Carb cycling for weight loss does it really work? We know most fat loss diets suck and are hard to follow for a long period of time.
It is REALLY hard to lose fat and stick to a diet.
Or is it?
Turns out you can implement carb cycling for weight loss and lose fat about 50% faster.
The best part is:
You don’t have to suffer by eating broccoli and chicken for every meal.
In this carb cycling for weight loss guide you will learn EXACTLY how this diet works and how you can create your own carb cycling diet menu.
But first let me ask you a question:
If you can answer the next 3 questions below with a “yes” carb cycling is something you may want to try out.
Welcome to dieting – or should I say, poor dieting. If you don’t diet correctly, you can run into a whole number of issues that impact both your progress as well as how you feel.
If you diet correctly on the other hand though, using an approach such as carb cycling, you can side step these issues, see better results than ever before, and possibly even enjoy the process along the way.
Yes, that’s right, I said enjoy (and I’m not crazy!).
This is a fact:
As a guy, dieting sucks.
There is this common notion that dieting is for women while bulking up is for men.
You need to get out of this thinking though.
If you want to look better than 95% of the guys in this world, dieting needs to be a part of your game.
When done properly, it can help you carve out your physique, shedding the excess fat that’s currently hiding your hard-earned muscle.
Hopefully you’ll never get to the point where you need to lose more than 20 pounds or so in one dieting stint (if you do, you need to re-evaluate how you bulk!), but nevertheless, a short bout of dieting can really transform your physique.
Here’s the bottom line:
Rather than viewing it as ‘dieting’ though, think of it as a simple adjustment to your nutritional program.
View it this manner and you might just find that you get a great shift in your mindset.
There is one nutrition protocol out there that stands above all the rest when it comes to burning fat and retaining lean muscle mass.
Ready to move closer to your dream physique?
Let’s get started and explain how carb cycling is the number one method of weight loss you need to be using.
First let’s discuss what carb cycling is all about.
As the name suggests, carb cycling is an approach where you are essentially adjusting your carbohydrate intake over the course of the week to meet the changing demands of your body and to help create a certain desired hormonal response to promote faster weight loss.
Don’t worry, it’s not.
On a standard diet plan, you’ll usually figure out your target calorie intake along with your target intake of carbs, proteins, and fats.
This is all very important and a must to ensure that weight loss moves along.
Once you have these targets, you simply try and reach them each and every day and if you do, you should begin seeing results. Pretty straightforward, right?
Eventually your body adapts. When you eat the same volume of food every single day, day after day, your body begins to learn what’s going on. It realizes that it’s getting less fuel than it would ideally like and as a result, it starts to shut down your metabolic rate.
Here’s the worst part:
Your entire body slows down, burning fewer and fewer calories each day.
This means that the calorie deficit you are using is no longer as great as it once was.
Slowly fat loss begins to stop.
Welcome to the fat loss plateau.
This is the situation that almost every single dieter gets stuck in at some point or another and can be one of the most frustrating times of any nutrition plan.
In fact, it’s often the time that most dieters decide to call it a day and quit their program.
With carb cycling however, because you are adjusting your calorie and macro nutrient intake over the course of the week, your body doesn’t have a chance to adapt and begin slowing down.
One day you’re taking in a low carb intake and the next, you’re doubling your intake.
This shocks your body and prevents it from thinking it’s in the serious calorie deficit and something needs to be done.
One particular hormone – leptin, which is created by your body fat cells, regulates this all. When your calorie and carbohydrate intake starts to drop exceptionally low, leptin begins to fall and this is what sets of the chain of reactions that eventually will lead to a sluggish metabolic rate.
When carbs are high, leptin gets a boost and the entire chain of reactions is broken.
By using a carb cycling plan for weight loss, you can avoid the metabolic slow down that typically happens on most diets, thus seeing faster results.
A great way to keep the metabolism high at all times and lose more fat is to take a fat burner while carb cycling. – See the top 3 fat burners here.
That’s the entire premise behind the carb cycling plan.
So it’s a plan that is designed to trick your body into thinking that it’s not dieting as hard as you are.
In addition to that, there are other benefits you can reap from carb cycling for weight loss.
Along with preventing the metabolic slow down and plateau that occurs with most diet plans, carb cycling also has other key benefits to know about.
First, it helps with food cravings.
If one day you are eating 80 grams of carbs but the next day you are eating 200 grams, this allows you a lot more leeway in terms of your food choices.
If you are craving pasta, you could have it on your highest carb day.
Especially if you combine carb cycling for weight loss with an If It Fits Your Macros approach.
Here’s the deal:
The fewer food cravings you have on your nutrition plan, the more likely you are to stick with it and in turn, the more likely you are to see results.
Along with lower food cravings, you’ll also have a decreased level of hunger as well.
This is again thanks to the fact that leptin isn’t dropping.
