T Nation

Pescatarian Diet

I’m curious of everyone’s thoughts on pescatarian dieting (fish is the only type of animal meat eaten) for cutting purposes.

I’ve been in the process of losing weight for about 3 months and have dropped from 210 at 6’0 to 187 in this span and am now about 9%BF with decent abs when flexing.

What do y’all think about going pesco for a few weeks in hopes of reaching 7%BF in the next 2 months?

Are you carrying enough muscle for that 7% to be a good direction to go in? You will likely lose muscle in that pursuit fish diet or not.

Something about that smells … off.

There were societies that lived that way.

Is there a reason for it?

[quote]Professor X wrote:
Are you carrying enough muscle for that 7% to be a good direction to go in? You will likely lose muscle in that pursuit fish diet or not.[/quote]

yes, strength has actually improved in major lifts over my span of dieting. Lean mass hasn’t been compromised too much so far imho. creatine supplementation would be included as well

[quote]DoubleDuce wrote:
Something about that smells … off.

There were societies that lived that way.

Is there a reason for it?[/quote]

I’m currently living in a region where I have a lot of fresh fish at my disposal and other meats aren’t such good quality

[quote]mattyg24 wrote:

[quote]DoubleDuce wrote:
Something about that smells … off.

There were societies that lived that way.

Is there a reason for it?[/quote]

I’m currently living in a region where I have a lot of fresh fish at my disposal and other meats aren’t such good quality[/quote]

Ah. I’d go for it. You can still hit the same macros. I remember reading some jay cutler contest dieting some years back and he seems to rely heavily on fish.

I like beef too much myself.

[quote]mattyg24 wrote:

[quote]DoubleDuce wrote:
Something about that smells … off.

There were societies that lived that way.

Is there a reason for it?[/quote]

I’m currently living in a region where I have a lot of fresh fish at my disposal and other meats aren’t such good quality[/quote]

Opportunity alone says this is a good idea (so long as you enjoy fish). Sea-food is awesome and versatile and the fresher the better. Dunno about cutting, but just keep the macros in check, no?

[quote]setto222 wrote:

[quote]mattyg24 wrote:

[quote]DoubleDuce wrote:
Something about that smells … off.

There were societies that lived that way.

Is there a reason for it?[/quote]

I’m currently living in a region where I have a lot of fresh fish at my disposal and other meats aren’t such good quality[/quote]

Opportunity alone says this is a good idea (so long as you enjoy fish). Sea-food is awesome and versatile and the fresher the better. Dunno about cutting, but just keep the macros in check, no?[/quote]

I have no problem hitting my macros, and whey protein is a huge help as well. I’m more concerned with mercury levels and shit like that. I’ve heard people getting sick from too much fish. Considering I’m intaking 200-215 grams of protein daily, I’m kinda hesitant about it.

In one of JM’s “Day in the Life” videos (#2, I think…he’s at the grocery store), he talks about his in-season diet and it sounds like he eats a ton of fish. He doesn’t say that that’s all he eats, although I believe he says he saves red meat for the off-season. As another poster said, if you’re hitting your macros, why not? Besides, cod and halibut are pretty light, calorically, so you can eat a lot of it. Makes the dieting a bit easier.

Dude, you’re fine.
Living off of fresh caught wild fish as your only protein source is literally how millions and millions of people have survived throughout history.
Probably billions of people.
You have access to tons of fresh fish and your other options for meats “aren’t such good quality”???
Seems like a no brainer.

[quote]Professor X wrote:
Are you carrying enough muscle for that 7% to be a good direction to go in? You will likely lose muscle in that pursuit fish diet or not.[/quote]

This was said in another thread currently going on in this forum.

Christian Thibaudeau wrote:

I`m asking because if you didn’t lose much strength, you likely didn’t use muscle. When dieting down there will be a naturel drop in strength, even if you do not lose muscle. This is due in part to lowered energy levels but also to mechanical disadvantages.

I would expect a 5% loss in strength (on the big lifts), roughly, when dropping 15-20lbs of fat even if you do not lose any muscle. If you lost 5% or less on your big lifts (e.g. big lifts going down by 10-20lbs) then I would say that you didn`t lose any muscle. If you lost between 20 and 30lbs on the big lifts you probaly lost a small amount of muscles.

Still, I would say that it is quite possible that you didn`t lose much muscle at all but that you simply didn’t have as much muscle as you though you had. A lot of people go on a bulking diet and grossly overestimate the amount of muscle they gain and then are surprised when they end up pretty much where they started whem they diet down.

There is what I call a bodyfat dead zone: between 12 and 18% body fat you pretty much look the same; not lean enough to look defined but not fat enough to look out of shape. So during a ‘‘bulking’’ period you could very well gain 15lbs thinking that you gained about 10-15lbs of muscle while in reality you might have gained 10lbs of fat and 5lbs of muscle.

OP, I would use this post to gauge how much lean mass you are retaining. If you see a large drop in strength on the big lifts, I’d reassess the situation and adjust your macros accordingly. There isn’t any evidence to support what X said. As long as you diet in a controlled fashion (slowly), as encouraged by our very own Stu, you shouldn’t see too much, if any, muscle loss. Most people just greatly overestimate how much muscle they were carrying to begin with, as said by CT in that post.

[quote]mattyg24 wrote:
I’m curious of everyone’s thoughts on pescatarian dieting (fish is the only type of animal meat eaten) for cutting purposes.

I’ve been in the process of losing weight for about 3 months and have dropped from 210 at 6’0 to 187 in this span and am now about 9%BF with decent abs when flexing.

What do y’all think about going pesco for a few weeks in hopes of reaching 7%BF in the next 2 months?

[/quote]

Its ok, but you may want to check the mercury levels of different fishes to avoid possible poisoning .

As a rule of thumb, the higher up the fish is in the food chain and the longer he lives, the more likely he’ll have a higher mercury content. So I’d avoid taking in too much shark, marlin, swordfish and bluefin tuna and stick to the little guys like halibut, cod, sole, haddock, mackeral, sardines etc. The latter two are, by the way, fantastic sources of O-3 fatty acids.

[quote]kgildner wrote:
As a rule of thumb, the higher up the fish is in the food chain and the longer he lives, the more likely he’ll have a higher mercury content. So I’d avoid taking in too much shark, marlin, swordfish and bluefin tuna and stick to the little guys like halibut, cod, sole, haddock, mackeral, sardines etc. The latter two are, by the way, fantastic sources of O-3 fatty acids.[/quote]

Thanks man. Where does salmon rank in there?

Salmon is comparably low in mercury. Just be sure to get wild salmon whenever possible and not farmed salmon (let alone farmed fish in general). Farmed fish are sickly little things.

[quote]kgildner wrote:
Salmon is comparably low in mercury. Just be sure to get wild salmon whenever possible and not farmed salmon (let alone farmed fish in general). Farmed fish are sickly little things. [/quote]
Farmed salmon meat isn’t even pink.
They dye it pink so it looks like salmon.
Most farmed salmon is feed “chicken scratch” as a main staple of their diet.
“Chicken scratch” = chicken poop
Groce
No thank you

^ Exactly. Not to mention the diseases that these animals carry. Thanks but no thanks.

[quote]kgildner wrote:
^ Exactly. Not to mention the diseases that these animals carry. Thanks but no thanks.[/quote]

If poop is anabolic, why not go for it? haha just kidding. I’ll take heed to your wise words