How Carb Cycling Increases Fat Burning And Preserves Muscle Mass

Carb Cycling Intro

Carb Cycling is a dieting method used to cleverly manipulate your carbohydrate intake in a way to confuse your body into burning fat while maintaining your muscle mass. Carbohydrates are your worst enemy when it comes to fat loss but your best friend for gaining and maintaining muscle mass. However, with carb cycling you can manipulate your carbohydrate intake in such a way that it will help you burn fat, maintain muscle mass and control your hunger cravings.

Carb Cycling Works

Carb cycling is one of the few diet plans that works when properly done. It has been successful for many bodybuilders and fitness models when trying to achieve the lowest possible body fat percentage without sacrificing too much muscle mass.

So how can these bodybuilders and fitness models achieve such low body fat percentages through carb cycling? It has a lot to do with how cycling your carbohydrates influences certain key hormones.

How Carb Cycling Affect Your Hormones

Carbohydrates definitely influence the hormonal environment of the body. Some of the hormones that are effected by carbohydrate consumption are…

  • Insulin
  • Leptin
  • Cortisol
  • Serotonin.
  • Carb Cycling Hormone Insulin

One of the biggest hormones effected with the consumption of carbohydrates is insulin. Insulin is known as a storage hormone. One of the duties that insulin has is to take sugar out of the blood stream and transport it to the cells to be used as immediate energy. When there is more sugar in the bloodstream then can be use for quick energy, the excess sugar is then transported to the fat cells. This is the bodies natural survival method in case of starvation. Carb cycling will help lower the consistent rise of insulin by controlling the amount of carbohydrates that comes in.

Carb Cycling Hormone Leptin

Leptin is a regulatory hormone for hunger that is produced mostly by fat cells. In a carb cycling diet program, leptin is released on high carbohydrate days. Once released from the fat cells, it moves through the bloodstream to the brain. When it arrives to the brain, the signal that it sends to the rest of the body is to stop eating because there is enough energy in the fat and carbohydrate stores. It also signals the body to start burning fat.

On a low calorie or low carbohydrate diet, very low levels of leptin are produced. This means…

  • Increased hunger
  • Conservation of incoming calories as fat

Burns more muscle as fuel

Slows metabolism.

By incorporating carb cycling you will be able to balance the release of leptin by alternating the intake of carbohydrates day by day to increase the metabolic.

Carb Cycling Hormone Serotonin

Serotonin is a hormone that boosts mood and also is known as the feel good hormone. Consuming carbohydrates increases serotonin production. However, when on a diet that restricts carbohydrates for an extend length of time, serotonin production drops and hunger increases. Carb cycling is a method to balance serotonin levels and help control hunger cravings.

Carb Cycling Hormone Cortisol

Cortisol is a stress hormone that is released during a fasted state. When cortisol is released, it tells the body to start breaking down muscle and stored fat to be used as fuel during a carbohydrate depleted state.

With carb cycling, excessive cortisol production is prevented. Just when the body starts to become catabolic after the no carbohydrate and low carbohydrate days, the high carbohydrate day will re-set the hormones and prevent muscle breakdown.

Carb Cycling 3 Day Program

In this 3 day carb cycling diet program, protein and fat intake will remain the same everyday. While your carbohydrate intake will vary.

  • The 3 days in this carb cycling program are…
  • No carbohydrate day
  • Low carbohydrate day
  • High carbohydrate day.
  • Carb Cycling – No Carbohydrate Day
  • On this day, you will want to exclude all carbohydrates and focus on leafy vegetables and protein.
  • Good choices of vegetables on a no carbohydrate day for carb cycling include…
  • Broccoli
  • Spinach
  • Asparagus
  • Lettuce.

Good choices of Protein on a no carbohydrate day for carb cycling include…

  • Fish
  • Chicken
  • Whey Protein
  • Turkey.
  • Eat small meals 5 to 6 times a day. Try to consume around 30 grams of protein with every meal and

eat as much leafy vegetables as you want.

Carb Cycling – Low Carbohydrate Day

On this day, your diet will be the same as the no carbohydrate day except you will want to incorporate no more then 30 grams of starchy carbohydrates into each of the first 3 meals of your day. Consuming your starchy carbohydrates earlier in the morning will help you burn more fat when you sleep at night.

Good choices of starchy carbohydrates for carb cycling include…

  • Oatmeal
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Brown rice.
  • Starchy vegetables…
  • Corn
  • Peas
  • Squash
  • Beans.

Carb Cycling – High Carbohydrate Day

On this day, you will want to increase your starchy carbohydrate intake to 40 to 50 grams with each of the 5 to 6 meals you eat throughout the day.

Carb Cycling Strategy

When you incorporate all these days into a rotation for the week, you will minimize fat storage and muscle break down.

Here is an example of how to incorporate a carb cycling rotation for a week…

  • Monday: High carbohydrate day
  • Tuesday: Low carbohydrate day
  • Wednesday: No carbohydrate day
  • Thursday: High carbohydrate day
  • Friday: Low carbohydrate day
  • Saturday: No carbohydrate day
  • Sunday: No carbohydrate day.

Carb Cycling Rules

During days when you have an extreme weight lifting routine or a workout that takes a lot of energy to perform with the Testosterone pills, you will want to schedule your high carbohydrate days to coincide. Try to avoid two or more high carbohydrate days in a row. Do not go 3 or more no carbohydrate days in a row. When training for endurance, exclude all no carbohydrate days and use only low and high carbohydrate days for the week. For obese trainees, perform only one high carbohydrate day during the week instead of two until enough body fat is lost.

Carb Cycling Final Thought

When all other fat loss diets have failed, give this diet plan a try. You will be surprised how effective carb cycling can be for fat loss.

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