The Insulin Paradox II ~ Lessons from Body Builders
In The Insulin Paradox, I laid out the following:
THE INSULIN PARADOX
When insulin levels are elevated, the uptake/esterification of fatty acids in fat tissue is enhanced while lipolysis/release of fatty acids stored as triglycerides is suppressed, thus favoring fatty acid accumulation in adipose tissue.
The low insulin state favors partitioning of fuel (mass) to fat tissue stores vs. lean tissue.
And then summarized various observations and studies that support this. Now, this is not to say that the high insulin state necessarily facilitates a low body fat percentage. That's a topic for another day. But, TWICHOO tells us that postprandial insulin release is to be kept low and that insulin spikes lead to calories getting sucked into your fat cells and locked away (envision in head, Lustig going phfffffffffffft) from the rest of your body that's starved of that energy. But is that so? The evidence seems to say no! Because while insulin does directly facilitate glucose transport into the adipocytes and indirectly facilitate uptake of dietary fat, it has far greater impact on lean tissues. Skeletal muscle is the major "sink" for ingested glucose which is subsequently oxidized for energy, converted to glycogen, and quite possibly converted to fatty acids (also oxidized or stored locally in lipid droplets).
But this idea came from my Inbox where a member of Jimmy's forum forwarded the following link , screenshot of opening post below:
Let's leave aside the straw men about what those of us who believe in CICO. We know that CI and CO are not independent variables, that our metabolisms are adaptable, that eating exactly 3500 cals more in a day will not add exactly one pound of fat, and that we ignore any part that hormones play in the partitioning of energy. Indeed hormones (in conjunction with genetics) do impact both energy partitioning between lean and fat, as well as the distribution of that fat. However the latest dig-in-the-heels position of the TWICHOOB hangers-on is that calories don't matter. That somehow a "metabolically deranged" person in 1000 cal/day energy deficit on a high carb diet will not lose weight while they will be able to on a low carb diet irrespective of calorie deficit. This is total nonsense.
But look at what Dave wrote there:
Body Builders routinely inject steroids and even insulin in order to get bigger.
Later he laments that if they just believed in CICO, they would just pig out on pizza to get bigger, and Dave wonders why not. Well Dave, because they'll just get fat if they are gluttonous on relatively low protein, high fat and carb foods. Still, as the recent Bray overfeeding study demonstrated, if they overate on something higher in protein, they would gain lean mass in addition to the fat. But a body builder wants to gain lean while adding as little fat as possible. So let's leave the other roids out of this for now. What else do they inject? Why insulin! Why would they want to do this if insulin favored partitioning to fat tissue? Because it doesn't!
Now, I'm about to link to a website/forum called Steroidology. So you are forewarned, and I also offer the disclaimer here that I do not in any way, shape or form endorse steroid use, etc. and all that jazz. But this post, essentially a tutorial on insulin usage for bulking, demonstrates that this is practiced in the body building community.
Look back through picture archives of bodybuilding and you will be struck by a startling fact. In the last half-decade bodybuilders have been getting much larger much quicker. Certain professionals have added twenty pounds to their contest weight in one season, after having seemingly reached a plateau. The bodybuilding audience loves to hear that this weight gain is due to some secret drug or some newly discovered gene therapy. Elaborate theories are developed to explain these rapid weight gains and the professionals themselves are not helpful; they claim that it's the new X-brand supplement that's doing it and leave it at that.
The truth is that bodybuilders have discovered the most anabolic hormone produced by the body, insulin. Additionally, insulin has the benefit of being not only legal and over the counter in most states, but it is very cheap. A bottle costs less then thirty dollars and there is no need to worry about counterfeits. By correctly using insulin, in conjunction with human growth hormone and anabolic steroids, modern professionals have added pounds of mass onto seemingly stagnant physiques.
Here's the protocol:
Post Injection Meals and Supplements:
Depending on the onset time of the insulin type you are using you have varying lengths of time in which to ingest the post-insulin meal. Generally your post insulin meals should follow these guidelines.
60-80 grams of a good quality protein powder. Whey protein is ideal. This is taken immediately after the injection.
7 grams of simple carbohydrates (not fructose as it does not raise blood sugar quickly enough) per IU of insulin injected. Every 15-20 minutes after the first shot, take a few glucose tablets. This is will increase the amount of glucose available to your body for storage.
The carbs are essential to prevent hypoglycemia and "the total amount of insulin that you will be using daily is roughly 15-45 IUs depending on how many carbohydrates you can eat that day. During dieting periods, the total amount of insulin will be greatly reduced. " Still, 15 x 7 = 105g carb just to cover the insulin. Odd how that's the reverse, eh? During a bulking period, the high end insulin dose would correspond to over 300g carb -- well into the "insidious weight gain" region on Mark Sisson's carb curve. And it looks like it works ... only to drive lean gains.
So ... body builders deliberately consume a caloric excess when they are trying to build muscle. And some inject insulin and ingest considerable carbs while doing this. They eat a lot of protein with those carbs. And the insulin enhances the growth of LEAN mass. So ... eat a lot of protein as part of your caloric excesses in a mixed diet, like the high protein group in the Bray study, put on lean and fat mass. Do the same and inject insulin to create supraphysiological levels (and carbs to prevent hypos), and you gain more lean mass and less fat. I'm not a body builder, but it would seem that if postprandial hyperinsulinemia caused energy partitioning to fat mass, I'd think this is the last thing they'd want to do.