Carbohydrate

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What’s up ? This is THE stephane ANDRE. With my training, I’m interested in nutrition to stay in shape. I read some advice from Arnold Schwarzenegger and I learned some good stuff.

Carbohydrates are the main source of energy in the body. All carbohydrates are sugars that are molecules containing carbon, hydrogen and oxygen. Glucose is synthesis by plants through the photosynthesis process (using the sun’s energy) or by animals during the glycogen synthesis process. But be careful when I talk about glucose (sugar), I’m not talking about table sugar. There are several categories of glucoses (sugars). Here they are:

Monosaccharides

  • Glucose (blood sugar)
  • Fructose (fruit sugar)
  • Galactose (a kind of milk sugar)

Oligosaccharides

  • Sucrose(table sugar)
  • Lactose(milk sugar)
  • Maltose (malt sugar)

Polysaccharides

  • Plant polysaccharides(starch and cellulose)
  • Animal polysaccharides (glycogen)

The speed of which carbohydrate metabolized are measured with the glycemic index. A high glycemic index (a large increase in serum glucose) indicate that carbohydrates metabolized rapidly. A low glycemic index (a small increase in serum glucose) indicates that carbohydrates metabolized slowly or differently.

What’s cool now I being able to check the gylcemic index of foods on internet. For example, Chinese restaurant rice has a very high glycemic index compared to brown rice or wild rice.

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Carbohydrates are the easiest type of food to turn into energy for the body. When carbohydrates converted to glucose, glucose circulates in the blood and helps muscle contraction. Glycogen in the muscle and liver stored for future use. A supply of carbohydrates is necessary for an ambitious bodybuilder for several reasons:

  1. Carbohydrates are a basic type of energy. Carbohydrate stored in the muscles in the form of glycogen will allow to train intense and heavy.
  2. Size of muscles increases when the body stores glycogen and water in individual muscle cells.
  3. Carbohydrates in the body have an effect that prevents the body from burning excess protein to create energy.
  4. Glucose is the main source of energy for the brain to be operational. Carbohydrate deprivation can have very negative effects on mood, personality and mental abilities.

There is a reason why carbohydrates are really needed as fuel for a workout. This is because most exercises are anaerobics exercises. Anaerobics exercises are flushed through intense puffs and exceed the body’s ability to provide enough oxygen to sustain the effort. But the carbohydrates structure allows to continue feeding the muscles during an exercise for a short period without oxygen. Therefore, when you do intensive weight training or you run a 100 meter sprint, your energy for these efforts is mainly composed of carbohydrates.

Carbohydrate supplement

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Intense training creates a demand in the body to replace glycogen and amino acids. Be careful that your body contains enough carbohydrates after training, otherwise your body may start using amino acids (protein) as a source of energy. The period during which the body is in very high demand for carbohydrates is shorter than for proteins. The best results are obtained when you give the necessary carbohydrates to your body about 20 minutes after your training.

This need for immediate replacement of glycogen is the reason why many bodybuilders use a carbohydrate supplement after training with a protein supplement. It’s very useful when you do a strength training with a cardiovascular session (treadmill, stepper or bike). If you do cardio too soon after your strength training, you’ll be depriving your body of carbohydrates. And as you lack energy, your body will quickly use your amino acids (protein) to create the energy that is missing.

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-Steph

P.S. If you’re in Miami and you like Caribbean food, go to my cousin’s bistro to eat Haitian food, click here .

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Protein (Part 3)

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Before read Part 3, be sure you read Part 1  and Part 2 .

Protein supplements

In training program, there is always a nutritional plan because to build muscle lifting weights isn’t enough. The good quantity of protein in relation to your bodyweight is an extremely important element. But as you’ve noticed, it’s difficult to eat enough protein without eating too much fat. Protein supplements are a solution.

Protein supplements can increase protein intake without increasing the fat’s amount in your body and ease protein intake several times a day. Eating several times a day is essential for a bodybuilder and having tips to make it easier is appreciated.

