Performance Diet Types and Terminology

General discussions about getting and staying fit that don't relate directly to your indoor rower
left coaster
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Re: Performance Diet Types and Terminology

Post by left coaster » June 12th, 2016, 9:36 pm

7 pages and growing, looks like there was an 'appetite' for this type of thread ;)

I'll come out and say it, as I've been trying to stay neutral, but I believe in low carb diets. This is a relativistic perspective though as I believe carbs are simply too abundant in our diets and agree with previous comments about the corporate influence of 'carb pushing' in our societies. As I've mentioned before, I think 'low carb' diets actually start at 'healthy carb' diets and restrict further from there.

On the topic of no carb diets, aka full KETO, I don't think anyone on this thread is actually using a full KETO diet. All vegetables contain some carbs and it seems everyone here eats their veggies or intentionally takes on carbs occasionally.

KETO diets interest me from a neurological perspective as there is evidence that they may result in glutimate (a primary excitatory neurotransmitter in the brain) depletion from the central nervous system and a relative increase in GABA an inhibitory neurotransmitter. This is a striking change to how the brains of keto adapted people function and likely accounts for why keto diets reduce epilepsy in children i.e. decreasing cortical excitation while increasing inhibition. This is not to say that cognitive function works the same way as excitatory neurotransmission is required for active inhibition and behavioral control.

KETO diets show promise for improving cognitive function in older adults with dementia (I never use Alzheimer's language as even at autopsy only about 60% of pathologists agree re ALZ diagnosis, it is a vastly misused term in media). It is my impression that these improvements occur because the insulin sensitivity and glucose metabolism of the brain for many with dementia has been damaged beyond repair by a lifetime of excessive carb consumption and sub-clinical, or clinical levels, of diabetes. What I think occurs is that the glucose pathways in the brain simply go 'off line' in older adults when they go keto, leaving the relatively intact ketone pathways to take over for energy metabolism. It is important to keep in mind that these individuals show some improvement relative to their very impaired cognitive state -- they do not recover to anywhere remotely close to their pre-dementia cognitive status. I interpret this as meaning that the structual damage is already done and/or a purely ketogenic diet is not adequate to support robust neuroplasticity and recovery of function in older adults.

Then there is very new evidence that healthy adult brains load glycogen derived from circulating blood glucose and that this glycogen loading is emerging as being associated with increased time to exhaustion at outputs around 80% of max and above. In this context, it would seem to me that a fully ketogenic diet will be a detriment to maximum performance in endurance states that extend beyond short sprints into the middle distance range. This is completely consistent with Henry's description of his personal experience doing 4x1000 distance work when keto adapted. The symptoms of this would be profound cognitive 'suffering and distress' and the feeling of simply not being able to carry on. This is different from burning muscles or a heart rate that is rocketing past 180. I am increasingly convinced that these feelings are symptoms of cortical glycogen depletion. Earlier research called this the 'central governor' (Stoakes wrote a lot about this). Within this model a keto adapted athlete should also be able to run at sub maximal intensity for the duration their fat stores will carry them. Exercising in the 60-75% output range in a keto state "probably" (not proven or researched yet) limits demands on cortical glycogen reserves and allows for the brain metabolic needs to be met using ketone bodies. It would also mean that a keto adapted athlete should be able to still sprint well, but that they will be impaired relative to someone with a supercompensated cortical store of glycogen if required to repeat this effort multiple times.

I believe that over the coming decade the critical role of healthy glucose metabolism, and subsequent astrocytic glycogen loading, in the brain to support athletic performance will emerge. With this will come advances in the timing of exhaustive interval and distance work combined with specifically timed carb loading that will have the goal of maximizing cortical glycogen loading. We still have no way to measure this in humans and only in the last couple years has it been discovered how to measure glycogen in the brains of rodents.

Based on my above ramblings, I think that keto diets are the wrong approach for maximal middle distance efforts i.e. anything beyond a kilometer and under 10. Having said that, I also don't think we need a lot of carbs across a day and that the timing of ingestion is key i.e. consume small amounts in the first hour after exhaustive efforts, as it seems most people here are already doing.
Last edited by left coaster on June 12th, 2016, 9:54 pm, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: Performance Diet Types and Terminology

Post by mdpfirrman » June 12th, 2016, 9:42 pm

Nice comments Shawn / Lefty. Ironically, I've seen Sam Loch post McDonalds on his Twitter account. He actually posted something recently on his Twitter on this very topic.

http://www.dropthehammer.com/?p=665

I think it's a funny read. He even pokes a bit of fun at Robb Wolf (who ironically wrote the article I linked basically stating Lefty's beliefs - and mine by the way).
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Tim K.
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Re: Performance Diet Types and Terminology

Post by Tim K. » June 12th, 2016, 10:56 pm

Lefty, Im trying to get my head around what your calling a "full KETO diet". I have never heard of such a thing and can not imagine any such diet being even remotely possible as basically everything has carbohydrate in it, including meat, yes very little but it does have glycogen.

