Description: Are you looking for a way to make your body toned, lean and strong? This article explains how a person can build muscle on a low carb diet.
A lot of newbies think that they need to consume a lot of carbs so they can build muscle during the cutting phase. But the truth is, you can build muscle with a low carb diet. Also known as a ketogenic diet, this type of diet allows your body to burn fat and it’s just as effective as a low-fat diet. Be careful however as not all low carb diets are effective in helping you build muscles.
Ingredients to Muscle Building
Many bodybuilders and fitness experts know that the keys to massive gains are protein and fat. This is why guys drink a lot of protein shakes and supplements. Carb, on the other hand, only get converted into glycogen and then stored in the muscle tissue.
However, you must be wary of consuming too little carb because it will also get in the way of muscle building. You see, when you follow a low carb diet, you also risk losing muscle mass.
Low Carb Diet Risks
If you don’t consume enough dietary carbohydrates, the glycogen stored in your liver and muscle tissue becomes compromised. Your muscles will be unable to exert effort when you try to lift weights, thus resulting in weakness. When you can’t lift weights, you will obviously lose muscle tone, over time.
Secondly, when you’re on a ketogenic diet, you will be in a hypocaloric state since your body is burning more calories than you consume. As a result, your body will try to look for alternative sources of energy which it gets from two places: glycogen and muscle. When your body doesn’t have enough carbs, it will use up muscle.
Effectively Building Muscle on a Low Carb Diet
A very low carb diet recommends about 100g of complex carbs daily for guys weighing about 200 lbs. But, you shouldn’t go this low. If you are a body builder, it’s highly recommended that you consume anywhere between 150 and 200g, or about .75-1g of carbs per pound of body weight.
It’s important to consume only complex carbs such as whole grain cereal, oatmeal, whole grain rice, sweet potatoes, peas, beans and lentils. Complex carbs have low glycemic index which means they are broken down slowly in the body to keep your insulin levels low and blood sugar stable.
Another key element to this diet is to always consume carbs with either fat or protein, never alone. You can get your protein through protein shakes. Eating carbohydrate with either components will ensure it will be broken down in the body even slower.
Experts recommend that you eat your meals (with 50g carbs) about 1.5 hours before workout and then 70g more after your workout. The pre-workout meal will fuel your body so you can workout efficiently, and the after workout meal with replenish the glycogen you used up during your workouts. On your rest days, you can cut back your carb intake to about 100g.
Indeed, you can burn fat and build muscle with a low carb diet so that you’ll look more toned and ripped in a short period of time. However, you need to follow the right program and make sure your body still has enough carbs that it can use as energy.