There is an incredible variety of protein supplements and they really have a dessert’s taste. What’s interesting is that they’re more and more rich in nutrients with vitamins and minerals and in macronutrients with proteins and carbohydrates. Find a protein supplement that meets your nutritional needs and tastes can be a help in your nutritional plan.

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As there is an incredible amount of protein supplement, there are several things to check to help you choose. First, reading the label is important because there are some that really contain too much carbohydrate. It’s good to know that carbohydrate improve the conversion of food protein to muscle protein but an excess of carbohydrate creates an excess of calories which prevents your body from easily burning fat. Therefore, it’s necessary to count the number of carbohydrate on the label.

Second, protein supplement that is consumed pure, without a meal or without carbohydrate, isn’t metabolized effectively. Research shows that for the protein to be used for protein synthesis, it must be consumed with calories, especially those from carbohydrate. Otherwise protein and used as energy production.

On the other hand, if you’re on a low carbohydrate diet and you increase your protein intake for energy (to compensate the lack of carbohydrates), it may be a good idea.

Third, the protein source of protein supplements comes from 3 foods :

  • Milk protein (whey, milk protein concentrate and caseinate)
  • Egg protein
  • Soy protein

All these proteins are of high quality. For the moment, no scientific studies show that there is one protein better than the other. Protein supplements made from milk and eggs are the most popular among bodybuilders. Soy protein has a specificity because it can reduce serum cholesterol rate in some people. This may be advisable for people with cholesterol problems but it’s careful because it’s possible to find a lot of GMOs in soy.

It’s important to remember that protein supplements aren’t created to be the only source of food protein. A balanced diet consisting of whole foods is essential for a healthy diet and building muscles.

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-Steph

P.S. If you’re in Miami and you like Caribbean food, go to my cousin’s bistro to eat Haitian food, click here.

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Protein (Part 2)

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If you didn’t read Part 1, click here .

An egg is an excellent source of protein and its protein is so good that the egg is used as a basis of comparison to evaluate the protein quality of other foods. The egg has an arbitrary value of a « perfect » 100% :

FoodProtein rating
Eggs (whole)100
Fish70
Lean beef69
Cow’s milk60
Brown rice57
White rice56
Soybeans47
Whole-grain wheat44
Peanuts43
Dry beans34
White potatoes34

In the table, there is the value of whole eggs and it’s done on purpose. There is a fashion that consists only of eating the egg’s white because the yellow contains fat and cholesterol (which the egg’s white doesn’t have). The problem is that the egg’s yellow contains as much protein as the egg white and the majority of the vitamins and minerals of the egg.

In the table, you can see that rice, potatoes and beans give less usable protein than eggs and fish. It’s because that they have few essential amino acids. However, you can combine foods that have little useful protein so that the mix of all this gives you the amount of usable protein you need.

With this combination of feeds that have little usable protein, adding a complete protein food makes an excellent meal.

This combination of food with little usable protein is convenient because these are foods that are generally low in calories and fat, which is not the case for many complete protein foods. When you try to get as much muscle as possible with less fat, it helps a lot. You can also have fat-free protein with supplements.

In Part 1, I said that foods with little usable protein devoid of some essential amino acids, that’s why you have to have a special combination with food to make up for that lack. In « Diet for a small planet » by France Moore Lappe, the following combinations are recommended :

Grains plus Seeds

  • Breads with added seed meals
  • Breads with sesame or sunflower seed spread
  • Rice with sesame seeds

Grains plus Milk Products

  • Cereal with milk
  • Pasta with milk or cheese
  • Bread with milk or cheese

Grains plus legumes

  • Rice and beans
  • Wheat bread and baked beans
  • Corn soy or wheat-soy bread
  • Legume soup with bread

By remembering these food categories, you will be able to combine your foods to have the maximum protein available for use. You can also read a nutritional guide to know which of the 8 essential amino acids is missing in a food to be more precise, but with these food categories, it’s easier.

