On this episode of the LCHF Podcast, Vinnie Tortorich looks at finding explosive energy on the the diet. More and more sports teams are becoming fat adapted as they look for ways to improve their players performance. Can it do the same for you?
Brad Brown: On this edition of the LCHF podcast, Vinnie Tortorich all the way from America, join us once again. Our question today is slightly longer than normal but it’s fascinating. It comes from Mark Evans, who is from Australia. He is an Aussie rules football player. He plays at a semi-professional level and he has done so for a number of years in the South Australian National Football League. He recently took interest in the Melbourne Demons’ adaptation to the LCHF diet.
He would describe himself as someone who has for years followed the traditional health guidelines, however he has struggled to maintain the athletic frame of elite footballers. Last pre-season he attempted low carb diet without increasing fat intake, and really struggled for energy and felt constantly hungry. He has recently adopted a low carb healthy fat diet and increased his fat intake. He has seen a reduction in his skin folds and as a result he looks and feels much more athletic. He finds himself recovering much better after training and he is satiated for much longer after eating. As well as this, even after demanding training sessions lasting up to two hours, he feels like he has got plenty of energy.
But, one thing he has noted that during performance in repeated explosive efforts he feels quite fatigued quite quickly, and struggles to maintain the intensity that he needs to play at. While he is not overly concerned at this point in time as they are currently in the pre-season phase, this is something that he would like to over come when the season phase begins. As he is sure you are aware, AFL games last over two hours and have significant aerobic and anaerobic demands and requirements. He was hoping you could provide any nutrition tips to enhance his on field performance. More specifically to fuel continual explosive efforts, as he would love to continue on the LCHF diet and share the benefits thereof.
Can you hit top gear on the LCHF diet?
Vinnie Tortorich: I get this all the time. I know that Dr Phinney and Jeff Volek are working on this right now. One of the downfalls for having a high fat low carb diet is that you can be aerobic all day long and even kinda go into fourth gear. I was talking about it in our last episode, where when you get to a hill you might not have that fifth gear, that top gear, to get to. You can fall a little short. Something like AFL football, I understand it as being kind of like rugger, as the British call it, they need to kick it up a notch often. They are not just doing it at aerobic pace, they’re hitting anaerobic pace a lot. It is one of those tough things.
I know that Dr D’Agastino here in the United States is working with actually taking in some sort of supplementation of ketones. Where you take a ketone supplement to try and up that. Right now we have nothing until we hear from Phinney and Volek and see what they have learned from their last studies. That is a case where you may need to sugar trickle. It doesn’t mean that you eat a ton of sugar before the game, but during the game if they have some kind of sports drink that you can sip from every now and then. Again, you won’t need gulps of it that you needed before. If you are fat adapted, just a little will go a very long way to give you what you need without causing any stomach distress. Without really pulling you out of your low carb high fat diet when the game is over with.
A touch of sugar may be your answer – but only a touch
I would suggest that in practise he start toying around with how much sugar he can get away with without getting all sugared up. As soon as Volek and Phinney come out with their study, and Dr D’Agastino, whom I speak with often. Like I said, they are working with a drink or some kind of food supplement that athletes can take to hit that fifth gear. It has something to do with chain amino acids, which I have been talking to D’Agastino a lot about lately. So hang in there, figure it out using things like YOUCAN could help, but that is kind of a slow burn too. So sugar might be the only thing you can use.
BB: Vinnie Tortorich thanks very much for that, appreciate your time today on the LCHF Podcast. From the two of us till next time it’s cheers.
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