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Why Snacking Makes You Weak, Not Just Fat
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August 17, 2011
2:56 am
Tuesday 110816 Snatc
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[...] Why Snacking makes you weak, not just fat – from Gnolls.org [...]

August 23, 2011
7:39 am
JP
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Hello J and big thanks for great articles & links

I'm coming from the angle of (endurance)sports and the need to plan nutrition before and after training (plus to avoid my kids getting carb-addiction), so I have some related questions, to which you might have understanding.

Q1) I try to avoid getting any carbs just before aerobic training(1-3 hrs). E.g. train before breakfast, avoid sports drinks before or during, min 2 hours in between meal and trainings etc.. I.e. I try to train with normal/low blood sugar level. But I always get carb&protein (~80/20%) after the training. Purpose is to train the body for better fat burning (-> Marathon endurance & general health).
---> Do you see any risks in this kind of method ?
(Male, 43 years, BMI 21, celiac desease--> glutein free diet)

Q2) ..about protein intake after training. In some earlier comments I saw, that whole protein (e.g. meat) will be available longer time in blood stream. Would that be sufficient also as a protein for post training needs. I.e. Steak during lunch and just carbs after training at 6 PM ?
Sometimes you just don't have optimum refil available.

Q3) sometimes I have a pause in my training, e.g. running 1 hr to see my son's match (45 mins) then running back home and then eat. Occationally I feel a bit week after that, but I could easily run 2-3 hours continiously with just water, withoiut such weakness feeling. Does the pause in training initiate some processes (muscle-protein-recompositions...?) which would require carb&protein ? ..or something ?

...There are not many places where one could expect any help for these questions...
-JP-

August 23, 2011
1:17 pm
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JP:

Q1) No, carb+pro just after training is good for recovery.  Your muscles will be insulin-sensitive and will suck the nutrients right up.

Q2) It depends on how much steak you ate, how depleted you are of glycogen, and a number of other factors that I can't possibly take into account. Hard-boiled eggs are a good portable source of complete protein, as is beef jerky.

Note that not eating afterward won't cause you to keel over and die: in fact, periodic fasting creates beneficial autophagy, and exercise will only hasten the process.

Q3) Yes, stopping exercise throws your body back into attempted-repair mode to some degree.  You don't require food at those times, or at any time -- see above note -- but it's beneficial for growth.

JS

August 24, 2011
12:16 am
JP
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Big thanks for quick and clear answers !
(...which triggered hunger for more..)

-What if one only get protein as a recovery meal and no carbs
(so if I just happen to carry beef jerky with me)?

- I had to search "autophagy", so it kind of clears your cells from garbage and "resets the errors" ?

..beef jerky, here I come !

JP, from Finland

September 6, 2011
11:34 pm
Quick Question about
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[...] I saw, people suggested working out on an empty stomach. BBC iPlayer - Frontiers: Muscle Wastage Why Snacking Makes You Weak, Not Just Fat - GNOLLS.ORG Reply With Quote   + Reply to Thread « Previous Thread | [...]

September 24, 2011
2:44 pm
» Isocaloric b
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[...] Notice that none of the options for incoming sugar is “build muscle.” That’s because you can’t build muscle on an all sugar diet. In fact, you’ll be guaranteed to break down your own muscle to provide the amino acids your body requires. Obviously, an all-sugar diet is extreme, but this muscle breakdown happens even with an all-sugar snack. [...]

September 26, 2011
6:12 pm
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JP:

That's fine: in fact, some people do that on purpose ("carbless post work out") to maintain the high degree of insulin sensitivity as long as they can.  So long as you refill your glycogen stores sometime before your next workout you'll be fine.

Yes, autophagy is the process by which your body cleans up old, damaged tissues (most notably, mitochondria).  Unsurprisingly, if your body needs to cannibalize itself for protein, it starts with the stuff that needs replacing anyway...this is why occasional short fasts (24-48 hours) and/or fasted training are good for you.  

JS

September 29, 2011
12:16 pm
Anna K
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Hi J,
great blog, thanks. I have a quick question about snacking. It's a bit confusing.

1. I like to have a big breakfast of fat and protein with a little carbs and for lunch a little fruit with a lot of sour cream. Would 1/2 apple with raw grass-fed sour cream for lunch, as an example, be considered snack or meal? Sour cream has only a little protein.

2. Also, you said "if your body needs to cannibalize itself for protein, it starts with the stuff that needs replacing anyway", so why do you always need to eat protein with carbs? Wouldn't you just cause autophagy by eating carbs without protein and that's a good thing (assuming the carbs cause only a small insulin spike)?

thanks!

September 29, 2011
1:26 pm
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I'm not J and won't directly answer your post, but I will say this: First, metabolic flexibility, which you can read all about ... and second, regarding insulin spikes check out this post: http://www.archevore.com/panu-weblog/2011/9/29/jim.....rches.html

Hot off the press …

I will answer your question indirectly from my experience of "eating like a predator" over the last three or four months.

Your meal plan sounds fine to me. So many "paleo people" get so hung up on whether they're doing right … just eat … just eat real food, according to your needs … you body will tell you once you start to listen to it.

I can't put anything more than a couple of tablespoons of full fat probiotic yoghurt down in the morning. My stomach wakes up around 11:30 and I long for a good lunch. You're very different to me. I used to wake up to a "shotgun breakfast" of cigs, orange juice and coffee, now a nice cup of tea … and a couple of spoons of yoghurt.