From my understanding, a ketogenic diet is simply a diet that provides the required conditions to encourage the genesis of ketone bodies, 0 carbs not required.

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Re: Performance Diet Types and Terminology

Post by hjs » June 13th, 2016, 3:53 am

Tim K. wrote:
hjs wrote:Fine post from Tim. Clearly showing his personal experience. Good chance though he can,t see my posts anymore lol, when on his fo list :!:

The fact you may gain some weight short term is not very relevant (fat mass). This is never much in the big picture. If performance is not helpen, the whole point of carb loading is pointless. If performance is helpen, a bit of fat conversion is no point.

First off, there is a hell of a lot more there than my personal experience. Secondly, I can see your posts just fine. Its a poor life strategy to completely exclude any potential source of information, regardless of how painful it can be to glean.

The consequences of gaining lipid mass in the context of a LC diet is the entire point I am trying to get across!!!

IF YOU ARE A LOW CARB ATHLETE AND YOU EAT ENOUGH CARB TO CAUSE YOUR BODY TO STORE FAT, YOU HAVE, FOR A PERIOD OF TIME, LOST THE ABILITY TO ACCESS YOU FAT STORES FOR ENERGY AND ARE NOW AGAIN EXCLUSIVELY DEPENDENT ON CARBS FOR ENERGY.

The symptoms you experienced when LC, while unfortunate and unpleasant, dosnt mean LC dosnt work, it simply tells me you were doing it wrong.
Which is simply not true, the body easily burn fat again after storing fat.

I said nothing about lc not working, I do eat modest carb at most, never high, my goals are, aged almost 50 to gain strenght, which I WILL, THIS NEEDS DONE KIND OF WEIGHT GAIN, which I can,t on low fat. So its not a matter of not working, its a matter of looking at what i want to achieve.


You simply keep on thinking very limited, its black or white, its always some kind of gray, nobody eats carb only or fat only, its always a mix. And no there are no fixed %.
Last edited by hjs on June 13th, 2016, 4:14 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Performance Diet Types and Terminology

Post by hjs » June 13th, 2016, 4:09 am

Shawn Baker wrote:
For me personally, as an "old guy" athlete, I have no money or contracts riding on how I perform and so I am free to experiment and see what is possible. As Henry points out my focus currently is the short stuff, I am clearly low carb and do spend a fair bit of time in fasted state. My assumption is that this decreases overall inflammation. I also do things like taking cold showers and ice baths and really focus on good sleep, so those things might be confounders. My capacity to go very hard on a nearly daily basis is likely a result of the aforementioned strategy. I also now enjoy a much improved overall health, energy level, mental disposition and clarity. I certainly am open to experimentation and have employed other strategies to include carb cycling, targeting and cyclic ketogenic strategies. My personal performance with respect to rowing has only gotten better as I have consistently set new PRs despite getting "older" (granted I've only been rowing for almost 3 years). Although Henry points out that I am not doing long sessions (by design), I found just as a way of an anecdote that when I played Rugby a few weeks ago (first time in 20 years) I was able to go hard for 90 minutes with lots of sprinting against guys 30 years my junior with no problem, was not tired and ran entire time. Maybe I'll change down the road, but currently I am enjoying the best health of my life and arguably am performing very well from an athletic perspective.
Its pretty clear your current eating works, you are beyond the early days and also stopped with refeeding carbs and you results speak.

Re the rugby, game sports are alactic anaerobic/aerobic from nature. The weak for energy from fat is the pure lactic stuff. Which in general is the weak link, its a emergency system imo, after a max lactic effort we are 100% useless, can,t move a finger. So in a danger situating you can only use it once, if it fails you are done.

In sports for example, start a rugbygame with a max 400 meter, and start right after you stop running, :D The opposition will crush you in a few minutes.
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Re: Performance Diet Types and Terminology

Post by left coaster » June 13th, 2016, 5:25 am

Tim K. wrote:Lefty, Im trying to get my head around what your calling a "full KETO diet". I have never heard of such a thing and can not imagine any such diet being even remotely possible as basically everything has carbohydrate in it, including meat, yes very little but it does have glycogen.

