Stop the Yo-Yo, and Grow (muscles, not your gut)
A marginally wise man once said:
“There is actually science behind the idea that humans want what they can’t have or don’t have. One of these being insecurity, not being satisfied or feeling self-conscious of the present. When we are lean we actually think we are not lean enough, making us want to do a 180 and start chasing size. The same can be said for being heavier with a little extra softness; we are not satisfied with the current look and want something better.
We also picture in our minds that being lean is actually more satisfying than what it truly is. When I look back at progress pictures when I was single digit body fat I cannot believe I was that lean, but at the time I did not think I really was. We romanticize things that are not readily available, so we deviate from the plan. We do “mini cuts” and short bursts of calorie cutting to hopefully not get too fat.
Truthfully, all this does is hinder the end game results. Now, there is some benefit to mini cuts such as increasing insulin sensitivity if the body becomes resistant. As far as the prevention of body fat accumulation, the best way to avoid this is to slowly progress calories.
So, let’s break away from the notion that we want what we don’t currently have, and put on considerable muscle mass. The key to any mass building program is to progressively increase calories until that caloric intake is higher than what it was before a caloric deficit program, while also being leaner at a higher body weight. If fat gain is a concern, then be even more deliberate about small increases in overall calories.”
That marginally wise man (emphasis on marginally) was me. We previously discussed the importance of committing to a plan and how important it was to stick to that commitment. You need to eat big, train big, and supplement big, to ultimately get big. We focused on high calorie supplements that would put us into an optimal position to grow.
High calorie supplements are great, but what about digesting all of those calories? If we don’t partition these macronutrients correctly we can never put on muscle efficiently. A major absence in the notion of gaining muscle efficiently.
The Problem with Poor Digestion
Improper food digestion can lead to heart disease, kidney problems, clogged arteries, colon issues, and immune problems. Not to mention, it’s extremely uncomfortable. Digestive issues are very interesting, in that they can cause systemic issues within the body outside of the digestive system. Proper food absorption is not only key for building muscle, but also maintaining health.
For the sake of all we love: poor nutrition also makes it very difficult to convert the food you are consuming to precious muscle tissue. The horror!!!
Yes, poor nutrient absorption makes it very difficult for muscle conversion. You can pound away all the food you want, but if you cannot absorb those nutrients it’s not going to do much more for you than make you fat.
Poor digestion can also either cause food to move too quickly or not quick enough through the digestive track. Moving too fast can cause improper absorption of micro and macro nutrients. Moving too slow and sitting in the colon too long can cause it to enter back into the bloodstream or cause colon issues and diseases.
Understanding what works for your body is only part of the equation; nonetheless a big one at that. You need to know how your body digests lactose (dairy), gluten, and various other foods. While it is important to gain a basic understanding of food intolerances, you will still need to consume protein, carbs, and fats.
As bodybuilders, we consume lots of protein, carbs, and fats; however, we typically don’t do much more than the average population when it comes to optimizing our digestion to support these excess macros. Certain digestive enzymes can actually help aid in the digestion of high amounts of proteins, fats, and carbs.
Amylase is the enzyme found in both saliva and the intestine (made by the pancreas) and is responsible for breaking up dietary carbohydrates. Many bodybuilders over carb (subjective) themselves. This is especially the case if using exogenous insulin to help shuttle these carbs. The body can only process so much, and the different amylase enzymes help to digest and break down all of these sugars.
Proteases are the class of enzymes associated with protein breakdown during the digestive process. They work by performing proteolysis, which is protein catabolism done through hydrolysis of the protein’s peptide bonds.
Lipases are like proteases and amylases, but breakdown dietary fats. It does this by hydrolyzing them into smaller chains, which are then easier to absorb into the system. For instance: triglycerides are broken down into their component fatty acids and glycerol molecules; thus, allowing the fatty acids to then go and perform their roles.
All three of these important digestive enzymes can be found in Redcon1 GI Juice. On top of that, GI Juice also contains pancreatin, pepsin, ox bile (yes, it’s what you think it is), bromelain, and betaine HCL. A good mix of these ingredients and digestive enzymes will help keep your body and digestive system functioning well.
Nutrient Partitioning Importance
So, proper digestion and absorption are important…true. We know why improper digestion is bad, but why is proper digestion good? Well if muscle gain is a goal of yours (and I am assuming if you’re reading this it is) then we want to ensure nutrients are being partitioned efficiently and effectively.
Nutrient partitioning is typically excluded to just carbs and the way they are absorbed. This is true, but fat and protein nutrient partitioning is just as paramount. You want protein to be synthesized, and fat is very important for muscular hypertrophy, joint health, and cholesterol health.
Carbs being the most important in partitioning, we need to ensure that our bodies remain insulin sensitive and that it does not become resistant.
The regulation of blood sugar is one of the most important bodily processes that has a multitude of different functions. Blood sugar is regulated through the pancreas, which secretes insulin whenever a certain amount of sugar is detected in the blood. Once released, insulin stimulates the absorption of sugar into muscle and fat cells; think of insulin like a key that opens the door for glucose.
Decent insulin sensitivity encourages muscle glycogen replenishment (glycogen stores energy), but insulin resistance, on the other hand, promotes fat storage as well as a host of additional negative effects.
You may be thinking “what does digestion have to do with this?” A lot, actually. Improper digestion of carbs can essentially throw a wrench in this whole mechanical process. Without the presence of carbs (by improper absorption) the body has no reason to release insulin.
As we have discussed, GI Juice has everything needed to help properly digest important nutrients needed for muscle gain and overall health. One cool aspect of GI Juice is the absence of excess calories typically found in greens formulas. Full of antioxidants and effective digestive enzymes, you are ensuring maximum absorption of key nutrients and macros to help keep the body healthy and progressing forward.