A diet that is protein-heavy has become increasingly popular in the last few years, for a couple of reasons. The Atkins diet and other diets that focus on eating mostly protein have been shown to be quite effective in helping people lose body fat. For bodybuilders, protein-heavy diets aid in increasing muscle mass and strength.
However, a problem starts to appear with this style of eating: ketones. These are toxic chemicals produced in the body when more than 30% of your intake of calories come from protein. As ketones accumulate, your kidneys begin to work harder at trying to rid the body of them. The danger is dehydration, diabetic coma or even death.
For bodybuilders who hope to gain mass with a high protein diet, the danger is still present. The body has to eliminate ketones properly or problems will arise. Don’t you need protein to repair and rebuild muscle tissue? Yes, of course. In fact, there are several measures you can take to avoid the risk of dangerously high levels of ketones.
1) Be sure to consume plenty of slow releasing carbohydrates. Brown rice, sweet potato, oatmeal, vegetables, etc…
2) Drink plenty of water. Your system uses water to rid itself of toxins. As a bodybuilders, you should consume at least one gallon of water per day.
3) Exercise more frequently. Be sure to maintain intense training session at least three days per week. This will ensure that more of the protein consumed is absorbed into the muscles and less will be “floating around” creating byproducts.
Besides protein is not calorie free. High consumption of any nutrient will cause the body to store fat. Ever seen an in-shape football player quite the sport, but continue to eat the same? They gain large amounts of fat. Why? because they are no longer training intensely and their bodies don’t need nearly as much fuel. The excess calories simply get stored as fat. So stay active, or be sure to eat less.
As with all things related to health and fitness, do your homework along with your weight work, and you should get the results you want without complications.
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