Today’s video is going to shoot down one of the biggest loads of nonsense that the media and some experts have led you to believe …
That eating 5-6 meals per day is ESSENTIAL for keeping your metabolic rate high, while helping you lose weight.
I’m also going to show you one “controversial” diet strategy that will make your life a whole lot easier when it comes to improving your health and losing bell fat.
Oh, this stuff is so fun to pick apart!
PS. Will you be joining us on our “500 man/woman mission”? Let me know below. (Details coming next week)
Hey, how’s it goin’? Yuri back with you. Hope you had a great weekend, and hope you’ve been enjoying the videos. Again, I’ve had a lot of fun putting these abs-specific videos together for you, celebrating the April of Abs, and the comments on the bog have been awesome.
I really appreciate all the feedback and all your questions and all the encouragement. It’s been great and it’s good to know that I’m giving you what you’re looking for. Hopefully as we go through the next week or so, I’m gonna give you some more great stuff.
Starting with today, we are going to look at a very commonly misunderstood area of fat loss. When I’m talking about fat loss, I’m referring to belly-fat loss as well, because it’s all the same, as we’ve mentioned. You have to lose overall fat before you can lose belly fat, as you now know.
Here’s the deal. You’re gonna see a couple graphs behind me on the board here. Don’t worry, I’m gonna explain them. Let me preface today’s video with, I wanna bust a common myth. You’ve probably heard this a thousand different times in a thousand different ways on media sources saying that in order to keep your metabolism elevated, you have to eat five to six meals a day. Therefore, the deduction, if we’re kinda going into logical reasoning for this, is that the more you eat, the higher your metabolism will be.
That’s kind of the reasoning with that kind of argument. It doesn’t make a lot of sense. I don’t know about you, but I personally do not eat five to six times a day. I don’t even know if I ever have in my whole life.
If that’s something you’ve struggled with, I want you to know that you don’t have to eat that way if you wanna stay lean, if you wanna burn belly fat, if you wanna just be healthy, because the other thing is, first of all, not only is it time-consuming to eat five to six meals a day, but it’s almost physically impossible for many of us, especially if we’re a lighter frame, to eat that amount of food.
Again, I’m an ectomorph. I have a slighter frame; I can’t eat that amount of food. I might have two to three meals a day. I have some friends who are much bigger, 200, 200-plus pounds. They need a lot more food throughout the day to fuel their body.
Again, does that mean that they have to be eating five or six times a day, or does it make a difference if they eat just two or three times a day? And what constitutes a meal? A lot of studies consider an apple a meal. If you have coffee and you add sugar or milk to your coffee, if you look at the calories in that coffee, that could be considered a meal. It’s very confusing and I want you to understand that you don’t have to believe all that nonsense because it’s not true.
I’m gonna show you the truth today about how your diet has very little impact on your metabolism. I mentioned this last week briefly in the FAQ video, where I mentioned that diet has very little impact on metabolism, and your metabolism is really what is most important if you want to burn calories, because your metabolism accounts for 70 percent; your resting metabolic rate accounts for 70 percent of the total calories you burn on a daily basis.
Ten percent is gonna come from the thermic effect of food, and bout 20 percent is gonna come from other things, like exercise and other activity and stuff like that. Food has a very small impact.
I wanna show you some of these graphs here. I looked at the research, and I’m obviously trying to make this as simple as possible for you to understand, so I’m not gonna quote specific studies here, but I’m gonna take the general themes from most of the research with respect to this.
The first one I wanna look at here and I want you to look at is this bottom graph. I’m gonna try to find my pen here. My good, ol’ markers, blue and red; hopefully you can see it okay.
This bottom graph, we’re just gonna focus here for a second. What we have here is, we have resting metabolic rate on the Y axis and lean mass, your lean body mass—this is your bone, muscle, everything other than fat—on the X axis. What this one study looked at was they looked at: Is there a different on resting metabolic rate if you’re on a low-calorie diet, diet and exercise, or if you’re on a high-calorie diet? I didn’t actually include that in there. There are three different groups: low-calorie, diet and exercise, or high-calorie.
What the research found was that there was absolutely no difference between the groups. The most statistically significant variable as to how high your metabolism—your resting metabolic rate—is your lean mass. It didn’t matter if you’re eating five hundred calories a day or five thousand or if you’re exercising while following a low-calorie diet. The only thing that would increase your resting metabolic rate is your lean mass, which means, in order to have a higher metabolic rate, which is essentially the number of calories your body burns at rest throughout the day, you need to have more muscle.
