Hey everyone. I'm a really avid fan of the T-Nation website and all who post here. I'm top 5 nationally ranked discus thrower in the US, and am Type 1 Diabetic. I'm looking to find a meal plan to cut a few pounds of fat off, while providing me with enough energy to get through my workouts in the day. Something I can simply print off and follow to a "T". Any thoughts or links?? Any help would be Greatly appreciated... thanks
Why do you want to drop a few pounds of fat? Do you think that it will improve your discus throwing or do you just want to look better nekkid? The reason I ask is that one may affect the other.
What is your current meal plan? Post a log of average daily food intake for review. This will help with making productive recommendations. Also, how do you expect any one to know how much and what kind of foods when you don't even post your stats, ie. height, weight, bf%, etc.?
Do you eat on a meal plan at the cafeteria or do you have an apartment?
A couple things I would recommend right off the bat would be to drop the milk except for PWO. Maybe a cup in the morning. Eggs are good in the morning(mmmm) but 5 eggs has around 25g fat and that might not be the best thing for first thing in the morning. I would replace them with some kind of lean protein and do some oatmeal instead of the bread. I would add the carbs in dinner to the breakfast meal and leave them out of dinner. And you'll have to ditch the cookies!
It doesn't seem like you are eating that many calories. Are you leaving things out like soft drinks or snacks, etc.?
*Edit-I completely skimmed over the part about you being diabetic. Looks like TopSirloin gave you some good advice. Maybe look into the Anabolic diet thread.
You will find a tremendous amount of very practical info on this "T-world" of training and nutrition and tons of helpful people, from well educated experts to a plethora of personal experience from everyday fitness buffs.
I can somewhat side with you on the diabetic part. I'm quite familiar with the disease as I do research to better help my clients (I'm a holistic nutritionist). I'm not anywhere near an expert in the field but I do have a few thoughts for you.
First suggestion: I TOTALLY second the notion that you check out Dr. John Berardi's site and really study his teachings on nutrition. I have seen and researched many experts and his are exceptional from both a sports and long-term optimal health perspective.
Second, I would really start heavily researching your condition from a holistic/alternative approach (meaning that your long term health is more important than your sports performance). Traditional medical doctors are generally doing a great disservice to their diabetic patients with their lack of knowledge in advanced nutrition.
I know how much it means to you to compete at the level you are at because I was also once a national level thrower myself (decent at discus, but hammer was my event). My point is that what you eat from a sports performance side of things will differ and may even be detrimental to your long term health. And, just because you can keep your sugar at levels that allow you to live a "normal" life, there is much more to be learned about the disease than you may have been told.
So, I suggest you check out the following resources to help you learn how to naturally go about lessening your reliance on insulin (even though you will always be dependent). mercola.com, westonaprice.org, and yourmedicaldetective.com. If those web-sites don't make it through in my post, then do a web search for Dr. Joseph Mercola, The Weston A. Price Foundation, and Ronald Grisanti D.C., M.S. Also, check out Dr. Ron Rosedale.
I'm not going to get specific with your individual needs because you are a special case. But I can tell you one thing that you will find from an alternative medicine point of view is that you are eating way too many carbs and too many that are high GI. Grains and milk products, even if whole and/or eaten with protein/fat, still require insulin to be used by the body. Why? Because you only need roughly a teaspoon of glucose in the blood at any one time to function. If you eat several dozen teaspoons of carbs (a glass of milk and a cookie) of course your blood sugar is going to go up and you are going to need insulin! Therefore, your diet should be mostly protein and fat, eating very few if any grains and dairy products. FAR better alternative carbs are going to be legumes and vegetables.
And I have to be frank with you about something: you are likely encouraging cardiovascular damage by eating sweets like cookies. Even for a non-diabetic simple sugar reeks absolute havoc on the body. The higher your average blood sugar, the more damage to your cardiovascular system is taking place. You may feel healthy and be able to keep it at safe ranges by injecting, but down the road, when your athletic career is over and you are a family man, you can might find complications due to many years of elevated blood sugar.
The sad thing is that your doctor probably didn't tell you that even slightly elevated blood sugar levels (around 100-110 mg/DL when fasted) can greatly contribute to many other diseases. So, I would start by taking your health even more serious than you are by RARELY eating simple sugar. And if you do eat sweets, make absolute certain it is AFTER a large, low GI meal of proteins and fats. I know that sounds harsh, but that's the truth. But, don't let me convince you, check out those sites and do your own digging and you will find this to be the general consensus.
I really really appreciate all the responses. TopSirlion thanks for the info. I just started school, so things are a little busy now, but in free time I will be doing as much research as possible. I'm going to email and PM Dr. Beradi as I'd really like to hear his thoughts and see if he could set me up with a basic plan of attack.