You just have to calculate the amount of protein you need per day, apply what you just read and reach your goals.

Subscribe to my newsletter and share this article if you think it can help someone you know. Thank you.

-Steph

P.S. If you’re in Miami and you like Caribbean food, go to my cousin’s bistro to eat Haitian food, click here .

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Protein (Part 1)

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What’s up ? This is THE stephane ANDRE. With my training, I’m interested in nutrition to stay in shape. I read some advices from Arnold Schwarzenegger and I learned some good stuff.

Your body uses protein to build, repair and maintain muscle tissue. Bodybuilders have a great knowledge of nutrition, especially the protein for building muscle. Since they want to consume much more muscle than the average person, they consume more protein than average.

Your body uses protein to build muscle only if all the necessary amino acids are available. The small problem is that your body doesn’t produce by itself all the necessary amino acids. Amino acids that your body can’t produce are called essential amino acids and fortunately they’re available in foods.

Proteins are made of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen like other macronutrients, but proteins have one more element, nitrogen. Bodybuilders often explain that they have a positive or negative nitrogen balance, which means that they’re in an anabolic state (muscle gain) or in a catabolic state (loss of muscle).

Food and protein

There are foods called complete proteins, which means that they provide all the amino acids needed to create usable proteins. Milk, eggs, meat, fish and many vegetable products have complete proteins. Be careful because these foods don’t have the same amount of usable protein by weight. For example a food that contains 10 grams of protein, your body can use only 7 grams.

Here is a table that shows the amount of protein by weight and the protein’s amount used in your body as a percentage for the most common foods :

Food% Protein by weight% Net Protein Utilization
Eggs1294
Milk482
Fish18-2580
Cheese22-3670
Brown rice870
Meat and flowl19-3168
Soybean flour4261

(Whey is a byproduct of milk that contain much more protein than eggs)

This table tells us that an egg contains only 12% protein by weight. Despite this small percentage, an egg contains an amino acids balance that allows your body to use 94% of it. However, the table tells us that soy flour contains 42% protein by weight. But because of the amino acids composition, your body can use only 61%. This shows us that there is a difference between the protein’s amount in a food and the protein’s amount your body can use.

This is the end of Part 1.In Part 2, I show you that in cases where you don’t have complete protein foods, it’s possible to make combination of food to have the maximum protein used by your body.

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-Steph

P.S. If you’re in Miami and you like Caribbean food, go to my cousin’s bistro to eat Haitian food, click here .

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Basic Nutrients

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What’s up ? This is THE stephane ANDRE. With my training, I’m interested in nutrition to stay in shape. I read some advices from Arnold Schwarzenegger and I learned some good stuff.

There are 3 basics nutrients called macronutrients :

Protein

A protein is made of different amino acids to provide the materials constituting the muscle tissue. A protein is also a component used in all body organs such as tendons, bones, skin structure and other bodily functions because all enzymes are proteins.

Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates are fuel for energy. They’re made of different molecules more or less complex than those of sugar or starch.

Fats

Fats or oils contain the densest energy reserves.

Water

Water is an essential element. It make up about 72% of the muscle and most bodybuilders drink several liters of water a day.

There are several nutrients called micronutrients :

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Vitamins

Vitamins are essential chemical elements that allow several biochemical reactions.

Minerals

Minerals are essential for many vital functions of the body.

Essential amino acids

Amino acids are part of the protein that we receive from food.

Essential fatty acids

Essential acids are elements that we receive from plants or fish oils.

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-Steph

P.S. If you’re in Miami and you like Caribbean food, go to my cousin’s bistro to eat Haitian food, click here .

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Needs Of Bodybuilders

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What’s up ? This is THE stephane ANDRE. With my training, I’m interested in nutrition to stay in shape. I read a Arnold Schwarzenegger’s book « Encyclopedia of Modern Bodybuilding » and I learned some good stuff.