From my understanding, a ketogenic diet is simply a diet that provides the required conditions to encourage the genesis of ketone bodies, 0 carbs not required.
Tim, my interpretation of a 'full keto' diet vs. another type of LCHF diet like the Atkins diet has more to do with the percentage/ratio of calories derived from fat and how strictly carbohydrates are controlled. This link provides a good example of how I conceptualized these differences in my post https://www.charliefoundation.org/explo ... g-the-diet.

The pop culture/internet seems to use LCHF and Keto diets interchangeably, for someone with my background this lacks adequate specificity. I think it may also contribute to some of the misunderstandings on this thread and in the general public. A "full Keto diet" in my interpretation restricts net carbs to somewhere below 30-50 net grams per day in a carefully controlled manner that accounts for individual differences in body weight and level of restriction needed to remain in a ketogenic state 24/7, aka the individual constantly remains keto adapted.

There are too many examples on the internet of people citing a few studies about medical benefits of ketosis for issues like cancer or cognitive function in older adults and then falsely generalizing i.e. to all cancer or concluding that all healthy adults have better cognitive performance while in a ketosis state. It's just not true. Using the simple example of someone who has a close relative with schizophrenia, there is new evidence that these family members are genetically predisposed to lower levels of glutamate in their brains while maintaining normal levels of GABA. For someone like this further reductions in glutamate could be detrimental to cognitive function and possibly even harmful as glutamate has a key role in neuroplasticity.

After studying brain science most of my adult life I have become very cautious about taking any action that modifies neurotransmission in my brain. For example, I have never taken a neurotropic medication, I actively avoid acetylcholine inhibitors in cold medicines and muscle relaxants etc. That's just me though, I also know a psychiatrist or two who do not share my perspective and who actively self-medicate. I always joke to myself that getting high on your own supply may not be a good idea :)
100m: 15.5, 1Min: 353, 500m: 1:29, 5K: 19:41.2, 10K: 40:46

"The difficult is what takes a little time; the impossible is what takes a little longer"

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Started rowing September 2015

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Re: Performance Diet Types and Terminology

Post by mdpfirrman » June 13th, 2016, 9:06 am

Interesting Lefty. I recently added Caprylic Acid to my daily supplements I take. Caprylic Acid in the gel capsule is the same stuff being marketed as "Brain Octane" by the guy that markets "Bullet Proof Coffee", except the supplement I take is like 1/3 the cost of this overpriced marketed crap.

Caprylic Acid is supposed to be one of the best MCTs you can take. I'll have to read up on these different approaches more. I do know Caprylic Acid (from experience) can make you feel like garbage at first without taking Molybdenum along with it. Caprylic Acid kills a lot of the bad bacteria in your colon causing "die off" symptoms. It's pretty powerful stuff if you eat like a garbage can. If your diet is relatively clean, you won't feel it nearly as bad but it could (according to the MCT diet) improve performance. You can buy it pretty reasonably priced. I got two large bottles (with like 180 in them each) for around $20 US.
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Re: Performance Diet Types and Terminology

Post by markinnb » June 13th, 2016, 12:19 pm

left coaster wrote:7 pages and growing, looks like there was an 'appetite' for this type of thread ;)
there may have been interest but perhaps it was not the interest you had hoped for.

we came here for the dinner and then got hooked into coming back due to the entertainment.
Since repeat performances were non stop and of no extra charge, we kept coming back for more...
we paid our 2 bits for a high diving act and we got that and more !
dinner and a show.
of the first 100 posts, 30-40 had not much to do with the topic.
There was only a mild interest in this at the start.
however, the thread had a huge jump in views AFTER the storm started.
I suspect that many of the views were to see the discussion between the two players.
as their tempest in the tea cup went pretty much the same as every other internet argument.
it did seem odd though, one fellow was making these ferocious drive shots, all kills, while the opponent simply returned them rather calmly, lobbing them back.
which seem to infuriate the first player all the more.
I also suspect that a few people refrained from making a contribution out of concern that they too would have everything questioned and told that they were doing it all wrong and what not.
t's not worth the bother.

ADditionally, your title says Performance Diet Types and Terminology " so I thought that you were interested in ALL diets and whatnot. however, in the body, you pretty much excluded every other diet than LCHF, your bias was immediately apparent. you probably weren't aware that you showed your preference too soon, in your opening statement. If people saw that your title said one thing but you had already made up your mind as to your preference in the opening statement, then few people who follow moderate or high carb diets are going to have any input.

There's a few people who follow moderate to high carb, with moderate to low fat diets and who perform adequately. or at least as good as they want. They are certainly not going to post anything up when you have someone ready to point out their errors.
"It's hard enough as it is without doing it all wrong."

