Dietary Tips and Rationale

Explanation of Dietary Guidelines

Eat 3-6 Meals

Rationale (ISSN Position Stand on Meal Frequency)

See Possible Strategies

  1. Increasing meal frequency does not appear to favorably change body composition in sedentary populations.
  2. If protein levels are adequate, increasing meal frequency during periods of hypoenergetic dieting may preserve lean body mass in athletic populations.
  3. Increased meal frequency appears to have a positive effect on various blood markers of health, particularly LDL cholesterol, total cholesterol, and insulin.
  4. Increased meal frequency does not appear to significantly enhance diet induced thermogenesis, total energy expenditure or resting metabolic rate.
  5. Increasing meal frequency appears to help decrease hunger and improve appetite control.

La Bounty PM, Campbell BI, Wilson J, Galvan E, Berardi J, Kleiner SM, Kreider RB, Stout JR, Ziegenfuss T, Spano M, Smith A, Antonio J (2011). International Society of Sports Nutrition position stand: meal frequency. J Int Soc Sports Nutr.16, 8:4.

Eat higher carbohydrate meal (with protein) very soon after exercise


See Guidelines

  • Improves post workout recovery (Niles 2001)
    • Faster rate of muscle glycogen re-synthesis
      • 50% more glycogen can be stored (Friedman 1991)
    • Improved performance in subsequent exercise
    • Less muscle damage
  • Increased protein synthesis
    • Nearly 3 fold increase (Levenhagen 2001)
    • Decreases post exercise cortisol levels
  • Increase lean muscle mass (Esmarck 2001, Holm 2004)
  • Decreases risk of injury (Flakoll 2004)

Counter Argument

  • Ingestion of sugar (glucose) has shown to acutely depress testosterone by 25% (Iranmanesh 2012, Caronia 2013).

Caronia LM, Dwyer AA, Hayden D, Amati F, Pitteloud N, Hayes FJ (2013). Abrupt decrease in serum testosterone levels after an oral glucose load in men: implications for screening for hypogonadism. Clin Endocrinol (Oxf). 78(2), 291-6

Iranmanesh A, Lawson D, Veldhuis JD (2012). Glucose ingestion acutely lowers pulsatile LH and basal testosterone secretion in men. Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab. 302(6):E724-30.

Eat fruits or vegetables

Eat high fiber foods

Possible Strategies

Moderate dietary fat


Possible Strategies

Counter Arguments

Hämäläinen E, Adlercreutz H, Puska P, Pietinen P (1984). Diet and serum sex hormones in healthy men. J Steroid Biochem. 20(1):459-64.

Limit sugar consumption

Possible Strategies

Eat a variety of foods

  • Better ensures ingestion of all essential nutrients
  • Decreases risk of developing food intolerances

Related Articles