Bodybuilders are unique athletes in the demands they have with their body. They want a maximum of muscle mass and a minimum of fat at the same time. For football, strongman or weightlifter athletes, they have a workout program to maximize the size and strength of the musles without worrying about reducing bodyfat. For boxing, wrestling or gymnastics athletes, they have a workout program that has allowed them to lose fat to be lean without really needing a diet to reduce bodyfat.

For bodybuilding competitions, bodybuilders must achieve a bodyfat level of 15-18% for women and 5-8% for men.

To learn constantly

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Bodybuilders have a small margin of error. They eat enough calories to grow muscles and they must be able to reduce their bodyfat by losing the minimum amount of muscle to be shredded. They can use aerobic exercise to burn the extra calories but it doesn’t have to deteriorate the strength training.

Bodybuidlers need to control calories by being careful to have enough protein to build and maintain muscles. Nutrition is complex and this science has a constant evolution. That’s why nutritionists teach us new things every day.

Fortunately, there are basic principles of nutrition that are implanted and mastering these fundamentals is essential for a bodybuilder to fully utilize his/her genetic potential for his/her physical development.

Subscribe to my newsletter and share this article if you think it can help someone you know. Thank you.

-Steph

P.S. If you’re in Miami and you like Caribbean food, go to my cousin’s bistro to eat Haitian food, click here .

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Nutrition

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What’s up ? This is THE stephane ANDRE. With my training, I’m interested in nutrition to stay in shape. I read a Arnold Schwarzenegger’s book « Encyclopedia of Modern Bodybuilding » and I learned some good stuff.

Training stimulate muscle growth. To have an effective training, it’s necessary that your body has the sufficient amount of energy and enough raw materials. The role of nutrition is to carry this energy and these raw materials.

The function of nutrition is to learn how to stay lean, mean and muscular. With nutrition we learn how much food to eat in order to have the best results possible. This allows you to study the basic nutrients and calculate the amount you need. This also includes studying protein, vitamin, mineral and other supplements.

Learning nutrition allows you to be more muscular. It improves your health and improves your immune system to be able to do all your training sessions without being sick (cold for example). Good nutrition has other advantages, such as improving our recovery after training with very heavyweights, having a beautiful healthy skin, having excellent internal organs and the list is long.

Precious

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For a bodybuilder, the basic of nutrition are as precious as the basic principles of training. Exercices requires energy and the amount of nutrients you eat is essential to having the body you want.

During the Arnold Classic, athletes are interviewed after their appearance on stage. At the question « What do you feel was the most important factor that helped you get in such tremendous shape for this contest ? », athletes don’t respond that it’s thanks to bench press, squat or muscle isolation. In the majortiy of cases, they explain that they improve their nutrition or their supplement to gain muscle, lose fat and be able to train with maximum energy until the competition’s day.

It’s important to say that advance in nutrition and supplements are the main reason why we’re seeing athletes with this excellent level today. Attention, progress has improved the training with the years but training has not been revolutionized as nutrition. Training and nutrition are complementary because it’s impossible to create a champion only with good nutrition. It’s essential that athletes have an intensive training, a good mental attitude and a good knowledge of nutrition.

In the past, bodybuilders approached nutrition on instinct, seat-of-the-pants basis. In a first phase, they were building muscle and getting big, but not really ripped. In a second phase, they were getting thinner (like Harnold Poole or Vince Gironda) but they were getting small. They hadn’t found the trick yet to stay big and getting ripped at the same time.

Nutrition’s fundamental are quite simple. In fact, I can’t say that it’s simple because each body is unique. It’s important to study these basic principles to apply them to your training, to understand the needs of your body and to see how your body reacts to different diets to gain or lose weight. There is always this instinctive aspect but with this nutritive knowledge, it’s easier to adjust the quantity to have the body that you want.

Subscribe to my newsletter and share this article if you think it can help someone you know. Thank you.

-Steph

P.S. If you’re in Miami and you like Caribbean food, go to my cousin’s bistro to eat Haitian food, click here.

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