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Re: Performance Diet Types and Terminology

Post by markinnb » June 13th, 2016, 2:32 pm

that you in " you have someone ready to point out their errors" is not to imply that you had Tim in the wings to post replies . It may seem that way but the 'you' in that sentence is being used in the general use of the word. it wasn't referencing you , leftcoaster.
for the sake of clarity, I should have written " when there is someone ready to point out their errors " or " when one is looking for slight errors in a person's post ". My apologies for any misunderstanding that I caused.
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Re: Performance Diet Types and Terminology

Post by markinnb » June 13th, 2016, 2:40 pm

MCT oil etc.

What I find interesting is that the higher fat diet which was popular in the 70-90's is now stronger than ever. It has never faded away, so just like lava lamps, it has been steadily rising in popularity for years.
MCT oils were all the rage when I was in my late 20's and early 30's. Every supplement company sold bottles of the stuff : Twinlab had MCT fuel ( they were disallowed to use the word fuel in the later years - for all their products ).
Like everything in that industry- it is fad driven and when something else came along- the interest in mct oil sort of drifted away.
I had access to litres of coconut oil so I mixed it with peanut butter.
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Re: Performance Diet Types and Terminology

Post by Tim K. » June 13th, 2016, 3:57 pm

Watch for a minute, or more.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GC1vMBRFiwE

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Re: Performance Diet Types and Terminology

Post by G-dub » June 13th, 2016, 8:19 pm

Very informative Tim. I wish that the tests on athletes would expand beyond ultra endurance athletes. They would seem to a dummy like me the exact type to do as well or better LC.
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Re: Performance Diet Types and Terminology

Post by Tim K. » June 13th, 2016, 8:30 pm

Tim K. wrote:Watch for a minute, or more.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GC1vMBRFiwE

LOL I just realized I didnt put the relevant time in the post.......

47:00. It is in regards to the rate a keto adapted athlete vs not can use fat.

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Re: Performance Diet Types and Terminology

Post by mdpfirrman » June 13th, 2016, 9:03 pm

Saw something interesting this week as applies to this discussion / this thread. Was watching a PBS (Public Broadcasting System) show soliciting their usual funding this weekend with a special by Mark Hyman, MD on "Eat Fat to get Thin". It's a new "program" which is just about LCHF approach while supplementing with MCT Oils. What I found interesting on his website (his program is geared toward overweight / inactive people) he mentions who this program is NOT for - among them -- "Performance Athletes".
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Re: Performance Diet Types and Terminology

Post by left coaster » June 13th, 2016, 11:00 pm

markinnb wrote:
left coaster wrote:7 pages and growing, looks like there was an 'appetite' for this type of thread ;)
ADditionally, your title says Performance Diet Types and Terminology " so I thought that you were interested in ALL diets and whatnot. however, in the body, you pretty much excluded every other diet than LCHF, your bias was immediately apparent. you probably weren't aware that you showed your preference too soon, in your opening statement. If people saw that your title said one thing but you had already made up your mind as to your preference in the opening statement, then few people who follow moderate or high carb diets are going to have any input.

There's a few people who follow moderate to high carb, with moderate to low fat diets and who perform adequately. or at least as good as they want. They are certainly not going to post anything up when you have someone ready to point out their errors.
That's a good observation. I led in with LCHF diets because I find the termonology ambiguous and am generally confused about what people mean when they reference LCHF. My 'personal' take on LCHF is very moderate, and is more about modest carb intake. in my more recent posts I think you will interpret (or so I intended) that i believe elevated blood glucose post exercise is key to glycogen loading in the brain. this can only be done with a modest/moderate amount of carbs that are taken onboard with the correct timing.

People have been performing well on high carb diets for ever. I don't see a shift to world records going out exclusively to LCHF dieters. As much as I respect Shawn and his recent achievements I actually believe he could be even faster on the shorter distances if a bit heavier and if he wasn't chronically carb depleted. His achievements are even more impressive because he has been able to do them on a LCHF diet, I don't believe the LCHF diet is the reason he is successful. Some better astrocytic glycogen loading could give him the push needed to maintain his incredible split times through to the finish of the current 500m goal (or so my theorizing/research tells me. like all research, the null hypothesis is equally valuable).
100m: 15.5, 1Min: 353, 500m: 1:29, 5K: 19:41.2, 10K: 40:46

"The difficult is what takes a little time; the impossible is what takes a little longer"

6'1", 235, 47yrs, male
Started rowing September 2015

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