Here’s the kicker:
This hormone has the power to make your life miserable when you are dieting using a very low calorie approach for an extended period of time.
By using a carb cycling plan for fat loss, you’ll stagger your calorie intake so you can offset this decline in leptin better.
The end result is you put hunger behind you.
With more carbohydrates coming in, it only stands to reason that your exercise performance is going to go up.
Intense exercise demands glucose as a fuel source and the only way it’s going to get that is if you are eating carbohydrates.
The bottom line?
When using carb cycling for weight loss you’ll place your higher carb days on your heavy exercise days so you get the fuel you need to complete those workouts with intensity.
This can also help to minimize a decrease in strength as well as lean muscle mass, both of which are often very likely when using very low carb diet plans.
Let’s not forget about health.
The more calories you take in, the better your chances of hitting your nutrient targets will be.
If you are utilizing a very low carb plan, you may fall short in critical nutrients like B vitamins, fiber, and potassium.
These are critical for your overall health and well-being.
By using a carb cycling approach and having those higher carb days in there, as long as you choose wise food choices, you should end up with an improved nutritional profile.
Ever been on a low carb diet and experienced difficulty sleeping?
But it’s all a part of the dieting game.
The good news is that carb cycling tends to remedy this.
While you may still have some struggles on your very low carb days, you should find that most days you bring your carbs up, you are sleeping like a baby.
Finally, one last key benefit of carb cycling for weight loss to mention is that it can boost your mood and motivation.
The best part is:
Carbs cause the release of serotonin in the brain, which is a neurotransmitter that improves mood and your overall mindset.
It’s not abnormal to find those who are on low carb diets to experience depressive feelings of sorts, which often takes away from their desire to continue with the program altogether.
If you feel miserable, it’s not going to promote program adherence.
And, if you don’t do the program, you are never going to see results on it.
So as you can see, there is a long line-up of benefits that carb cycling brings.
Let’s look at a couple of the disadvantages now.
Like most great things in life, it’s never perfect.
The drawbacks to carb cycling are quite minimal in comparison to the benefits, but they should be noted nevertheless.
The biggest drawback is that the diet is simply a little more complex to plan.
Not only do you need to take the time to work out your daily numbers as each day of the week may vary, but when you plan your meals, you’ll have to factor this into the equation as well.
If you are someone who tends to simply eat the same thing every day while dieting to make life easy, you can’t do that on the carb cycling plan.
This said, you can still gravitate to the same types of meals as long as you understand portion sizes and can make adjustments based on what the day’s macros call for.
The second drawback is that you may notice greater fluctuations in water weight on a carb cycling for fat loss plan.
This is due to the fact that with each gram of carbohydrates your body takes in, your body will hold around 4 grams of water.
So after a high carbohydrate day, you may see the scale jump up temporarily if you weigh yourself the next day.
Here’s the deal:
For some people, seeing this can become psychologically disturbing and may make it harder to execute those high carb days.
You just need to trust in the plan that it is working and know that this weight gain is not fat gain and will be lost just as quickly as it came on.
It’s the same reason that most people lose a lot of weight when they first start out on a low carb plan. As their body flushes the water out from the reduced carb intake, the scale moves downward quickly.
It’s not fat weight, but rather, water weight loss.
These are really the only two drawbacks of the carb cycling approach so as you can see, both are relatively easy to manage.
Now let’s talk about who carb cycling is best suited for.
Everyone who is seeking fat loss results can use a carb cycling approach.
However, it does tend to be slightly better for those who are engaging in a more intense exercise program as well.
This is because intense exercise demands a higher carb intake, therefore it makes more sense to have the carbs being shuffled across the week according to the physical activity being performed.
Someone who isn’t exercising isn’t going to be using up more energy on those days, therefore they may be better suited to simply adding in the odd refeed throughout their nutrition program instead.
The bottom line?
Carb cycling is also a good idea for those who have no issue counting and tracking macros.
If you are someone who prefers not to do this, it may not be the best approach for you as it really is a firm requirement to seeing results with this plan.
If after reading this you’ve decided that carb cycling is indeed for you, read on to find out how to set up a carb cycling diet plan.
Setting up a carb cycling diet menu for fat loss isn’t as difficult as it may seem.
You just have to follow some simple steps that will get you your nutritional targets for each day during the week.
Let’s go through the steps you’ll use.
Before creating your carb cycling meals, first you need to figure out how many total calories you want to eat during the entire course of the week.
While with a regular diet approach, every day may be the same, with this approach, you’ll have low and high calorie days, so you want to make sure that your weekly total calorie balance is in still in line with your fat loss goals.
Do this by figuring out your maintenance calorie intake.
You can either use a calculator for this or simply multiply your body weight (pounds) by 15 if you are a female or 16 if you are a man.
Or, if you have been maintaining your body weight for the last while, simply use that number as your daily calorie intake.
Now take this number and multiply by 7.
