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Old 08-12-2007, 02:03 PM   #1
Steve Shafley
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Default Alan Aragon's IF article

http://alanaragon.com/an-objective-l...t-fasting.html

I found this pretty interesting, and it also looks at most major studies regarding this topic.

Worth a read.

Quote:
Summary



Meal Frequency



A haphazard/randomly variable meal frequency, not necessarily a lower frequency, negatively impacts thermogenesis, blood lipids, and insulin sensitivity.

Within a day, a higher frequency has no thermodynamic advantage over a lower frequency under controlled conditions.

The majority of controlled intervention trials show no improvement in body composition with a higher meal frequency.

Studies indicating the disappearance or lack of hunger in dieters occur in either complete starvation, or very low calorie VLCD regimes (800 kcal/day or less).

Hunger is a persistent problem with reduced meal frequency in non-starvation and other protocols with calories above VLCD levels.

For controlling appetite, the majority of research indicates the superiority of a higher meal frequency.

The body appears to be "metabolically primed" to receive calories and nutrients after an overnight fast. Breakfast is a particularly beneficial time to have dietary protein, since muscle protein synthethis rates are typically lowest at this time.

Overall, both experimental and observational research points to breakfast improving memory, test grades, school attendance, nutrient status, weight control, and muscle protein synthesis.



Intermittent Fasting



Animal research has shown a number of positive health effects of ADF and CR.

Human ADF research is scarce and less consistent than animal research, showing both benefits (insulin sensitivity is the most consistent outcome) and risks (impaired glucose tolerance in women).

So far, control groups are absent in all human ADF studies. Thus, no comparative conclusions can be drawn between ADF and linear caloric intake.

The validity of the single published controlled trial to date (Stote, et al) comparing 1 versus 3 meals is heavily confounded by an exceptionally high dropout rate in the 1-a-day group, and the use of BIA to measure body composition.

The 1-a-day group reported increasing hunger levels throughout the length of the trial, echoing the problem of hunger with a reduced meal frequency seen in other similar research.

Ramadan fasting (12-16 hours per day, sunrise to sunset) decreases daytime alertness, mood, wakefulness, competitive athletic performance, and increases the incidence of traffic accidents. It's difficult to determine the relative contributions of dehydration and a lack of food to these adverse phenomena.

The effects of exercise and meal frequency on body composition is an interesting but largely unexplored area of research.



Fasting & Exercise



Improvements in insulin sensitivity, glucose tolerance (except in women undergoing ADF), bodyweight/bodyfat, blood pressure, blood lipids, and heart rate are commonly cited benefits of IF & CR.

All of the above benefits can be achieved by exercise, minus the downsides of fasting.

IF and CR have both been found to have neuroprotective effects by increasing BDNF levels.

A growing body of research shows that exercise can also increase BDNF, and the degree of effect appears to be intensity-dependent.

Based on the limited available data, resistance training performance, especially if its not particularly voluminous, might not be enhanced by preworkout EAA+CHO.

Despite equivocal performance effects of pre- or midworkout EAA+CHO, it minimizes muscle damage that occurs from fasted resistance training.

Immediate preworkout protein and/or EAA+CHO increases protein synthesis more than fasted resistance training with those substrates ingested immediately postworkout.

Its possible that a partial fast (as short as 4 hours) before resistance training can negatively impact muscle protein status.
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Old 08-12-2007, 05:22 PM   #2
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Is he assuming IF is an ADF protocol with only maintenance calories on the eating days? Hence a Calorie Restriction program?

Other than that:
- Agree on the 3 vs 5+ meals a day (not a big fan of that anyways) where there is no real improvements for higher frequency
- Still echo's the body building's world of paranoia on muscle protein catobolism and breakdown with any kind of fast over 4 hours
- Hypes PWO BCAA muscle protein synthesis, which I can see a good case for the whole PWO window (nothing new there)..although will depend on the type of training you do
- Stresses Intensity is a key factor - sure I agree

Other than that really gives more questions than answers....as too many variables up in the air. Which I think is the strong suit of IF, you make it work for you by seeing what provides results and energy in your life. I don't need human trials to know it has yielded positive results for my health and body composition....then again I am not trying to be a bodybuilder physique.

As for the whole PWO window thing...I used to be 100% sold on it...now I begin to wonder. Why is increased protein synthesis most important in the first 2 hours after a workout? Say you take 2 days off....are you not building muscle then? Doesn't protein synthesis continue on? Isn't that why we need daily protein? I've found that if I want to put on muscle....I need to workout only 2x a week...sometimes 10 days between repeats a bodypart....so if my muscles grow over 10 days, how important really is that whole 30min pwo window? Or is that still going back to the whole bodybuilding philosophy of protein every 3 hours including waking up in the middle of the night or your muscle will break down into nothing? Just thinking out loud.....
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Old 08-13-2007, 02:27 PM   #3
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"Human ADF research is scarce and less consistent than animal research, showing both benefits (insulin sensitivity is the most consistent outcome) and risks (impaired glucose tolerance in women)."
Can someone explain the relation between "insulin sensitivity" and "glucose tolerance"? I guess I always thought they were interchangable.
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Old 08-13-2007, 02:34 PM   #4
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Interesting stuff for sure, he is a smart, smart guy to be sure. Is IF a great thing for being heeeeyuge? Not sure...perhaps one day per week? Two days per week? Not sure but I do think the BB'ing boogey man of sliding into catabolism is waaaay over stated. I maintain a leaner, heavier physique than i ever have with less effort. That is 170lbs sopping wet but it's actually EASY now...I don't know if I could get BIG on this. 185...190 would be pretty damn big for me. That would stick me back up near a 600lb squat...might be worth a shot!

