T Nation

Eat Less, Get Bigger?

I found this on a web-site about the benefits of fasting, among many other’s, I found the following very interesting for bodybuilding:

“…Furthermore, “production of protein for replacement of damaged cells (protein synthesis) occurs more efficiently because fewer ‘mistakes’ are made by the DNA/RNA genetic controls which govern this process.” A higher efficiency in protein synthesis results in healthier cells, tissues and organs.”

Comments?

[quote]Pound4Pound wrote:
I found this on a web-site about the benefits of fasting, among many other’s, I found the following very interesting for bodybuilding:

“…Furthermore, “production of protein for replacement of damaged cells (protein synthesis) occurs more efficiently because fewer ‘mistakes’ are made by the DNA/RNA genetic controls which govern this process.” A higher efficiency in protein synthesis results in healthier cells, tissues and organs.”

Comments?[/quote]

Eh, I’ve seen this stuff before (it was a pretty popular concept with Ori and the Warrior Diet). My understanding, however, is that even if protein synthesis is immediately improved, the long-term effects of insufficient calories to prevent catabolism far outweighs it. Also, the quote you posted didn’t mention anything about increasing muscle size; it simply pertains to cell, tissue and organ health.

For anecdotal evidence, try asking how much the biggest guys in your gym eat and how much the smallest guys eat. Aside from a few genetic freaks, I’m betting you can guess what the responses are going to be…

I think fasting might be a good idea. It would get rid of toxins in your body. A clean body is a muscle building body :slight_smile:

As for not getting enough protein and your body going into a big catabolic state, people are going to have their opinions. I don’t know if there is a study that says if you don’t have protein, your body is going to eat up X amount of muscle mass and your strength is going to go down 20%.

Fasting probably is a bodybuilders worst nightmare and will probably get some bad reviews, but new ideas are always worth a try :slight_smile:

[quote]HouseOfAtlas wrote:

As for not getting enough protein and your body going into a big catabolic state, people are going to have their opinions. I don’t know if there is a study that says if you don’t have protein, your body is going to eat up X amount of muscle mass and your strength is going to go down 20%.

[/quote]

actually its basic fact based upon one of the most fundamental laws of the universe. that matter is neither created nor destroyed.

Each day there is a net loss of nitrogen, if you fast, where the hell do you think this nitrogen come from? I should say specifically urea and uric acid, which are byproducts of the deamination(loss of nitrogen from amino acids)
because you can theoretically use some other nitrogen heterocycles found in your body, but this is minute.

Anyway the moral of the story is that if textbooks say you need 50g of protein a day then you excrete 5g of nitrogen or so. 50g of protein has the potential to be approx 200g of muscle tissue(assuming 75% water), that is roughly .4lbs of muscle. quite a bit.

but thats the calculation for a person requiring 50g of protein, scale it up to someone who needs 200g or so and you could lose roughly 1.6lbs of muscle a day just by fasting.

not a good idea in my book.

[quote]HouseOfAtlas wrote:
I think fasting might be a good idea. It would get rid of toxins in your body. A clean body is a muscle building body :slight_smile:
[/quote]

fasting = ghandi
food = arnold

[quote]consumer wrote:
but thats the calculation for a person requiring 50g of protein, scale it up to someone who needs 200g or so and you could lose roughly 1.6lbs of muscle a day just by fasting.
not a good idea in my book.[/quote]

So, if someone doesn’t have a protein drink at night and they “fast” for 8 hours (1/3 of a day), they could lose a 1/2 pound of muscle??

Fasting for only one day, IMO, wouldn’t hurt any and might be good.

Like I said, a lot of it is theory. Yes, you need protein, but how much? There are so many people that say you need X amount and others say you need Y amount. Some say 2g per pound of bodyweight while other experts say 1g per pound of LEAN bodyweight is needed, even if you train with high intensity for an hour a day, 5+ days a week.

[quote]HouseOfAtlas wrote:
consumer wrote:
but thats the calculation for a person requiring 50g of protein, scale it up to someone who needs 200g or so and you could lose roughly 1.6lbs of muscle a day just by fasting.
not a good idea in my book.

So, if someone doesn’t have a protein drink at night and they “fast” for 8 hours (1/3 of a day), they could lose a 1/2 pound of muscle??

Fasting for only one day, IMO, wouldn’t hurt any and might be good.

