Diets explained part 1: High carb/low fat

This is the first blog post in a series of posts about the 3 most important diets: high carb/low fat, (s)low carb/medium fat and low carb/high fat (keto).

These diets are the main building blocks for everyone who wants to lose body fat and/or gain muscle mass. There are no other "secret" diets out there. Everything else is just a subset of one the above.

Because in the end, calorie balance and macro nutrient distribution is what matters the most!

Every one of these posts has the same structure, to make it easy for you to compare. They contain the necessary information to start your diet right now. Because you don't have to spend hours to understand the fundamentals of fat loss, it's quite simple. So I kept all posts as short as possible.

Now, let's dive right in! This post explains the high carb/low fat diet that most bodybuilders and athletes use.

Macro nutrient distribution

  • At least 0.5g per kg body weight of fat
  • Roughly 2g per kg body weight of protein
  • Remaining calories from carbs

Simple as that. No, carbs don't make you fat, that's nonsense! Too many calories make you fat. Period.

Focus on

Unprocessed carbs like sweet potatoes, rice or fruits. Unprocessed food doesn't make you fat, but it's not ideal and unhealthy. The less processed, the better. As little added sugar as possible.

High quality protein from lean meat and dairy or lentils and soy products, if you're vegan.

Healthy fat sources like fatty fish (or fish oil), nuts, eggs and nut oils as well as avocado. No trans fats! All other fats are fine, including saturated fats. Just make sure to get a good mix of all fats.

No or very little alcohol.

Sample meal plan structure

Subject: 80kg | 16% body fat | male

Keep in mind:

  • Carbs: 4kcal per g
  • Protein: 4kcal per g as well
  • Fat: 9kcal per g

If muscle gain is the main goal

  • Caloric needs to gain muscle mass: 2.900kcal
  • Macro breakdown
    • 40g fat = 360kcal
    • 160g protein = 640kcal
    • 2.900kcal - 360kcal - 640kcal = 1.900kcal remaining = 475g carbs

If fat loss is the main goal

  • Caloric needs to be in a caloric deficit: 2.100kcal
  • Macro breakdown
    • 40g fat = 360kcal
    • 160g protein = 640kcal
    • 2.100kcal - 360kcal - 640kcal = 1.100kcal remaining = 275g carbs

Done. Hit these macros and you're good to go. Job done! Seriously. That's it. You don't have to hit them religiously of course. But if you shift your macros, try to rather eat more fat and less carbs, in order to keep your hormonal balance in check. Don't eat less than 0.5g/kg of fat! Protein is fixed.

You don't have to do any exercise to lose body fat, but you will get quicker results, if you add some.

Who should do high carb/low fat

People who:

  • Need a lot of (explosive) power, like strength athletes and construction workers. Basically people who need a lot of strength all week
  • Have good insulin sensitivity (do you feel sluggish after a high carb meal? then you have bad sensitivity!)
  • Are not (pre-)diabetic
  • Can control themselves when eating carbs and enjoy carb-rich meals
  • Want to increase muscle mass

What to do next

Calculate your caloric needs with the nifty calculator below and then apply the rules above to determine your macro nutrient distribution.

Then get yourself some nice food to fill those macros by tracking your food and reach your goals!

If you have further questions, go right ahead and let me know in the comment section down below, I'm happy to help!

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