That’s why I keep telling you guys that strength training is so important and is the most important thing in the long-term for you to burn fat, because resting metabolic rate accounts for 70 percent of the calories you burn every single day.
You need to do things not by diet and all that ridiculous stuff, but through building lean mass, because we know that the more lean mass you have, the greater your metabolism. That’s simply because muscle is more metabolically active than fat. Makes sense.
That’s the first thing I hope that makes sense to you. The second thing I wanna bring up is the notion that if we do not eat enough food, if we, for instance, if we skip a meal or, God forbid, we might have to fast for a day, we’re gonna totally destroy our metabolism.
First of all, as I just showed you in this study, a very, very low-calorie diet has no impact on metabolic rate, and there’re a lot of other studies that show that if you fast—doing a fast, essentially just drinking water—for up to three days, up to 72 hours, has no impact on resting metabolic rate. I’m a huge believer and proponent and practitioner, if you wanna call it, of intermittent fasting.
Essentially what that is is throughout the week, you eat your typical meals, and then one day you decide, “Okay, you know what? Today I’m not gonna have any food.” Why that works so well is because—and we’ve been scared to believe that if we miss a meal or we miss a day of meals, we’re just gonna store fat and all hell’s gonna break loose; the world’s gonna come to an end, and we’re just gonna turn into these big, fat blobs.
We’ve been led to believe this because our ancestors were scavenging the wild and they’re hunting and gathering; sometimes they wouldn’t have any food. In those periods of starvation, the body would then obviously look to hold on to fat. That’s an argument that a lot of people use, and, obviously, there’s some degree of truth to that, especially with prolonged fasting. I’m talking about several weeks. But if we’re talking about fasting for a couple days at the most—you don’t have to fast for 72 hours; that’s a little bit too much I think.
If you took one day a week and said, “You know what? I’m not gonna have anything to eat for eighteen to twenty-four hours, and I’m just gonna drink water,” there’re a couple things that are gonna happen. I’m gonna talk about the physiological benefits in a second, but one of the most powerful things is that you’re gonna get a better association with food.
You’re gonna be able to disconnect from all this thinking about What am I gonna have for dinner? What am I gonna have for lunch? We’re always thinking about food. I mean, I do. Personally, I’m always thinking about when’s my next meal, how’s it gonna be, how am I gonna prepare it, time all this kind of stuff, and it’s really fatiguing and it tires your mind out.
When you’re able to do a fast for a day, it’s really liberating because you don’t have to think about that stuff ’cause you know you’re not gonna have anything to eat until whatever time you’ve decided. It’s very liberating but it’s also really cool because you can also tap into your body’s true need for food.
Are you really hungry or are you just conditioned to eat at specific times or during certain situations? From that perspective, from kind of a breaking-the-habit perspective and learning about yourself and your hunger patterns is very powerful.
So, with that said, let’s talk about fasting for a second. There’re two states in the body; there’s a fed state and a fasted stated. When you eat food you’re considered to be in the fed state for several hours, as your body is digesting the food. In the fasted state we have no food. The body is essentially just working on what it has, and it’s going through a bunch of processes.
There’s one study, this graph up here is kind of, I merged one study and a couple other important things into one. In this one study they looked at fasting for up to 36 hours. What they found here was that in the first 24 hours, there was a 70 percent decrease in blood insulin levels. That is amazingly powerful. I’m gonna tell you why in a second.
After the 24 hours, obviously, there was a diminish in returns, so the more you fast, the less there’s gonna be, less of a benefit for insulin, from that perspective, but in the first 24 hours, there’s a 70 percent decrease in insulin levels. Why is that important? As we looked at a couple videos ago, insulin is a storage hormone; it’s an anabolic hormone. It stores things and it stores sugar and fat cells; it stores fat and fat cells.
With fasting, if you can decrease insulin, which just happens to happen, then you have less things being stored as fat. Does that make sense? It’s very powerful and it’s one of the reasons why doing a short-term fast is very powerful for helping you burn fat, because you’re simply not storing stuff as fat anymore.
The other thing is, when we’re in a fasted state, our body is looking to move to a different fuel source, which is essentially using more fat as a fuel, as we talked about tin this kind of doing exercise before breakfast video that we looked at last week.
