T Nation

Poliquin Bashes Massive Eating/Don't Diet???

Anyone been to Charles Poliquin’s website lately? In the latest Q and A someone (most likely a T-Mag reader) asked him his opinion on eating either protein/carb or protein and fat meals, and he basically said it was a joke and there is no research to back it up. I’m not sure he really understood the plan since to illustrate his rationale he made reference to protein and carbs being superior to carbs alone for glycogen replenishment post workout (duh). I never thought I’d say this, but maybe CP is “misinformed?”

Poliquin is a great trainer. Changed the way I work out. But his nutrition stuff has always been lacking. He basically just repeats what Serrano says. Talk about nonscientific! Besides, JB’s ideas are well supported by very new research. So CP was just a little behind the game this time.

I read that too and was pretty surprised. But I do agree, the way he did respond to it seems that he didn’t completely understand the question, making some odd references in his answer. Doesn’t seem like he took a great deal of time to listen to what the question really was. About his nutrition advise, I agree that he basically goes by whatever Dr. Serrano and DiPasquale say, as well as Beverly International who he seems to be a big fan of, rightfully so. As a side not just read a recent article Poliquin wrote on protein and he recommends 2.25g protein per lb of bodyweight to put on size for someone who is carb intolerant. Damnnn, thats a lot of protein.

There is no cooberation with the p+c and p+f meals. All well and good in theory, but there is NO research on it.

I’ve basically thought the same thing about him. I’ve read in two different interviews that he believes 50 percent of the bodybuilding population should be on no more than 50 g. carbs/day, w. 25 percent using 30/40/30 and 25 percent doing 50/35/15. I would think that the fifty percent would be more suitable for the 30/40/30 as so many people just can’t seem to function on the keto plans. Maybe it’s the lack of EFA’s that most people consume on these approaches. When I used to do the CKD’s such as Bodyopus and Lyle’s plan, I’d get extreme fatigue quite often…however using CP’s approach (variety of EFA sources, lots of green veggies, carbs every fifth day instead of every seventh), I seem to thrive up until the point where my bodyfat gets extremely low (like 5 percent or under). I find it very difficult to believe that this approach would work good for a mass phase though.

I sure have visited it. In fact, I’m the one who posted the question. I just thought I’d bounce the idea off of him. Like he often does, CP dismissed the idea halfhazardly. My results with Massive Eating haven’t been all that impressive, so I just wanted to see if he could throw out any sort of scientific evidence that it actually does have merit. Unfortunately, I think he might have interpreted my question as meaning that you shouldn’t eat certain foods (e.g. tuna and milk)together rather than macronutrients together. I wouldn’t say he’s misinformed, but I just think he’s skeptical because there is no scientific evidence to back any of these principle up. A university study or two are necessary before Massive Eating can really come to the forefront as other diets have.

do you know who else used massive eating type protocols? ron harris.
i remember an article he did in ironman where he said he dieted on 3000 cals. a day and that he never mixed the 3 macros. it was either p/c or p/f.i don’t know if he came up with this on his own or if jb gave him the idea,but the pictures of ron showed that he was very lean and he said his lifts didn’t really suffer much.

Chances are poliquin is not even familiar with the massive eating principles and he probably thought the reader was referring to another one of these bookstore of the month type diets that always promise miracles and creative food combining methods etc. If this is the case it’s no surprise he responded with a negative response as most trainers probably would do. The massive eating principles of eating have been around bodybuilding for a long time, I can remember reading about that food combining method over 10 years ago although at the time the advice was more related on binge control and went something like this…If you’re gonna pig out on carbs at least keep the fat low and if you’re gonna pig out on fat keep the carbs low at least that way your binge has only one source of fuel to burn and eat some protein regardless to feed your muscles.

Someone please direct me to empirical research that shows a “statistically significance” advantage of partitioned p+f and p+c over p+f+c other than post-workout.

Massive eating is like anything else in training - it has its place but isnt gospel. Kelly is right in saying alot of carb + fat meals lead to fat gains. So the principles are important and I continue to use them. The problem with a strict massive eating protocol is (a) from experience, half of meals being no carb limits growth (b) carbs have certain vitamins that are fat soluble, so strict P+C meals can compromise vitamin intake and nutrition. Im doing lots of P+C meals (often steak and potatoes) and am growing like a weed without significant fat gain. I am doing this whilst training past failure ALOT. Everyone is different though.

There is NO research justifying massive eating protocols. Food combining is bunk. Maybe JMB and Suzanne Sommers have some kind of back end deal going on. Sorry John, but your theory is seriously flawed. A more seasoned fitness author such as Lyle McDonald would tear you to shreds in a debate on this subject.