Total Daily Maintenance Calorie Intake X 7 = __________
For instance, if your target maintenance calorie intake is 2500 calories per day, this means a weekly target of 17500.
Now subtract your desired weekly deficit. If you want to lose one pound per week, this means 3500 calories. If you want to lose half a pound, subtract 250 calories.
For our example, let’s use 3500 calories.
Now you have a weekly target calorie intake of 14,000 calories. Remember this number.
Now you need to figure out your total protein intake.
Generally speaking, this should stay pretty stable.
While you may increase it slightly on lower carb days, unless you are taking your carb intake very low, it can stay constant.
Aim to take in 1 gram of protein/lb. of body weight.
Here’s the deal:
If you are very lean already, bump this up to 1.15 grams/lb. to prevent the loss of lean muscle mass tissue.
Say you weigh 170 pounds, this means you’ll take in 170 grams of protein per day. Since there are 4 calories per gram of protein, that’s 680 calories worth daily or 4760 calories weekly (680 X 7 days).
Now subtract that from your target weekly calorie intake.
14,000 – 4760 = 9240 calories
This is what you have left for your carbs and dietary fats.
Now you want to think about which days you’ll use as low carb days and which you’ll use as high carb days.
Generally speaking, each intense workout should be a high carb day.
Aim for 2-3 high carb days per week with the remaining being a low carb day.
If you need to use a lower carb day on a workout day, put it on a day that you are doing a smaller muscle group like arms or shoulders.
High carb days should be focused around leg days, back days, and chest days.
So next we figure out dietary fats. You’ll want your fat intake to be slightly higher on low carb days to help offset hunger and to prevent calories from being too dramatically low.
Aim for around 0.4 grams/lb. of body weight on low carb days and 0.25 grams/lb. of body weight on high carb days. Using this approach and our example:
This puts your total weekly fat intake to 399.5 grams or 3595 calories total (since there are 9 calories per gram of fat).
This leaves you with 9240 – 3595 = 5645 calories to go towards your carbohydrate intake.
So now we have to figure out your carbohydrate intake.
This is the last and final step of the equation.
You can decide just how low you want to take you lower carb days based on what you think you can handle and your overall daily level of physical activity.
Here’s the deal:
The bigger the gap between the two days, generally the better the plan, but do keep in mind that too large and it can be hard to stick with it.
Let’s use a low carb intake of 100 grams (which is a good baseline amount).
This means you’ll be taking in 400 grams of your low carb days over the course of the week, or 1600 calories.
That leaves you with 4045 calories for carbs on higher carb days.
Divided this by 3 high carb days during the week and that leaves you with 1348 calories or 337 grams of carbs.
So after all of this, your carb cycling plan for fat loss will look as follows:
Now you just need to put this into action and you’re all set.
You can also implement a moderate carb day as well if you wish, reducing how many high carb days you have and making things less dramatic in terms of the shifts you experience.
This is entirely up to you and would require an additional step of planning.
So hopefully now you can see why carb cycling for weight loss is so effective and how you can get started putting a program together for yourself right away.
This is one carb cycling for weight loss meal plan that you can use for a long period of time until you reach your goal weight and even beyond, once you have reached your goal weight.
Many see great results using a carb cycling plan for muscle building as well, only in that instance, they’ll simply add calories to their maintenance calorie intake in order to create a calorie surplus rather than a deficit.
It can be a great way to help keep yourself lean while building muscle mass tissue.
Here’s the deal:
Any way you look at it, carb cycling isn’t going anywhere in the nutrition space and if you are serious about getting great results, it’s one plan you’ll want to consider utilizing yourself.
Many people ask me what to expect from: Carb cycling before and after?
I know a handful of people who use the carb cycling diet.
They gladly gave me a review on the carb cycling diet and how it works for them.
I tried the carb cycling diet because I wanted to lose weight.
I immediately fell in love with this diet.
My weight loss journey became somewhat enjoyable using this diet.
The best approach for me was to have 2 carb days the days when I was lifting heavy.
I lost weight fast, very fast.
Before trying the diet I was concerned that I would have low energy levels while training on low carb days.
The best part is that I have more energy on low carb days.
I don’t even get cravings anymore.
It takes a few days to get accustomed to this plan so be patient.
I would definitely recommend trying this, I also feel less bloated in my stomach especially on the low carb days.
A friend of my recommended this diet to me and at first I didn’t believe in it.
Now I use it all year around.
I use carb cycling for weight loss and when I want to build lean muscle
Just make sure you eat in a calorie deficit when cutting and calorie surplus when bulking.
That’s basically all you need to know if you know how to structure your meals.
What I love about this diet is that even if you are bulking you still maintain a lean physique.
Also you are very quick to lose weight doing carb cycling.
The best part is:
You don’t have to suffer like if you are on a low carb diet consistently.
Would not eat any other way then this, you must try it out for yourself.