Like I said, a lot of it is theory. Yes, you need protein, but how much? There are so many people that say you need X amount and others say you need Y amount. Some say 2g per pound of bodyweight while other experts say 1g per pound of LEAN bodyweight is needed, even if you train with high intensity for an hour a day, 5+ days a week.[/quote]

You’re body slows down its processes during sleep. It’s needs for all nutrients become less during that time.

And by the way… Will someone please define what a “toxin” is (medically). And why fasting would eliminate them from the system?

[quote]Pound4Pound wrote:
I found this on a web-site about the benefits of fasting, among many other’s, I found the following very interesting for bodybuilding:

“…Furthermore, “production of protein for replacement of damaged cells (protein synthesis) occurs more efficiently because fewer ‘mistakes’ are made by the DNA/RNA genetic controls which govern this process.” A higher efficiency in protein synthesis results in healthier cells, tissues and organs.”

Comments?[/quote]

What kind of mistakes? In non-dividing cells you you’re not going to get replication errors. So are they saying that energy starved cells repair spontaneous mutations better? That’s nonsense. Are they claiming that fasting influences mRNA transcripts somehow? Via what mechanism? Protein synthesis efficiency? What does that mean? Less improperly folded proteins? It all sounds very vague and biologically implausible.

[quote]Lonnie123 wrote:
And by the way… Will someone please define what a “toxin” is (medically). And why fasting would eliminate them from the system?[/quote]

I believe toxin would be something that the body isn’t suppose to have in its system. Artificial sweetners, synthetic drugs, McDonalds, conventionally grown foods, oral steroids, etc.

I have read somewhere that Galen, Paracelsus and Hippocrates “prescribed” fasting as a way of healing the body.

I’m not saying fasting is the answer. It’s just an idea that has been around for centuries for healing the body and might be good for the body.

With the average gym-goer building muscle at 1-2 pounds of lean muscle/month (if that), I don’t think a day or a few days would put them back any, if it did at all.

[quote]HouseOfAtlas wrote:
consumer wrote:
but thats the calculation for a person requiring 50g of protein, scale it up to someone who needs 200g or so and you could lose roughly 1.6lbs of muscle a day just by fasting.
not a good idea in my book.

So, if someone doesn’t have a protein drink at night and they “fast” for 8 hours (1/3 of a day), they could lose a 1/2 pound of muscle??

Fasting for only one day, IMO, wouldn’t hurt any and might be good.

Like I said, a lot of it is theory. Yes, you need protein, but how much? There are so many people that say you need X amount and others say you need Y amount. Some say 2g per pound of bodyweight while other experts say 1g per pound of LEAN bodyweight is needed, even if you train with high intensity for an hour a day, 5+ days a week.[/quote]

I don’t consider going all night without food really fasting the WHOLE night.

I consider fasting the point at which all nutrients in the GI tract have passed through. We say that we should eat every 3 hours to prevent going too long without a steady flow of AA. this is true, but the flow of Amino Acids and other nutrients does not immediately STOP right after 3 hours. It goes for quite a bit. I mean look at how long it takes for you to shit out your breakfast. I would say if you go over 6 hours without a meal, that is considered fasting. Starting from that point I would not be surprised if a person lost 1/2 lb of muscle from 24 hours of fasting from THAT point.

[quote]HouseOfAtlas wrote:
Lonnie123 wrote:
And by the way… Will someone please define what a “toxin” is (medically). And why fasting would eliminate them from the system?

I believe toxin would be something that the body isn’t suppose to have in its system. Artificial sweetners, synthetic drugs, McDonalds, conventionally grown foods, oral steroids, etc.

[/quote]

I’m gonna agree and add that a toxin is basically any compound that is in any way effecting any sort of function in the body, and this effect would be seen as detrimental.

In a very basic sense, if we can make the assumption that toxins can be created by the diet, and the body readily excetes toxins on its own. Then you will have a toxin influx as well as a toxin excretion each day, leaving some net amount of toxins in your body. If you fast, technically you can remove toxins without gaining new ones. That’s very basic though and doesnt really explain why fasting would be better.

I think the most important thing in removing toxins from the body is getting the lymph fluid flowing as best as possible. This would mean DEEP breaths and lots of compressional exercises, yoga does wonders.

Toxins are biological agents.