To Topsirlion: With throwing for 2hrs/day and lifting for 1-2hrs/day for 4-5 days/week. Will eating less carbs harm my performance? I'm thinking I could take in less carbs, as I could then decrease insulin amounts ultimately making life a little easier. And cutting off the fat. And you think you could draw up a sample daily meal plan I could follow? Do you think Beradi would actually supply me with one?
I'm tryin to cut off the fat, b/c I feel that why should i have this gut when I could be stronger, and FASTER and be the same weight.
Berardi would be your best bet, but of course it will cost you if you want to get something specifically tailored to you and your lifestyle (which is almost a must because of your medical situation). But, I have coached and given nutritional guidance to some medium/upper level throwers. So, from a sports performance perspective I could definitely help you as I know exactly what kind of demands you must place on your body.
I won't lie to you - yes, cutting carbs might lessen how intense you train. But, it's about your long term health, right? That said, you could slowly make the transition this off season which would give you plenty of time to learn to adapt to a mostly protein and fat diet. As long as your liver is functioning properly, remember that your body can convert both proteins and fats into glucose. So, you really only need enough carbs to keep you from getting hypoglycemic (like I am). Your body can replenish spent muscle glycogen from dietary fat and protein but it's something that it would have to adapt to over time.
PM me with a more thorough breakdown of your calories (serving sizes), meal and training times, and I'll try to get some ideas put together in between clients this weekend.
Yeah, the avg nutritionist has no idea what truly healthy nutrition is. Most are stuck in the low-fat BS camp. Most have no idea of how the human body works - they just regurgitate the shit they were fed in college or in some bogus FDA/USDA-loyal training course. Dieticians are even worse sometimes, while they are well educated on physiology, they tend to be even more loyal to the crap the FDA/USDA spews out.
As I said in my post to you on the thread about this, I need you to give me a really good idea of what you eat, as far as food type and quantity. Otherwise, I have no idea where to put your calories at. Not to mention, again I have to be careful because you have a dangerous condition in which eating too little carbs, just as too much, can be a problem.
You will have to put in some effort for me to meet you half way. So, get back to me with a typical day's eating. Like how many eggs and toast for breakfast, how many sandwiches at lunch with what condiments and how much meat, do you eat 1, 2, or 3 burgers at dinner and how much milk do you consume with it??? Things like that. I know you want specific help from me, but first you have to be specific for me to help you. You might need 3500 cals or 5000 thousand - I have no idea right now.
In general, here's what I would do though:
No more bread!!! Oatmeal, low-GI fruits like apples, grapes, berries, and citrus, vegetables of all kinds, and some legumes (beans and lentils) should be your carbs 99% of the time.
No more cookies!!! Eating shit like this is simply long-term suicide... even for a non-diabetic.
Alcohol also screws with your blood sugar, insulin, and fat storage. So, I doesn't matter if you are trying to "live-up" your college years, drink very rarely and even then it needs to be after a meal, NEVER on an empty stomach.
Never eat carbs on an empty stomach!!
Eat protein and fat at every meal. This is for muscle building of course, but more importantly, this is going to slow down the digestion of the carbs you eat (that should be low-GI anyway). Just don't go over-board on the fat intake. If you read up on John Berardi's teachings, you will see that he emphasizes to never eat high carb and high fat foods in the same meal. This is usually because the carbs raise insulin levels (or require insulin in your case) then insulin tells that body to store excess cals (the fat) as bodyfat. Carbs are ALWAYS burned for energy first, so eating too much fat or protein with carbs will make you gain weight. This is probably why you are having trouble trimming up which is also probably why that nutritionist didn't do squat for you.
But, when I say include a fat with each meal, we are talking moderation here. For instance, the natural fat in a sirloin or round burger is good. Or, if you are having chicken, add some olive oil to your veggies and throw in a few nuts. Just try not to double up on the fats like adding olive oil and nuts to a meal that is beef or pork (too much total fat even though those are healthy fats).
Try to eat smaller meals, more often. This also has numerous benefits, but especially is helpful from a blood sugar standpoint. Since you will be eating fewer carbs and lower-GI carbs, you will need to eat more frequently to keep your levels safe. So, the 3 meals a day thing is not going to be sufficient any more. Try to eat a breakfast, mid AM snack, lunch, mid PM snack, and a dinner. Also, avoid sleeping in - this can throw off your sugar levels. 7-8 hours is plenty of sleep, even on the weekends. Time the meals such that you don't do any training within two hours of a meal or snack, and be sure you are eating immediately after training.
Since you train relatively early in the day (or mid day) then you should lower your total carbs of any kind at night. Carbs only have one purpose - to provide energy. If you are not active and about to go to bed within a few hours, why do you need carbs?? You don't! So, dinner should always be just protein, veggies and healthy fats, unless you have a late practice or lift.
Get back to me with any questions. But, unless you give me a detailed log of what exactly you are currently eating, this is the best anyone can do for you.