I remember when Devany's new site came out and it was getting very popular and T-nation interviewed him. He was down on PWO shakes, massive amounts of food and supplements. Not great for their bottom line. So Berardi and some tool-box who has a "background in evolutionary biology" come out and explain away paleo diets and shoo everyone back to their oatmeal and GROW!

Meat&Veggies, nuts&seeds, some fruit little starch...no sugar. Brief intense exercise. That shite delivers...I'm pretty sure IF augments beneficial elements of sound nutrition and exercise...no studies to "prove" it but honestly it's tough to "prove" things sometimes.

Good stuff.
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Old 08-13-2007, 03:31 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robb Wolf View Post
no studies to "prove" it but honestly it's tough to "prove" things sometimes.
The Study of One is all that matters anyway. Prove it to yourself and ignore the naysayers if it works.
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Old 08-14-2007, 07:36 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gittit Shwartz View Post
"Human ADF research is scarce and less consistent than animal research, showing both benefits (insulin sensitivity is the most consistent outcome) and risks (impaired glucose tolerance in women)."
Can someone explain the relation between "insulin sensitivity" and "glucose tolerance"? I guess I always thought they were interchangable.
Yea...they are. I have not looked at those studies closely...I suspect there might be some design flaws. It takes a LOT of time to really deconstruct a study and do the process justice.

I've had an idea for a paper I've been rattling around...is insulin anabolic or is insulin sensitivity anabolic? i know BB'ers use whacks of insulin to help partition nutrients (in addition to a few other items) but this is all mediated at the GLUT-4 transporter level....you do not need insulin for this, you need insulin sensitivity. This is much of the post WO feeding strategy....

Gettit! When are you coming to Chico to visit?! Tell Ido to email me!
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Old 08-14-2007, 09:03 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Summary
Overall, both experimental and observational research points to breakfast improving memory, test grades, school attendance, nutrient status, weight control, and muscle protein synthesis.
I've been really sceptical of this lately. I've been IF'in during school this last term and had great results. I was way more focussed and felt like a sponge some days, sucking up books and notes. There were day's though that I felt too focussed and felt like I needed to be pryed out of what I was reading and studying. Days I had tests I felt much more focussed, relaxed, thurough and patient pretty much doing the test over 2-3 times. I fasted on a day on day off schedual and intend to do the same next term. This time around though, I'm going to track my tests and see if I score noticebly higher on the days I fast than the days I don't. Geek science work, gotta love it.
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Old 08-14-2007, 10:07 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Troy Archie View Post
I've been really sceptical of this lately. I've been IF'in during school this last term and had great results. I was way more focussed and felt like a sponge some days, sucking up books and notes. There were day's though that I felt too focussed and felt like I needed to be pryed out of what I was reading and studying. Days I had tests I felt much more focussed, relaxed, thurough and patient pretty much doing the test over 2-3 times. I fasted on a day on day off schedual and intend to do the same next term. This time around though, I'm going to track my tests and see if I score noticebly higher on the days I fast than the days I don't. Geek science work, gotta love it.

this is a really good point. Are we talking about an fasting adapted individual? Obviously this is far different than your standard insulin resistant individual who barely maintains consciousness between meals. This is similar to looking at fat adaptation in athletes after only one day. duration and timing of this stuff is pretty important.
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Old 08-14-2007, 11:34 AM   #9
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Troy,
I concur. My mind is sharper and more focused during a fast. Adaptation is probably key as Robb said. Looking back 2 years to when I started tinkering with shortened eating windows, no breakfast, and now 24-on/24-off, I would bet that I didn't feel sharper and more focused at first. I was probably much less pleasant to be around...yes, that's possible because everything is relative. As for weight gain, with a 6ish hour window, I put on about 10lbs of muscle from Dec-May without aiming for such....just lifting heavy, eating, and IFing.
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Old 08-14-2007, 02:34 PM   #10
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I must also concur. I feel my best and try to train in a fasted state. In a fed state all I want to do is lay down. It makes total sense in a way of partitioning activation of sympathetic/parasympathetic nervous systems. I feel like I just had a Red Bull all day when fasted. I rarely get somatic hunger, even 8-10 hours into a fast too. I am down 3% body fat at the same weight (163lbs) after I started dabbling in IF about 2 months ago. No other significant changes in training.

This is all unequivocal. I was measured pre/post by hydrostatic weighing and Bod Pod. I used to take naps during the day but no longer need or want to. Bottom line is I am better off since I adopted an approximate 6 hour feeding window on most (5 of 7) days.
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