The Zone

I know there is supposed to be some interseting tidbits about metabolism and nutrition in Barry Sears Zone-books. Im gonna get my hands on some books, but I just don´t know which one to get…there´s a book about busting bodyfat plateaus that seems quite interesting. Can somebody give me advice? ( maybe there´s some “Zoners” out there?)


i was half way through reading "enter the zone " when i read this article and it kinda put me off it


Just checked that article, and I see the point it is trying to make, but…

Most of the Zone reading I’ve done does NOT suggest that it is ideal for serious athletes. And if you just increase the calories but maintain the ratio, you are still “in the Zone” and getting plenty of calories. The TNation knows about tweaking something to make it work for you; there’s no need to be put off of the Zone diet because of that article. “Energy restricting”? Just eat more! Sears says you should NOT feel hungry on the diet, and if you do, you MUST eat something; he’s not dogmatic about his calorie equations. Nor is he dogmatic about the 40-30-30. He has said he regrets making people think those numbers are carved in stone. A range from that to 35-35-30 is good. One of the things that surprised and pleased me when I started reading TMag was seeing the caloric recommendations that mirrored the Zone.

Everyone I know with BF in the high range (including me) who has gone on the Zone saw great results by following it at least 80-90% of the time, and didn’t feel hungry.

That having been said: Now that my BF is down to about 8-9%, the Zone isn’t going to help me get it any lower. It’s designed to “normalize” your BF%, not reduce it to whatever point you think best cosmetically. Now I’m shifting partially to Berardi’s principles, without totally abandoning what I learned about healthful eating from Sears.

My suggestion: If you know someone whose BF is seriously high, by all means get them on the Zone. It isn’t more difficult doing the math on the Zone than it is arranging solely P+C and solely P+F meals! Once they get down to normal range, if they want to reduce further, tweak the diet some other way.

I read the article, and if a 141 lb guy who exercises two hours a day (!) is assigned to eat 1700 kcal, it`s no wonder they lose weight.

The article is an absolute hatchet job. Most of their criticism revolves around the fact that the calories are too low. The solution to that one is pretty simple: bump up the calories while maintaining the ratios.

Their athlete study had to do with ultra-endurance athletes. Unfortunately, ultra-endurance athletes couldn’t be more different from your average T-man or T-vixen. Their training is different, their needs are different, and their goals are different.

In the real world, I’ve seen plenty of evidence of the Zone diet working well to get people down into single-digit bodyfat–indeed, I’ve seen some drop below 6% on the Zone. Obviously, these are the ones who follow it most strictly, make sure their carbs come almost exclusively from fruits, veggies, beans, and oatmeal, and are ectomorphs or meso-ectos to begin with, but that doesn’t make it too different from any effective diet: people who make good carb choices and are naturally on the lean side will do best.

I have used “Zone-like” diets with success in the past. However, most people on the forums here won’t recommend it to you, as it’s geared more for an average person.

Now, if you did the Zone with a lowered carb intake, and split your meals into Protein + Carb or Protein + Fat, you’d have something similar to the T-Dawg diets. Here’s the link for the T-Dawg 2.0 diet Strength Training, Bodybuilding & Online Supplement Store - T NATION

Another option would be a keto diet.

try arranging the macros to your protein intake

"And without careful attention, lower-carb diets become lower-calorie diets. Poor energy intake is a bodybuilder’s worst enemy. If one is going to become a disciple and follow recommendations on the Doctor Sears Web site, I’d be particularly cognizant of the fact that they are largely meant to address obesity and fat loss issues. Total caloric intake can be quite low for Zone addicts, so consider both the gross amount of protein, carbs, and fat (grams) as well as their relative proportions (percent of each relative to the whole). As a bodybuilder, you are different than almost everyone else ? you’ll need more of everything. "

Lonnie Lowery

Recent research has shown an improvement in diabetics’ blood sugar control, with no increase in risk of kidney damage. (I read this earlier this year, but I cannot find the information now.)

Sears does promote the use of soy, but other then that I really don’t find too much of a problem with his dietary advice, at least for normal people. (I don’t think there is a normal person on this forum.) His advice is generally just eat a decent amount of protein, a lot of veggies, and healthy fats, and with more simplistic rules for the average person who does not even know what a kilocalorie is.

I wouldn’t have a problem suggesting it for anyone who wouldn’t want to go through the details of any T-mag diet. (Can you convince Grandma to do the T-dawg diet?)