I went back through my T-Mag files and found my highlighted printout of John Berardi’s “The Winning Formula” from issue 205. I ran the calculations again and thought I would post them for review. The results are surprising.

John used a 180 lb male with 13% body fat. (Why that male would be obsessed with losing fat, I don’t know, but that’s just me.) Instead let’s start with a 350 pound male at 40% body fat. That translates to 210 pounds LBM, or 95 kg LBM. (That’s the first surprise.)

Let’s calculate Maintenance Calorie Intake (MCI) from John’s formulas.

MCI = (RMR * Activity Factor) + TEF

where RMR = Resting Metabolic Rate = 22 * LBM in kg + 500 and TEF = Thermic Effect of Food = 10-15% * RMR.

I’ll assume a low activity factor of 1.5 which JB suggests for office work and a low 10% TEF.

So doing the calculations I get

RMR = 22 * 95 + 500 = 2590

MCI = (2590 * 1.5) + (10% * 2590) = a whopping 4144 kcal just for maintenance!

Of course, fat loss requires less intake, which John recommends to be 85% of maintenance. So a fat loss diet program for my theoretical subject would still get 3522 kcal per day. And all of this BEFORE adding in an exercise program.

John breaks down the diet into macronutrient rations, suggesting about 29% protein, 47% carbohydrate and 24% fat. This translates into:

Protein ------ 1021 kcal (255g)

Carbohydrate - 1655 kcal (413g)

Fat ---------- 845 kcal (94g)

Wow!

Am I doing this correctly? Does “The Winning Formula” even apply to the morbidly obese?