Poisons are usually their non-biological counterparts.

Most people’s notions about toxins and poisons and that are bodies are filled with them or can be easily be fixed through various means (vomiting, purging, enemas, sweating, diuresis…)are laregely unscientific and baseless.

Beyond that most people’s concepts of poisonous agents is flawed. Many agents that have no significant effect on the body are termed poisons/toxins by the alternative health community.

Metabolically, fasting creates more imbalances and generates more wastes than normal daily operation.

But hey, Galen and Hippocrates did it, it must mean that it works right?

Its possible to be into alternative health and still be scientific.

AlexH.

[quote]HouseOfAtlas wrote:
I believe toxin would be something that the body isn’t suppose to have in its system. Artificial sweetners, synthetic drugs, McDonalds, conventionally grown foods, oral steroids, etc. [/quote]

Who is to say what is “supposed” to be in the body and what isn’t?

Of course we didn’t evolve eating McDonalds and taking steroids. That doesn’t automatically translate into them being unhealthy in and of themselves.

Non-peer review science from 2500 years ago. I’m going to base my health decisions around that.

A lot of ideas have been around for centuries. That is only a measure of how infectious a bad idea is to a naive brain, not of how good the idea is.

One thing to note is that fasting, while certainly a preoccupation of people for centuries (millienium even), has always been something the rich and bored do. It is the affluent who have the time (and spare calories) to buy into whacko ideas that don’t enhance survival. Poor people have traditionally fasted not by choice. They also, generally, have much lower quality of life, more health problems and lower life expentancy. So if you went to various time points throughout history and offered poor people 3 meals for the day or the opportunity to continue starving to further their health, what do you think they’re going to do?

Beyond that, the entire idea is based on utterly wrong biology. Your body is very efficient at removing things that shouldn’t be in there while you’re eating. You don’t need to stop eating to get it to remove waste products. These basic functions are conserved throughout all animals and are not fasting dependent. In fact, if there were actually any biological advantage to fasting we’d see it in many other animals and we’d actually biologically be required to fast. That is, we’d expect that we would have the overwhelming desire to not eat periodically, no matter if we were in caloric defecit or surplus.

[quote]With the average gym-goer building muscle at 1-2 pounds of lean muscle/month (if that), I don’t think a day or a few days would put them back any, if it did at all.
[/quote]

Well if losing those some non-trivial fraction of that lean muscle every time you fast isn’t a set back to you, then no, it won’t set you back.

[quote]CC wrote:

Eh, I’ve seen this stuff before (it was a pretty popular concept with Ori and the Warrior Diet). [/quote]

Ori has the physique of a girl scout. Do the opposite of whatever Ori suggests.

I dont think fasting serves any purpose, if you say it gets rid of toxins from mcdonalds, why dont u just not eat the mcdonalds? Eat healthy and you wont have to worry. I personally wouldnt starve myself, I eat clean, and that in itself is good to get rid of toxins. Its like saying running your car without gas is a good idea once in awhile. I dont believe in it. Regardless, I really couldnt go without food, I love it too much.

[quote]rg73 wrote:
HouseOfAtlas wrote:
… In fact, if there were actually any biological advantage to fasting we’d see it in many other animals and we’d actually biologically be required to fast. That is, we’d expect that we would have the overwhelming desire to not eat periodically, no matter if we were in caloric defecit or surplus.
…[/quote]

Actually, there are numerous studies to show that calorie resriction can extend life-span in animals.

Personally, I’d rather eat if food is available, but I make my choice on comfort and desire… not necessarily on health.

[quote]mike08042 wrote:
I dont think fasting serves any purpose, if you say it gets rid of toxins from mcdonalds, why dont u just not eat the mcdonalds? Eat healthy and you wont have to worry. I personally wouldnt starve myself, I eat clean, and that in itself is good to get rid of toxins. Its like saying running your car without gas is a good idea once in awhile. I dont believe in it. Regardless, I really couldnt go without food, I love it too much. [/quote]

haha man well said, and AlexH is right on the money in my book.

[quote]consumer wrote:
HouseOfAtlas wrote:
As for not getting enough protein and your body going into a big catabolic state, people are going to have their opinions. I don’t know if there is a study that says if you don’t have protein, your body is going to eat up X amount of muscle mass and your strength is going to go down 20%.

actually its basic fact based upon one of the most fundamental laws of the universe. that matter is neither created nor destroyed.

