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Ketosis vs Leangains

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created July 23, 2012 at 7:13 PM

Which do you prefer and why? Pros/cons.

1407bd6152d9fdbc239250385159fea1

on July 24, 2012
at 02:50 AM

It was the whole "insulin drives fat storage" dogma that tipped me over the edge. "If low carb results in weight loss, then if I eat none... I'll be ripped!" Flawed logic, I know, but when first starting out, that's how it went.

Dc6407193ba441d1438f6f0c06af872b

(4400)

on July 24, 2012
at 02:26 AM

Love the post, but Mark Sisson is pro-banana and allows up to 150g carbs without worry. Not sure why he dissuaded you.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on July 24, 2012
at 01:23 AM

The two aren't mutually exclusive. Why the "or"?

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3 Answers

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1407bd6152d9fdbc239250385159fea1

on July 23, 2012
at 08:38 PM

I'll offer my experiences with both in a whimsical and light-hearted manner:

Ketogenic diet: "I can't have fruit? It'll kill me? I... I grew up with fruit, I love it, I must have been dying slowly all this time. Well, at least I can eat unlimited nut butter. Why the **** am I not lean, muscular, and a CrossFit beast? Oh, this was a terrible idea. Enough of that."

Leangains: "I can eat massive meals, drink black coffee, bang heavy weights in the gym, eat mounds of potatoes and have road-map forearms as a result? Hell yes."

This is absolutely bias, I know. Leangains is what works well for me. It's convenient as I am a college student with a big appetite and hatred for hamster-wheel tread-milling. With that said, it's just one way to skin the cat (I've always wanted to say that; thank you Mr. Wolf). Fasting seems to work better for men and certainly for people who are already pretty healthy.

With regards to the ketogenic diet, I think it's incredibly important to distinguish between ketogenic diets and low-carb diets. My personal opinion:

  • Ketogenic Diets(<30g-50g per day in most cases): Remarkable therapeutic tool for epileptics, certain cancer patients, certain metabolic disease patients, etc. Appropriate for any form of athletic performance? Nope. Appropriate for the lay person? Probably not.
  • Low-carb Diets(80g-150g per day): Good starting point for a sedentary person that forces certain problematic foods out of the equation entirely and can often normalize appetite signaling. Optimal diet for any sort of high training volume athlete? Nope. Optimal diet for most moderately active people? Maybe, maybe not.

Personally, I'm really happy that I'm no longer ketogenic (or even low carb). It made me neurotic, incapable of peak athletic performance, and frankly . . . sad that I couldn't have some blasted fresh apple cider after chopping down a Christmas tree. Though I'm sure Mark Sisson is a good guy, his carbohydrate/insulin curve graph in the Primal Blueprint began my full-scale food neuroses and made me dead-scared of bananas, which is needless to say, ridiculous. My maintenance diet is now composed of a medley of foods that result in a high-protein, moderate carb, moderate fat diet, macronutrient ratios be damned.

Now that all of that nonsense is out of the way, feel free to eat however you want such that you look, feel, and perform well.

Dc6407193ba441d1438f6f0c06af872b

(4400)

on July 24, 2012
at 02:26 AM

Love the post, but Mark Sisson is pro-banana and allows up to 150g carbs without worry. Not sure why he dissuaded you.

1407bd6152d9fdbc239250385159fea1

on July 24, 2012
at 02:50 AM

It was the whole "insulin drives fat storage" dogma that tipped me over the edge. "If low carb results in weight loss, then if I eat none... I'll be ripped!" Flawed logic, I know, but when first starting out, that's how it went.

1
C45d7e96acd83d3a6f58193dbc140e86

on July 23, 2012
at 07:39 PM

Neither. I personally do better with my activity level not in ketosis. I do an average of 150g carbs per day, keeps my energy consistent without any fluctuations even on an extremely intense day. Leangains is to regimented for me. I eat when I am hungry, and don't really snack. Most of the time I eat twice a day, sometimes three times, sometimes once.

0
3dd59bff899261860c0bdaae8540cc70

on July 23, 2012
at 10:24 PM

I personally feel awesome on both.

I know that sounds weird but I've been ZC for a couple years now and my job being EXTREMELY physically demanding-once keto-adapted-I haven't seen any performance lags.

Mind you I don't do weights that much anymore.

Leangains is a fantastic program. Martin knows his stuff and you WILL see results. Plus it kicks ass to be able to enjoy your ghrelin rush all day and then have a massive feast in the evening. Super awesome and definitely the more sustainable and enjoyable of the two, IMO.

I stay ketogenic for brain reasons and I'm doing well on it although in the future I plan on revisiting the Leangains protocol just to see what happens.

I do enjoy being a carnivore though-I've told a couple of the guys at work I'm a carnivore(they asked why I eat liver and kidney and shit) and the look on their faces was priceless.

Ah, it's the little things in life....

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