T Nation

Details Worth Stressing Over or Not


Hi. I tend to stress a lot about the details of my diet and I want some advice on what is worth stressing over and what just doesn't matter. These are the few topics:

  1. Veggie carbs - now I KNOW it's been reiterated a million times that you do NOT count the fiber carbs in green veggies. BUT, what about the other ones? I realized a few days ago that I won't allow myself to have cottage cheese before bed since it would have about 10g. of carbs if I ate a cup, but I regularly will down an entire bag of lettuce while studying which MINUS fiber is 12g. of carbs, all sugar, since each oz. has 1g. of sugar. Does this matter? I would like to think of it as "free food" but realistically it is carbs. I mean, if I were to eat a low carb hot chocolate (5g of carbs) I would view it as a cheat before bed, but I'm realizing that EVERY DAY I've been eating this many sugar carbs in my lettuce. Is it the same - should I be concerned? My goals are lean gains so I need to be extra careful about having my diet spot on.

  2. Timing - can anyone from experience let me know what they have found the relative importance of timing is (ie eating less before bed) I really want to know the relative importance of:

keeping P+F and P+C seperate

What order would you rank them in?

Thank you!


You do not count the fiber carbs in veggies, the others, you do. Also, the sugars in veggies aren't the type to really spike insulin. They don't act like sucrose or fructose, so 10g of those in veggies isn't like 10g of table sugar.

Timing: you want the bulk of your carbs in breakfast and just before/after your workout. Before bed you want a slow digesting protein with some fat. Those will keep a nutrient flow more steady through the night than protein and carbs.


Thanks. I was just stepping back to check my diet and realized once again all the spurious carbs that slip in - I mean I started snacking on all these veggies at night and I added up all the non-fiber carbs and they total close to 40g!! My PWO Surge has only 15 g, of carbs! So I am wondering if that has to be cut back.


Have you been consistently on the AD since I first talked to you a while back?


No - I stopped doing the AD and tried a form of carb cycling although I thought I was going pretty low carb most days - the only carbs I eat besides green veggies are 1 scoop of Surge PWO (15g. carbs) and 1-2 servings of raspberries (12g.) BUT noticing that even LETTUCE which I totally thought was "free" has 10g of non-fiber carbs makes me realize that my carb total most days is much closer to 100-150g. of carbs....


The actual question I was getting at was have you been to your knowledge fully fat adapted all that time.


Oh no - you see since I've been having all those veggies plus 1 scoop Surge PWO I must not be...


Then if you want to get adapted you will have no choice, but to go very low carb and very high fat for at least a while.


And then you can go back to eating normal? I didn't think that was the case...

Basically I decided not to do the AD because I couldn't deal with worrying about veggie carbs, etc.

But now I'm wondering if I went to far and those actually matter. I wanted to do carb cycling/timing (ie keep carbs only to the meal PWO and the one right after that). However, I realized that the amount of veggies I eat in my other meals negate the amount of carbs I eat PWO.

I have put on a solid 8-9 lbs now and I am feeling the fat show up. I know it's not a lot, but the trend is there...fat going up. And I still want to put on another 15 lbs or so, so I want to figure out what I'm doing wrong before I put on too much more fat!


Is there any truth to the whole "negative calorie" thing they say about green veggies? That would imply it doesn't really matter, but I still felt so bad when I realized that MINUS the fiber my P+F meals have sometimes close to 20g. of carbs!!


No, but once you get fully adapted you most likely wouldn't have to worry about the carbs from veggies even if it was 40 grams a day plus your regular 30. I get more than 30 every day and have no problems with staying adapted or gaining excess fat for instance.


Hmm. How long is the fat adaption, just that 12 days?


The initial shift is a couple weeks, but staying very strict for a couple 3 months will allow you to completely acclimate to the new metabolism. After that I'd be astonished if some fiber bound incidental carbs gave you any trouble at all. Guys like Disc Hoss don't count any carbs from cruciferous veggies anyway.