In this fasted state, your body is looking to conserve blood sugar, looking to conserve muscle glycogen, so it’s gonna turn to fat and break that down because there’s a lot of fat in the body and it’s kind of there as a reserve for fuel and the body’s gonna use that as its main fuel source during the fasted state. There’re a couple ways this happens. I’m gonna show you.
Here’s the thing. Independent of this study, what happens is, when insulin goes down, there’s another hormone that the pancreas produces and secretes called glucagon; you have heard of it, you may have not. What happens is, glucagon actually helps to maintain adequate blood sugar levels in the opposite fashion that insulin does. If insulin takes sugar out of the blood, glucagon will break down fat or blood sugar stores and increase sugar in the blood.
During a fasted state, when insulin levels are lower, which means that we’re not storing stuff anymore, glucagon is then increased because now the pancreas says, “Okay, you know what? We actually have to bring some sugar into the blood, so let’s secrete glucagon,” which will go to the fat cells, which will go to the muscle cells and say, “Hey, you know what? I need some sugar to come into the blood.”
In this state, in a fasted state, we have more glucagon, which is good because now we’re breaking down fat. Another thing that happens is the adrenal glands will kick out cortisol and epinephrine, and those two hormones will go to your fat cells, and they’ll activate hormone-sensitive lipase, which is a specific enzyme, in the fat cells to break down fat and to be metabolized for fuel.
You have a number of different breaking-down hormones, if you wanna call it, catabolic hormones, that are released during this state, and it’s all about regulating your body’s blood sugar level. Insulin is the main anabolic buildup hormone; it’s decreasing during a fasted state. The other hormones which break things down—epinephrine, cortisol, and glucagon—all increase to break down fat stores, break down to a lesser degree, carbohydrate stores to maintain blood sugar levels.
A really cool thing that happens—now, a lot of people have this concern, as well, that if they’re gonna be fasting, they’re gonna lose muscle mass because, “Oh my God, if I’m in a fasted state, my body’s gonna go into my protein stores and break down my muscle and use it as fuel,” and that will happen with extended periods of fasting.
We’re talking about several weeks where there’s severe deprivation of food and nutrients that will happen. In the short-term, we’re looking at, again, 18 to 24 hours, growth hormone actually increases, and this is really interesting because it’s the only anabolic hormone that increases during the fasted state. Insulin is also an anabolic hormone, which means that it stores stuff; it decreases, as we’ve seen here, in a fasted state. Growth hormone increases and the reason it increases is to preserve muscle. Isn’t that cool?
There was a study, I think it was done in mice, where they somehow just kind of got rid of growth hormones. They prevented it from being released, and what they found in that study was a 50 percent loss in muscle mass during, I think it was a 24- or 36-hour fast. That’s pretty significant, which tells us that growth hormone is secreted during a fasted state to help us maintain our lean muscle.
That’s very important because when it does that, we are able to maintain our lean muscle mass, and therefore we’re able to maintain our higher resting metabolic rate.
Even during the fasted state, we are not depressing our metabolic rate, we’re not storing fat; we’re essentially allowing our body to tap into more of the fat as a fuel source and save some more of our muscle glycogen.
If you think about all the religions in the world, all incorporate some degree of fasting in their practice. Aside from the fat-burning benefits, there’s a huge amount of health benefits. Insulin, we know that high insulin levels, over time, will lead to hyperinsulinemia, which leads to increased fat storage, which also increases the likelihood of developing insulin resistance, which is essentially type 2 diabetes, so we don’t want high levels of insulin.
By fasting for only 24 hours, now you’re dramatically reducing your insulin levels, which is a huge benefit. You’re also improving your growth-hormone levels, which is very important from a muscle-building standpoint.
Here’s what I want to kind of get across here: If you fast, if you don’t eat anything all day, you’ll be okay. That’s what I want you to understand. You will be fine. You will not break down muscle; you will not lose muscle. If anything, the only thing you’re gonna lose is a little bit of fat, because that fat will be broken down and used as a predominant fuel source during the fasted state.
How do you do this? What’s the best way to go about adding a fast into your week? This is something that I do without even really considering that I’m doing it a lot of times. It’s very natural too because some days—let’s say on the weekend, the tendency is that, just across, as human beings, as the social trend, is that Friday, Saturday, and sometimes Sunday, our food intake increases dramatically.
