing fat, yes, i store it in my mid section. (it sucks too when your quads are getting separated and your delts are showing but the damn little love handles just dont go away.) yes, sunday is my off day, so i just take a carb up then. (i actually look best on sunday night.) and YES, it was a BITCH to get used to the first 2 weeks. i started craving the weirdest shit like ding-dongs and doritos, but just kept chugging along. now it will seem weird when i up the carbs just a bit (i might experiment with a slight “bulking” phase where i eat complex carbs meals 1-3.) oh yeah as for the 8 meals a day thing, thats just basically every two-2.5 hours. (first meal at 9, last meal at 11 or 11:30, and when school starts, first meal at 6, last meal at 9:30).