FHO – Nutrition
There is no “best” diet. When it comes to dieting, the best diet is the one that you can stick too for the long run.
The Vertical Diet
I personally follow a modified version of the The Vertical Diet by Stan Efferding. My modifications are mostly just swapping the red meat for chicken, I explain the reason for this change in my red meat and diverticulitis section.
The Vertical Diet is a high protein meal prep diet that restricts FODMAP foods for easy digestion. Learn about FODMAP foods here. I recommend watching his seminar even if you don't care for The Vertical Diet. Its over 2 hours long so here are my notes.
- I recommend an app called MacroFactor to track your macros. Make sure to have a scale to track your weight. I use a Withings scale.
- My Macros are: Protein 40%, Fat 25%, Carbs 35%
Maintaining muscle mass, 0.8 of protein per pound of body weight. Gaining muscle mass, 1g of protein per pound of body weight. These numbers aren't meant to be used if you are obese.
If your an advanced lifter, check out Jeff Nippard's video about high protein diets.
If you are vegan or vegetarian, you will need to eat a lot more protein to get the adequate amount of amino acids for protein synthesis. What I've Learned has a great video on this.
You should get no more than 25% to 30% of your daily calories from fats.
Trans fats may be even more dangerous because they raise LDL, or “bad” cholesterol levels and lower HDL, the “good cholesterol” at the same time.
- Iodine salt and sodium is recommended. Iodine is strongly stimulative of the thyroid which directly impacts metabolism. I highly recommend this salt. Warning: If you are salt sensitive, you might want to watch your salt intake more closely. Pre-packaged foods have very high sodium. Only take this if you are cooking your meals.
Red Meat & Diverticulitis
I have family history of diverticulitis. A high red meat diet has been linked to increasing the development of diverticulitis by 58%.
There isn't a solid understanding on why this happens but one popular theory is the heme iron changing the bowel flora.
The reasons above are why chicken is my main protein source.
Red meat doesn't have to be completely avoided, it has a lot of great nutritional value.
I switched to egg whites in order to lower my cholesterol. My daily cholesterol intake was 1300mg when eating 5 whole eggs a day, where 300mg and lower is consider healthy.
Throwing out the yolk, your missing out on Vitamin A, Vitamin E, Vitamin D, Vitamin K, DHA and Carotenoids. I make up this with my multivitamin and other foods in my diet.
- I have family history of diverticulitis so it is recommended that I have a high-fiber diet. High-fiber diets are contested by Stan Efferding. I personally need to do more research into this.
Do not drink coffee as soon as you get up. Caffeine consumed as soon as you get up is largely wasted because this is when you’re producing peak cortisol.
It is recommended to drink coffee between 0900 to 1130. In the afternoon, between 1300 to 1400.
This study tells us that consuming caffeine within 6 hours of bedtime is likely to disrupt your sleep.
Sugar and Alcohol
- Sugar and Alcohol are insanely bad for your body. Cut both out of your diet if possible.
Vitamins and Supplements
Here I will mention all the vitamins and supplements I take. Supplements that I take around my workout are below in my pre, intra and post workout sections.
- Multivitamin. Zinc and magnesium are very important. I also look for a multivitamin with no vitamin A because I get a lot of vitamin A in my diet from the amount of carrots and sweet potatoes I eat.
- Vitamin D3 2,000IU. If you get a good amount of sunlight, you might not need this. I live somewhere that doesn't get a lot of sunlight. I aim for 6,000IU but 2,000IU is what I would recommend.
- Fish Oil for Omega-3 Intake. I recommend 650mg EPA and 450 DHA. When it comes to fish oil, more is not better. Triglyceride molecular form is the superior form of fish oil.
- Probiotic. This is for overall gut health. This is optional, just trying it out.
- Osteo Bi-Flex. I only take this because I blew out my ankle in the Army. I recommend if you have joint pain.
- Magnesium. I was told by doctor to take a total of 400-600mg of magnesium to help with migraines. I get ocular migraines.
- Creatine Monohydrate 5g/day. Creatine is one of the most studied and proven supplements. It is safe for long term use. This is a must unless the increase of DHT effects your hair thickness.
- Protein Powder. I will have a 40g protein shake 2 hours before I go to sleep. I personally use casein protein because it has been shown to be better for a pre-sleep protein. Rule of thumb when choosing a whey protein, if it says “Protein Blend”, stay away.. You want Protein Isolate.