What’s up, guys? Jeff Cavalier, Athlean-X.com. Today we’re going to commit a murder. We’re going to kill four nutrition myths that need to die. They needed to die a long time ago when it comes to building muscle. Okay, let’s start off with our first one and that is “Fats make you fat”. Guys, eating a lot of fat makes you fat, just like eating a lot of carbs will make you fat, eating a lot of protein will make you fat, and eating lots and lots of food in excess of your caloric maintenance level will make you fat. We’ve talked about, in order to lose fat you have to be in a hypocaloric state.
Eating fats on their own is not going to cause a problem unless you’re eating them in excess. Here’s a little caveat when it comes to fats, however, that maybe confuses people. That is that fats on a gram by gram basis – you’ve probably heard this a million times – are more calorically dense than a gram of carbohydrates or a gram of protein.
For every gram of fats you’re looking at 9 calories, versus the 4 calories of protein, or 4 calories of carbohydrates. Because of that you can’t eat as many fats, or at least as much food containing fats as you might be able to of the other two. People that indulge in a lot of fats might find that eating high quantities of these can make them fat. It’s not the fat molecule itself that’s making you fat. Please, don’t avoid healthy fats. They are a major constituent of every cell in our body. You need them and you need them for optimal growth and hormones to be able to produce maximum muscle growth.
Do not make this mistake; let’s kill this one right away. Next up, one I can’t wait to actually personally throw a shovel full of dirt on is this idea or concept that you can’t eat past 6:00 PM, or you’re going to get fat. You’re going to turn into a big fat pumpkin because you eat after a certain period of time in the day; you’re cut off at night. It’s garbage. Guys, remember your body will utilize those calories if you’re within your caloric maintenance level. If we still have 600-1000 calories, we don’t have to get into the nuances of calorie counting. I can tell you all about how we can keep that much simpler, but we’ll do that in a whole other video. The idea is, if we’re still below our caloric maintenance levels, whether or not we eat those calories after 6:00 PM, or even 8:00 PM, or as I can even vouch for myself, I’ve been eating dinner almost every single night at 10:30 for the last three months. It has had no impact on my body fat levels. If anything, I feel I’m leaner in the last few months than I have been at any point in my life.
It doesn’t all of a sudden trigger just because the clock says that it’s after a certain point that you’re going to start putting on body fat. Your body is still utilizing those calories regardless of what time in the day you eat them. I will give you one big caveat, though when it comes to your delivery and your timing of your meals. From a blood sugar stability standpoint – I made this point very clear on this channel multiple times – your blood sugar stability is paramount as a guy who trains athletes, when it comes to optimizing performance. You don’t want to be in a low blood sugar state when you’re trying to drive and illicit great performances from athletes. I think the same thing should apply to us as human beings. If you want to optimize your function, your level of focus throughout the day, supplying your brain with the fuels it prefers at a regular interval by keeping your blood sugar stable is done by providing yourself with more frequent meals.
It has nothing to do with your ability to either store fat, or burn fat because you’re eating later in the day. So let’s quickly, please, throw one more shovel of dirt on that one and bury that forever. The next myth up is one that actually comes in the form of a question often. That is: can you build muscle if you’re following a vegan based eating plan? The idea is: no you can’t. I wonder, “why not?” Let’s start with that there’s at least a certain level of intensity needed in your workouts and if you’re providing that level of intensity to stimulate new muscle growth, a vegan following a sound nutrition plan will be able to build muscle because they can still get their protein necessary for building muscle in a vegan based eating plan.
There’s plenty of sources, and vegans that are already following a vegan based lifestyle know them very well. They could be hummus, or chick peas, they could be quinoa, and they could even be protein based supplements that are pea proteins. So they’re vegan based protein powders that they rely on to get the protein needed. Even then, how much protein is actually needed? That varies from individual to individual. It varies conservatively. Some estimates say even half a gram per pound of body weight up to a gram per pound of body weight. I even hear people say a gram and a half per pound of body weight. I think that’s a bit excessive, but it doesn’t matter. The idea that if vegans are supporting hard training – that’s the prerequisite – hard training, just like everybody else with a sound nutrition plan that has protein in it from vegan based sources; who cares? You can absolutely build muscle.
If you, or someone you know is looking or pondering the idea, don’t let somebody talk you out of it because they’re telling you that you can’t build muscle that way. It’s a complete myth. Finally, tying into this whole concept on supplementation, there’s a belief out there that supplements will get me ripped. I actually had a college roommate who did nothing, never worked out, used to show up with his bottle of fat burners and think “I’m all set.
I’m good to go. I’ve got my fat burners.” He used to even think about spot reduction in his belly from taking his fat burners. Guys, if you have an aversion to eating healthy and to having a sound approach to nutrition: forget your supplements. Your supplements won’t do anything. Remember, supplements are supposed to supplement a good nutrition plan. If a good nutrition plan is in place, supplements can make a big impact on your level of body fat. As I’ve said many times before, they provide you the option for a consistency level that might not exist otherwise. Again, for someone who is always on the road, running around from place to place, I rely on my supplements to keep me lean 365 days a year. They provide a level of consistency for me when I may be at a loss for what to eat, or may not have direct access to something that’s very consistent with what I want to eat.
I know that my supplements provide me with that option. The second thing I think supplements do is: they create an accountability factor for you early in the day. If I take my pre-workout, RX1, in the morning I already feel like I’m invested in the idea that I’m on this path today to make sure that I continue my goals of eating well to support my hard training and to keep me looking the way I look. By doing that I’m much more reluctant – I’ve found over the years – to really stray off that path. I feel like I’ve invested both the money, and I’ve invested the time to take to follow a good nutrition plan. Don’t screw it up now. Keep everything going. I find a lot of guys feel that same way about it. If you are looking to have supplements be the reason why you lose body fat then I would say just look elsewhere. But if you’re committed to your nutrition plan and are willing to take that extra step to try to speed up, or enhance what you’re seeing from your current approach to nutrition; supplements can play a big part in that as well.
As I say all the time, that is what my approach has always been, even with my own supplements, how I approach my day of eating and how they fit into it. There you have it. If you, like me, are happy that we’ve finally thrown dirt on these four myths – as a matter of fact, you even got one last kick in yourself to make sure this thing stayed down – that’s great. Make sure you leave your comments and thumbs up below. In the meantime, let me know what else you want to see, what other types of videos you want me to cover here on this channel. I’ll be more than happy to do so. We have a complete nutrition plan in our Athlean-X Factor Meal Plan that will help you to cut through a lot of the BS when it comes to nutrition and simplify it. It doesn’t have to be all that complicated, and you’ll get the results that you want to see. It’s the one I follow 365 days a year. You can get that at AthleanX.com and our Athlean-X training systems. All right, guys. I’ll be back here real soon. I’ll see you.