For whatever reason, we think of the weekend as just kind of letting go. I do this too, believe me. The weekends for me are a little bit not as healthy as they should be all the time. I’m not superhuman; I have my weaknesses, specifically crepes, chocolate crepes. We’ll keep that for another day, though.
So, during the weekend, we have this kind of increased fuel coming in from food, and then on Monday we’re all gung-ho, it’s a new week, a new beginning, and we’re gonna decrease our food intake. Sometimes, for me, after I’ve had a lot of food on the weekend, I actually don’t eat anything on Monday, until later in the day. Let’s say I have dinner at seven o’clock on a Sunday night, and I’m digesting until about nine, go to bed around nine-thirty, ten. Let’s say my fast will start at 10:00 p.m.
I wake up the next morning, doing my thing. By 10 a.m. I’m already at 12 hours. If I go to…I can’t even do my math here. Let’s say we just wanted to an 18-hour fast, which is really where the benefits start to kick in, at the 18-hour mark, 10 p.m. from the previous night all the way to, let’s say, 6 p.m. of Monday would be 20 hours if I’m not mistaken. I hope my math is right there; if it’s not, I apologize.
That’s a 20-hour fast and that’s a really simple way to do it because half of my fast has been taking place during my sleep, whereas if I woke up in the morning—as a different comparison, if I woke up in the morning and said, “At 7 a.m. I’m gonna start my fast,” now I have to go all the way through the day, which is the toughest part. I have to start my fast all the way through the day, get to the time where you just wanna eat and kinda kick back and you’re still fasting, and then the end of the fast would take place while you’re sleeping.
That’s a little bit trickier to do, so what I’d recommend is, have your meal at night—obviously, the earlier, the better; you don’t wanna go to bed on a full stomach—whatever time you finish digesting—and let’s just call it whatever time you go to bed—that would be the start of your fast, and then just add 18 to 24 hours after that time to break your fast the following day.
I guarantee this is something that will make a huge difference on so many levels of your health, your body’s ability to burn fat, and that psychological connection to food. It’s really, really cool not to have to think about food, understanding why you’re craving certain foods at certain times of the day. It’s a very, very powerful exercise to go through.
That’s what I’m gonna suggest for you today. Think about this. This is actually something that you can start doing, commit to doing it today, just as a test; see how it goes. You might go through a bit of a woozy period, a little bit of a headache, caffeine withdrawal maybe; it depends on your diet. I guarantee if this is something you can do on a weekly basis, it’ll make a huge difference in your body’s ability to burn fat and obviously see the definition that you wanna see with those nice, sexy abs and muscle tone and everything else, as well as tremendous health benefits.
So, I’m gonna give you some really, some more detailed information on this next week. I’m preparing a video right now that’s gonna talk specifically about a really cool protocol that I use and I’ve used in a couple of my programs that are very, very powerful and very simple to follow as well that I’ll share with you briefly next week, probably on Wednesday. Stay tuned for that. In the meantime, we’ve got a ton other videos coming for you.
Tomorrow I’m gonna be sending you a video on a four-exercise ab workout, which is really, really cool, very simple stuff. I’m shooting it from my basement, so it’s really to follow and it’s ten minutes. It’s awesome.
Until then, thanks for watching. Hopefully, this clears some stuff up for you. I look forward to seeing you in the next video.
One more thing that I need to mention is that I had an epiphany the other day, and I’ve committed to—and I posted this on Facebook the other day—I’ve committed to helping a minimum of five hundred people—hopefully that’s you included—transform their abs and body by July 1 of this year, 2012. I want you to be one of the five hundred people.
If you want in, just let me know in the blog section below. Just say: “Yes, count me in. I wanna transform my body by the summer.” I’ll tell you exactly what this entails as we get into over the next week or so. Again, I want you to know that this is part of the reason for the April of abs.
I’m committed to helping you achieve the body you want for summer and beyond. It’s not just bathing suit season and then let’s just go back to eating potato chips, right? It’s about lifelong change.
I woke up the other morning, and I said, “You know what? I’m gonna set a goal,” because sometimes there’s nothing more inspiring, more powerful than setting a really cool, ambitious goal and creating a movement, if you will. So, five hundred people. I want you to be one of them.
Let me know on the blog below if you’re in, and if you are, that’s great. I’ll keep you up to date as to what we’re doing and how it’s gonna all unfold.
Until then, watch for tomorrow’s video, and have a great day.