Each day there is a net loss of nitrogen, if you fast, where the hell do you think this nitrogen come from? I should say specifically urea and uric acid, which are byproducts of the deamination(loss of nitrogen from amino acids)
because you can theoretically use some other nitrogen heterocycles found in your body, but this is minute.

Anyway the moral of the story is that if textbooks say you need 50g of protein a day then you excrete 5g of nitrogen or so. 50g of protein has the potential to be approx 200g of muscle tissue(assuming 75% water), that is roughly .4lbs of muscle. quite a bit.

but thats the calculation for a person requiring 50g of protein, scale it up to someone who needs 200g or so and you could lose roughly 1.6lbs of muscle a day just by fasting.

not a good idea in my book.[/quote]

I’m 6’4’’ and over 200 pounds and I fasted for a whole month and only lost 3 pounds of muscle.
Not a pound a day…

[quote]rg73 wrote:
HouseOfAtlas wrote:
I believe toxin would be something that the body isn’t suppose to have in its system. Artificial sweetners, synthetic drugs, McDonalds, conventionally grown foods, oral steroids, etc.

Who is to say what is “supposed” to be in the body and what isn’t?

Of course we didn’t evolve eating McDonalds and taking steroids. That doesn’t automatically translate into them being unhealthy in and of themselves.

I have read somewhere that Galen, Paracelsus and Hippocrates “prescribed” fasting as a way of healing the body.

Non-peer review science from 2500 years ago. I’m going to base my health decisions around that.

I’m not saying fasting is the answer. It’s just an idea that has been around for centuries for healing the body and might be good for the body.

A lot of ideas have been around for centuries. That is only a measure of how infectious a bad idea is to a naive brain, not of how good the idea is.

One thing to note is that fasting, while certainly a preoccupation of people for centuries (millienium even), has always been something the rich and bored do. It is the affluent who have the time (and spare calories) to buy into whacko ideas that don’t enhance survival. Poor people have traditionally fasted not by choice. They also, generally, have much lower quality of life, more health problems and lower life expentancy. So if you went to various time points throughout history and offered poor people 3 meals for the day or the opportunity to continue starving to further their health, what do you think they’re going to do?

Beyond that, the entire idea is based on utterly wrong biology. Your body is very efficient at removing things that shouldn’t be in there while you’re eating. You don’t need to stop eating to get it to remove waste products. These basic functions are conserved throughout all animals and are not fasting dependent. In fact, if there were actually any biological advantage to fasting we’d see it in many other animals and we’d actually biologically be required to fast. That is, we’d expect that we would have the overwhelming desire to not eat periodically, no matter if we were in caloric defecit or surplus.

With the average gym-goer building muscle at 1-2 pounds of lean muscle/month (if that), I don’t think a day or a few days would put them back any, if it did at all.

Well if losing those some non-trivial fraction of that lean muscle every time you fast isn’t a set back to you, then no, it won’t set you back.[/quote]

Actually,in the wild,when animals are sick they quit eating and fast.I’ve seen it when I worked with wild life.

[quote]mike08042 wrote:
I dont think fasting serves any purpose, if you say it gets rid of toxins from mcdonalds, why dont u just not eat the mcdonalds? Eat healthy and you wont have to worry. I personally wouldnt starve myself, I eat clean, and that in itself is good to get rid of toxins. Its like saying running your car without gas is a good idea once in awhile. I dont believe in it. Regardless, I really couldnt go without food, I love it too much. [/quote]

I disagree.
I believe fasting is very healthy.
There is a HUGE difference between a car and a human. A car doesn’t clean it’s self up if it runs out of gas.The human body does.

If you’re eating a small meal every 2-3 hours,like most active people do, then your body is expanding large amounts of energy digesting the food.Your body can’t digest food and do everything else at the same time.It doesn’t work that way.Your body does eliminate toxins on a regular basis,but once you fast your body does a better job of it due to the fact that you’re not digesting food all day long.

Personally,I know for a fact that fasting works because I was once sick and I fasted and it worked.Your body isn’t going to heal it’s self like it should if you’re digesting food all day long.
A lot of people on here would probably disagree because they might lose a pound or two of muscle(that they could easily gain back).When you’re sick or have cancer muscle is the LAST thing on your mind.Believe me.