Insulin and bodybuilding are intimately connected - because if you want to build muscle and lose weight fast, you should know how to alter your diet to alter your body's insulin levels.
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This is not really complicated, and can be done by anybody with a few simple dietary changes. What changes? Well...
When there is sugar in your blood, your insulin levels go up. When there isn't, insulin levels go down.
Insulin stores the sugar in your muscles but, if they are full, it will then store the extra sugar as fat. And when there's elevated insulin in your bloodstream, you can only use carbohydrates, and to a lesser extent protein, to power your body.
This makes sense – your body has excess carbs, so you burn it while you have it. But when you're burning carbs, and to a lesser extent protein, you aren't burning fat.
If you eat frequently (with a snack every 2 - 3 hours or so between meals) you never get a sugar crash. Or the accompanying use of fat for fuel after the crash.
Which can really sabotage your efforts to lose weight. So, to get your insulin and bodybuilding working together, you need a diet change solution.
Solution = Eat a low carbohydrate diet and exercise!
A high fat, moderate protein, and low carb diet will keep your insulin levels low. This, coupled eating less (i.e. creating a calorie deficit), will help you burn fat faster.
Exercise will help you lose weight too. And not just from burning fat!
Exercise actually makes your body more sensitive to insulin. So you release less to control the carbohydrates that you eat. Insulin resistance and exercise are inversely related.
A low insulin level helps you metabolize fat for fuel more of the time. So insulin and exercise work together to help you lose weight.
This is why some people recommend running in the morning, before breakfast, when your insulin level is low. It's a great way to burn fat!
So, that's how to control insulin for weight loss.
Insulin has an anabolic (constructive) effect on living organisms. That's why it helps you put on fat - but it can also help you to put on muscle.
Insulin and bodybuilding work together, literally. It helps you build your body.
If you want to add muscle, you need to eat the protein to give your body the fuel to put on that muscle. But you can give your muscle growth a bit of extra oomph by eating carbs too, which will help accelerate your muscle growth.
Just be warned, you still need to workout hard to trigger your body to build more muscle. If you do a stupid, easy workout and then eat carbs and protein you won't be doing any good.
Low insulin helps with fat loss. You achieve low insulin by eating a low carbohydrate diet.
High insulin helps with muscle and fat gain. You achieve this primarily by eating more carbohydrates, which - along with protein - are what should be in your post workout meal or drink.
It's almost impossible to put on muscle without adding a little fat, though you can concentrate the gains on muscle by not eating everything in the fridge after you workout. If you eat too much, no matter what it is, it won't become muscle - it'll just become fat.
Oh, and be sure to sign up for the e-zine Starting Strong to get monthly strength training, exercise, and diet tips e-mailed to you - and access to the free e-book Train Smart, Eat Smart: Exercise Nutrition Hacks!
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