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  1. 12+ years of studying full scientific papers and thinking about human nutrition. I have an English degree but that's just to put drinks on.
  2. Once you are focused on a low-fat starch-based vegan diet, everything else you worry about (organic, supplements, etc) involves massively diminishing returns, but if people want to play around with combining foods that's great, but to pretend it has a solid scientific basis is laughable. Chronic disease is caused by intake of animal foods and grease (and to a lesser extent simple sugars), period. Remove these causes and you maximize healing potential, without having to worry about magical food combons, etc. http://veganmaster.blogspot.com/2008/07/you-are-biological-herbivore.html
  3. The key to gaining muscle and minimizing fat is a very low fat vegan diet high in complex carbohydrates, as I detail extensively in my blog. A good starting place is my first blog post, which showcases the objective reality that animal foods are horrible fuel for the human machine: http://veganmaster.blogspot.com/2008/07/you-are-biological-herbivore.html The key understanding is that humans are herbivorous primates, just like chimps and other primates.
  4. Essential oils are the highest, with clove oil being the winner by far, the most potent source of antioxidants found so far. But as far as ORAC power per gram (Trolox equivalent or whatever), spices are much more potent than berries. Clove, cinnamon, oregano, & cumin all come in before regular top foods like berries, red beans, etc. I've done a lot of research on this and compile my own top 50 list extrapolated from studies but I can't find it right now. Still, one must realize that adding tons of antioxidants can not make up for eating a lot of simple sugars and fats/oils (or animal foods of course). Healing potential is maximized on a very low fat high starch vegan diet. So if you are trying to maximize your healing potential increasing starches and further limiting fats in the diet will be vastly more effective than ANY additive actions, whether pill or "superfood." That's why "modern" drugs are nearly all failures, as nothing can compare to the huge effect of diet, our #1 contact with the environment. I go into greater detail here: http://veganmaster.blogspot.com/2008/07/you-are-biological-herbivore.html
  5. The data supports something else entirely: http://veganmaster.blogspot.com/2008/07/elevating-insulin-and-minimizing-fat.html
  6. Starches are better than simple sugars for body recomposition: http://veganmaster.blogspot.com/2008/08/ideal-mnp-diet-is-high-in-starches-low.html To maximize your results, try for 5-10% FAT (you are almost there already) and increase your intake of complex carbs. Regardless of the total kcal of a diet, the body recomposition results are a direct result of the ratio of CHO:FAT in the diet, and the ratio of starches:simple sugars (to mention 2 factors). I have broken things down into four rules of Maximum Nutrient Partitioning, which you can read all about on my blog. You are well on your way and by delving into the scientific studies on human metabolism you will help give yourself the tools for maximal results! The Four Rules Of MNP 100% Muscle: RULE #1: To optimize the efficiency of protein deposition, maximize the ratio of CHO:FAT in the diet: 75-85% CHO, 5-10% FAT, 10-15% PRO. RULE #2: To guarantee significant increases in LBM, consume more total kcal than you expend. RULE #3: To limit De Novo Lipogenesis, maximize the ratio of starches to sugars. RULE #4: To stimulate protein synthesis and macronutrient oxidation, perform regular muscle work. For further details:http://veganmaster.blogspot.com/2008/08/mnp-100-muscle-and-34-selected.html.
  7. For a unconventional but science-based answer, check my blog, from the oldest post to the newest - the science will surprise you.
  8. Carbohydrates are the key to maximizing protein efficiency (the % of dietary protein deposited into storage). Low-carb diets means pathetic insulin levels, which means very low % of protein will be pushed into storage; most will simply be oxidize or pissed away or stored as fat instead. This is why megadoses of protein are counterproductive and much less effective for body recomposition versus an MNP diet. Protein will do little to help you without a big burst of insulin (preferably from starches not simple sugars). Tons of supporting evidence in my blog, and especially see the section "Efficient Protein Utilization: The Secret Weapon Of MNP" in this post: http://veganmaster.blogspot.com/2008/07/elevating-insulin-and-minimizing-fat.htmlhttp://veganmaster.blogspot.com/2008/07/elevating-insulin-and-minimizing-fat.html Let the science guide you.
  9. I think you may find my blog interesting, the science I talk about and cite will help you learn the basics and get better results.
  10. Actually the general lack of quality info on body recomposition is partly why I started my blog. I did the research myself and found that basically no one is putting the evidence together to form the big picture on body recomposition. The truth about human metabolism is quite unknown, and I may write a book eventually, because the science is so ignored (thus I cite and discuss many dozens of excellent studies). The evidence is robust showing that the healthiest human diet (very low fat, high starch vegan diet) is also the best for body recomposition, as I detail in my blog. By implementing the 4 rules of MNP and following thoughtful and serious exercise habits, anyone can reach their body recomposition goals faster. Immerse yourself in the scientific studies of metabolism (particularly calorimetry studies) and you will soon understand metabolism better than than 99% of "nutritionists" and "trainers," who are usually steeped in mainsteam misinformation. Here's the 4 rules of MNP and 34 studies (including direct links to 17 .pdfs) to start you on the path: http://veganmaster.blogspot.com/2008/08/mnp-100-muscle-and-34-selected.html
  11. Thanks for the link, according to that I'm at 16.3% body fat still after cutting from 172 to 154 (my first serious cut). If that's anywhere near accurate, it looks like I'm shooting for about 10% BF before I begin gaining.
