Carbohydrate loading; how load a bodybuilder? Athletes on specialized web resources often discuss carbohydrate loading. Find out what scientists think about this approach to bodybuilding performance. Like intermittent fasting, carb loading has become popular in bodybuilding recently. John Keefer can be considered the founder of this nutritional method. The essence of carb loading looks very tempting to many people. After all, it involves gaining muscle mass, burning fat, and at the same time, you can eat sweets. It remains to be seen how much carbohydrate loading is more effective than standard sports nutrition programs.
Basic principles of carbohydrate loading
It is a relatively simple electrical layout. It would help if you ate something in the morning and could even skip breakfast. It should be followed by lunch, and a small amount of carbohydrates is needed after the end of class, until 5 pm.
The natural food will be all evening after the training. Throughout the day, you can eat foods that contain protein supplements. As you can see, everything is straightforward, and we will now deal with the effectiveness of carbohydrate loading in bodybuilding.
Kiefer cannot be called the creator of this way of eating in the complete sense of the word. Back in Arnie’s day, we discussed this idea. Carbohydrate loading is based on daily fluctuations in insulin sensitivity, taking into account changes in this indicator after strength training. According to several studies, it has been proven that in the morning, the insulin sensitivity of tissues is higher. For this reason, glucose is better absorbed at this time. We have to admit that from a mass gain perspective, things look good here. But in terms of weight gain, everything is not so beautiful, as glucose enters the fat cells in large quantities.
The carb loading method is based on a clear understanding of human lives. You cannot consume carbohydrates during the period when the maximum conversion of glucose to fat is possible. Still, the body should use all carbohydrates to restore the glycogen stored in the evening.
The most important thing here seems to be the nutrient intake after the exercise ends, after which the glycogen stores are depleted, and the insulin sensitivity of muscle tissue is relatively high. For this reason, it must mainly transport glucose to muscle tissue. It sounds good in theory; let’s see what happens in practice.
How effective is carbohydrate loading in bodybuilding?
Most of the authors of various nutritional programs are trying to convince people that the processes of burning fat and gaining muscle mass have very complicated mechanisms. They don’t want to teach us to eat right, but they want to make maximum money.
However, no one makes such claims about carb loading but talks about the possibility of losing excess weight and increasing muscle mass. Although, this method of nutrition can be excellent for many athletes.
Most athletes visit the gym in the evening, and getting all the carbs during this period can be pretty nice. But at the same time, there was very little scientific evidence for the effectiveness of carb loading. Perhaps it is right to focus only on two experiments, the results most often mentioned as arguments by fans of this nutritional method. In the first experiment, scientists compare the results of eating 70 percent of daily calories in the morning and the evening. Admittedly, this study was quite long and lasted six months. People who ate mainly in the evening had excellent weight loss results. Unfortunately, only ten people participated in the study, which is not enough for a large-scale experiment.
The second experiment lasted six months and was almost identical to the first. The results of the two studies were very similar. Opponents of carb loading can also argue for it based on scientific research.
Generally, if this table style suits you and is compatible with your biorhythms, you can try it. But at the same time, it should say that many people in this nutrition plan are attracted by the opportunity to lose weight without the difficult counting of calories and cardio.
You can also eat fast food. Of course, this is not a prerequisite but completely acceptable. But not everything is as simple as it seems at first glance. No one is going to dispute that insulin controls the process of fat accumulation in the body. However, when you start consuming food, you lose the ability to lose fat mass.
Our body is designed so that when we eat food, it begins to expend energy and replenish fat reserves. You will only waste fat if your diet is low in calories.
As a result, you eat little during the day. During this period, insulin concentration is low, which leads to fat burning. But it will almost wholly its reserve at the Supper. You can usually achieve the same or even better results by reducing your daily intake and eating evenly throughout the day. In addition, in this case, you will not suffer from hunger.
When deciding whether to use carbohydrate loading in bodybuilding, you must remember that you will not be able to fool your body simply by changing the timing of your meals.
Of course, this method of eating will not harm your health, and you can quickly evaluate its effectiveness. Every nutrition plan should individualize; perhaps carb loading will give you great results.