Love the guy or hate him, I’ve successfully used don lemmon’s approach of (protein/fat/non-starch veggies) at 3 meals and carb or nuts or fruit only snack at 2 intervals.
Very easy digestion and quick body comp changes.

Good luck
Mike

A little defense of JB, here…


John is a young, bright researcher AND trainer who is contiuously testing his theories in the lab, IN THE REAL WORLD (by monitoring World class atheletes) and by doing something very few “gurus” do…contiunously revising his recommendations when he has proven by research and real-world experience that there is “a better way”.(He proved it most recently by revising how we should consume “Surge”).


To put him in the same sentence as “Chrissy The Thighmaster Huckster” doesn’t even deserve comment. What about putting him with Poliquin and McDonald? No…I place him in a class by himself. And God help us if he ever becomes a “guru”. Not only will he begin to spew out bad information…but it will become “gospel” for a lot of people. Then we all begin to lose…

I second that, I wish Lyle would come over and drop his dime.

Bill, don’t ever again refer to John as a “fitness author”

What do you call him if he is not a fitness author? The studies he has conducted and the company that he has set is designed specifically for dealing with endurance atheletes. Although a “recovery specialist” is important to me as bodybuilder, I would hardly consider working out 1.5 hours, 4-5 week on par to competing in the Tour De France or even managing your recovery in season for an NCAA level sport.

I’ve been keeping up with this thread and here’s my take:

  1. There is very little experimental evidence to support many of the practices that modern bodybuilders/strength athletes use with success. Remember, the scientific literature says that a MAX of 1.4g of protein/kg is sufficient to build muscle (that’s only 140g for a 220lb guy). But bodybuilders know better. Therefore dont write off the massive eating plan simply because there isnt any published data. I know many people who have had success with it and the anecdotes on the forum have been overwhelmingly positive. Remember, for years there was no evidence demonstrating that testosterone/steroids build muscle; in fact the first few studies showed that they didnt.

2) My impression of the massive eating plan was that both the combos AND the food choices were very important. I thought JB's "post" massive eating articles clarified this point well. I had a conversation with JB about this at a seminar and he explained that the people who often fail on such a plan, do so because of poor food choices. In addition, John was careful to point out that this type of eating IS NOT the end all, be all. He explained that it's a strategy you can choose. And it works especially well (the calcs, food choices, and meal combos) when bulking up (eating above maintainance).

  1. Guys like poliquin, serrano, etc obviously have their own agenda. Therefore I doubt very seriously that these guys are spending time here reading JB’s or anyone else’s articles to objectively asses the validity. Therefore when asked about meal combining, they simply dismiss it along with suzanne sommers and the others. Perhaps if they understood the rationale their impression would be different. How can we dismiss a plan like massive eating (which was explained in two full articles and many subsequent q and a’s) based on a one paragraph response by poliquin or anyone else.

4)As far as calling these guys "fitness authors" I doubt anyone who writes for TESTOSTERONE would be flattered by such a soft and impotent title, especially guys with terminal degrees (masters, phd) like JB. Guys, my impression from meeting JB is that this dude is a researcher who spends his days collecting data in a legit research lab at a stellar canadian university. I also understand that he happens to consult with elite athletes in both strength/power and endurance athletes (both nutrition and training). In addition he listed his credentials, demonstrating an excellent athletic background. I think he was a national level sprinter, rugby player, and national chamption bodybuilder. That, to me, means he's a bit more than a "fitness writer".

Just a reminder for any older newbies or casual readers of this forum. If you were around in the eighties, the term “food combining” generally meant a method popularized by a book called “Fit for Life” (NOT “Body for Life”) co-written by Harvey Diamond and his wife. It was wildly popular at the time. In their sense, “food combining” meant not eating protein and (starchy) carbs at the same time, ever, because they argued that one is digested in an acidic medium, and the other in an alkaline medium. Berardi’s “food combining” obviously has nothing to do with that. (Does Berardi even use the term himself, or do others use it on his behalf? If he ever writes a book, he might consider another term.) Anyway, if you grew up “health conscious” in the eighties, and you now hear “food combining,” that’s the connection you’re going to make. I’d assume that CP is too aware of Berardi’s work to misapply the term. But it’s possible, I suppose. His response on “protein and carbs being superior to carbs alone” makes me wonder, because that was the very thing that the old Fit for Life food combining discouraged – protein plus carbs.

When I was a senior in HS, I did that whole food combining thing and went vegan (I read Fit for Life). I dropped a huge amount of weight very quickly, but my guess is that was because a) in the beginning, I didn’t really have anything to eat in the house b) I was basically eating no sweets anymore because they all had dairy.
Once I got proper vegan foods in quantity, the weight came back on. Yay, starvation. I looked terrible, btw.