  12. My new post deals with extensively with essential fatty acids and a couple more things (see the section "Essential Fats: Blown Way Out Of Proportion"): http://veganmaster.blogspot.com/2008/08/muscle-gain-during-energy-deficits-good.html I find stevia yucky! If you are eating a low-fat, starch-based vegan diet a little splenda or lots of non-organic food isn't going to bother you at all, you have to keep things in perspective. Certainly, I'd rather not eat it, but I start crawling up the walls because without it, because basically I am a sugar holic who eats almost no simple sugars (even adding a little salsa to my fat-free refried beans is a sugar "treat" - same with unsweetened soymilk, lol). Chrisjs, I'm still cutting but my new favorite is fat-free crackers dipped in fat-free refried beans! Or last night we had baked potato slices dipped in a mixture of flour, water, salt and all purpose seasoning (sprayed with just a touch of oil) plus boca burgers on a no-oil added bread I'm tracking my diet carefully now, fasting until 3p.m. and then eating under 1500kcal in the evening. I'm down to 154 now, and will reach my goal in a couple weeks (around 147 probably). Then I'll finally get to begin MNP!! I can't wait. This cut has taken awhile as it's my first (I started at 172). I've lost about 5 lbs just in the last 8 days. I'll be glad when my beginning pics are up and I can focus on implementing MNP 100% Muscle! For me I'm gonna load up on crackers, rice, flour, legumes, bean thread noodles + "teriyaki" soy sauce (a little splenda added). I've been tracking macros during the last week or so of this cut and I have been a little lax consuming 16% FAT 67% CHO 18% PRO. The reason is I've been indulging my sweet tooth by eating unsweetend soy milk with rice puffs/corn puffs/wheat puffs and splenda. But I'm getting excited now that my muscles are showing. And when I am ready to pack on the muscle I'll be super strict, shooting for 5-7% kcal from FAT. I'm working on more posts, about postabsorptive metabolism/fasting and exercise. I'll be creating a much more detailed plan eventually, as I know I can estimate some specific numbers fairly accurately, as the studies give some good data. Oh, I got my first asshole comment on my blog, lol! I had allowed anonymous postiing, but this person obviously didn't read a thing I had written, and just felt like wailing in my general direction "I don't see huge pictures of you, therefore all your fancy words and scientific studies must be wrong!" If they had read my blog they would have noticed where I mentioned that I'm just beginning my journey. The difference is, my pathway is lighted with science instead of popular misconception. Anyone with that attitutde is going to have a hell of a time telling the difference between popular dogma and objective reality. I got a google alert showing someone had posted my blog on a low-carb forum, so they probably didn't read anything and just posted their knee-jerk response. So I don't allow anonymous posting anymore, lol, just to calm my male hormones, hehe. Damn evolutionary psychology - our brains don't realize that you can't get hurt over the net, all they know is someone is spewing anger in our direction and that we'd better pay attention to it cuz there could be a fight! I'm not worried, once I'm satisfied with my body fat level, I'm going begin growing muscle. But even if I was already huge, that shouldn't matter, the whole point of my blog is to encourage people to go with the evidence without regard for popular opinion or anecdote. That's why I link directly to full scientific studies that usually use the gold standard method of determining oxidation rates (calorimetry).
  13. Thanks Lean and Green & everyone, I really appreciate it. This site encouraged me to create my blog, and I already have 7 long posts and with my next one I'll top 50 scientific references (no correlational studies allowed!!!). My next post is all about postabsorptive metabolism (oxidation rates, fasting, exercise, etc). The cool thing is that by getting obsessed with exercise and recomposition studies in the last couple years, I've learned exactly how metabolism works. Writing my blog has been great for myself, I think it will lead to a book eventually. The truth is so empowering, if I can share some of the evidence and help someone meet their muscle or health goals faster, right on! Vegan bodybuilding is all about being healthy not just on the outside like most bodybuilders, but also on the inside .
  14. If you eat whole plant foods in amounts large enough to satisfy hunger, you will meet nutritional needs and in fact be healthier than nearly all americans. Don't believe the propaganda, check out my first blog post. We are biological herbivores, and the evidence is clear that you don't have to worry about combining foods or eating pills to meet nutritional needs. http://veganmaster.blogspot.com/2008/07/you-are-biological-herbivore.html Pills and supplements can do very little for health, by defiinition. Whole plant foods are what create vibrant health for the herbivorous human primate. Gorillas and chimps don't take supplements to meet their needs, they instead eat whole plant foods regularly, which prevents all the "modern" diseases humans have due to their biologically inappropriate diet.
  15. Studies comparing plant and animal protein very clearly show a net calcium loss from bones with animal proteins, because they are more acidic than plant proteins. Always look at the direct intervention studies, not the correlational BS that is used to prop up the status quo. Osteoporosis (and all chronic disease) is directly caused by eating biologically inappropriate food. See my first blog post for an overview and links.
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