give it a read and let me hear your thoughts!
"While there was some experimentation over the past 6 weeks, especially with caloric intake, the following is ultimately what I settled on. Should this stop providing results for you, tweak the overall caloric intake before messing with any other facet of your fat loss program. You’ll notice that I used both intermittent fasting as well as calorie cycling and nutrient timing. These strategies help to accelerate fat loss and maintain muscle by optimizing how your hormones function throughout the day. By keeping the feeding window to 8 hours (16 hour daily fast) and eating fewer but bigger meals, we still give the body the nutrients it needs to recover and maintain lean mass, while allowing more total time for the body to burn fat and get lean.
A little more detail…
Hormonally, fasting and exercise increases the release of catecholamines and glucagon, hormones that are catabolic, meaning used for breakdown (of stored carbs, fats, proteins, etc.) On the other hand, feeding generally stimulates insulin release, a hormone that is anabolic, meaning used for storage (of carbs, fats, proteins). Take-home message: fasting releases hormones that increase fat burning.
Insulin is primarily stimulated by carbohydrate consumption, and to a lesser degree fat consumption. Protein has little effect on insulin levels. What this means is that limiting carbohydrates will minimize the insulin response throughout the day, making it difficult for the body to store additional fat and giving fat burning hormones like glucagon a chance to do their job. Glucagon and insulin are constantly going back and forth over the day depending on the foods we eat. Because they can’t both be active at the same time, if you are constantly eating carbohydrate meals every 2 or 3 hours, it becomes hard for the other hormones to do their job to break down fat!
What this means is that the insulin-glucagon ratio will be optimized for fat-loss while still ensuring lean mass retention by
a) limiting carbohydrate intake
b) eating a diet high in protein and fat
c) extending the overall fasting period to 16 hours while still ensuring sufficient calories during an 8 hour feeding window
(The 8/16 intermittent fasting protocol popularized by Martin Berkhan of leangains.com is what I used for my fat-loss phase, meaning a 16 hour daily fast from roughly 8pm to 12pm followed by an 8 hour feeding window from 12pm to 8pm). "