If your breakfast carries you through and all you need is a light lunch with some lighter food … do it … it's a meal. Sp what that it's fruit – if you're not metabolically broken, eat and enjoy! You went from satisfying yourself in the morning to midday … and again, 'til dinner time. Check out J's articles on what exactly is satiety and satiation – they're addictive articles and need reading a few times, but even a scientific layman like me can follow it and it really helps me understand as the family cook how to construct a really valuable meal – our evening meal. More than food, it's our "tribal time".

Woman are different to men. This is a fact. Woman seem to tolerate fruit very well, even like it. That's your lunch - enjoy it ... enjoy it however you do. Some berries, slices of fruit and some cream with is really good. I endorse it, others might not - it's all "meat, meat, fish and more meat" for many in the paleosphere, but ... again, so long as you're not metabolically broken ... carry on. Do ensure that you eat enough meat, fish, shellfish and eggs otherwise ... and I would say green veg for the folates and all manner of other goodness.

Don't get too hung up – eating real food when you're hungry is a meal. Eating a chocolate bar or a bag of crisps (chips) is a snack. Beef Jerky is a snack, but a good snack if you're hungry and have a meal planned for an hour or so ahead. You'll get it …

Living in the Ice Age
http://livingintheiceage.pjgh.co.uk

October 1, 2011
9:36 am
Anna K
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Paul, thanks for your reply. Snacking makes sense now. But I'm still confused on when autophagy kicks in. It's just more of a scientific curiosity. Does it only happen during intermittent fasting? I've read a bit about it and it looks like insulin spike inhibits autophagy, presence of amino acids also does.

So a low protein and low carb breakfast you are eating is similar to IF and will actually promote autophagy.

Interesting article on that:
http://knol.google.com/k/ron-mignery/protein-cycling-diet/2s3nmvrwklbxs/1#

October 5, 2011
9:16 am
Why aren't I lo
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[...] Article - Why Snacking makes us Weak & Fat Why Snacking Makes You Weak, Not Just Fat - GNOLLS.ORG Article - Rosedale Diet Book Review The Rosedale Diet by Ron Rosedale | Diet Review Please do [...]

October 5, 2011
2:01 pm
Count incomplete pro
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[...] has all the essentials in roughly the optimal ratio. The whole article is well worth a read: Why Snacking Makes You Weak, Not Just Fat - GNOLLS.ORG Reply With Quote   + Reply to Thread « Previous Thread | [...]

October 7, 2011
12:45 pm
Leptin Reset Experim
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[...] Article - Why Snacking makes us Weak & Fat Why Snacking Makes You Weak, Not Just Fat - GNOLLS.ORG Article - Rosedale Diet Book Review The Rosedale Diet by Ron Rosedale | Diet Review Article - [...]

October 7, 2011
8:02 pm
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Anna K:

When autophagy kicks in depends on how much protein you ate at your last meal, and how much activity you've undergone in the meantime.  My impression is that it's 1-2 days if you're sedentary, more quickly if you're exercising, given typical protein intakes.

To rewind to your first question, no, a relatively protein-less lunch should be fine as long as you got plenty of protein at breakfast, some of which should still be in your bloodstream.  And for your second question, you're correct: insulin inhibits autophagy.  If you want some calories to tide you over during a fast, pure fat is recommended, particularly MCTs (i.e. coconut oil).

Translation: don't worry about it.  A big paleo breakfast should give you enough protein that a small fat+carb snack around lunchtime won't cause a problem.  It's the people who eat a bagel with margarine for breakfast (or a "breakfast danish") who are doing themselves harm, for any number of reasons beyond this one.

Paul:

Good points, as always.  There's sometimes a thin line between promoting optimal nutrition and promoting orthorexia.  I believe in understanding and explaining what I see as the best way to do things, and letting people decide for themselves how far they want to take it.

JS

October 8, 2011
7:31 am
Leptin Reset SUCCESS
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[...] Article - Why Snacking makes us Weak & Fat Why Snacking Makes You Weak, Not Just Fat - GNOLLS.ORG Article - Rosedale Diet Book Review The Rosedale Diet by Ron Rosedale | Diet Review Article - [...]

October 9, 2011
6:40 pm
Anna K
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J, thanks for your very detailed answer, it makes sense now.

October 19, 2011
1:37 pm
The Value of Complet
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[...] to J. Stanton at http://www.gnolls.org for putting this forward in an understandable way in his article ‘Why snacking makes you weak, not just fat’) It really is very simple, the body needs protein, and if I don’t provide it with quality [...]

October 20, 2011
2:49 am
Stipetic
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Hey J,

Curious. When blood sugar and insulin are high (more proteolysis going on), where does all that protein leaving muscles go? Converted to enzymes? Membrane proteins? Shunted to the liver for gluconeogenesis? These don't seem like viable options. So, where do these amino acids go? Urea cycle? Or are they just recycled back into the muscle once the blood glucose re-normalises? Confused.

October 20, 2011
12:29 pm
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Stipetic:

I don't know for sure. Insulin increases both protein uptake and protein synthesis, so I would suspect the aminos go to wherever protein normally goes on a regular basis.

More info: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16545079

JS

October 21, 2011
12:37 am
Stipetic
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I followed the proteins down the road you paved--the one that leads to lean muscle loss (which I believe makes intuitive sense, btw)--but I came to a fork in the road and noticed the proteins had gotten away. Where did the go? I'm sure it'll come to me or someone else will figure it out. Thanks for the great read once again.

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