Tag Archives: twinkie diet

Twinkie Diet

I know I am a week late on this one but I have been receiving emails since my last post where I included a link to the story of the Kansas State professor who went on the Twinkie diet and lost 27 pounds.  You can read the CNN article here but I just wanted to share a few of my opinions on the consumption of this male bodypart-like non-food product.

A breakdown of the actual diet that Mark Haub went on to drop 27lbs in 2 months consisted solely of sugary vending machine delicacies such as Ding Dongs, Snowballs, and Twinkies.  In order to maintain some basis of health, he also consumed a daily protein shake, multi-vitamin and miniscule serving of canned vegetables.  He cut back from his usual consumption of 2,600 calories per day to sub 1,600 calories per day.

What does not surprise me is that fact that he lost weight.  It has already been proven that VLCD or very low calorie diets causes weightloss in most people.  I say most because in almost every study there is always an exception to the rule.  Just look at the curious case of Benjamin Button.

What did surprise me was the fact that he improved such biomarkers of good health such as a decrease in LDL and an increase in HDL cholesterol (LDL think “lousy” and HDL think “happy”…that is how I remember it), as well as a decrease in blood lipids.  What this proves is that by decreasing your overall body fat, you will decrease your susceptibility to these health risks.

The problem with this study that it is not actually a study at all since the results come from one man.  What people shouldn’t go out believing is that this diet is healthy or will give them the same results as the professor.  The fact is that you only get a small window (2 months) into what this diet will actually do to your body.

What I am more interested in when it comes to health and fitness is longevity.  What do you think would happen to the professor if he stayed on this diet for 6 months?  What about for 6 years?  I think it’s safe to say that the consumption of all of those non-food products would eventually take their toll on your body and new problems other than being overweight will arise.  Think: “If you run through a dynamite factory with a lit match and manage to make it out the other side, that doesn’t mean your not an idiot”.

Here are the basics of calorie consumption and weight loss:

  1. Depending on your exercise habits, multiply your bodyweight by 10 to 13 to get your daily calorie intake.
  2. Follow rule 1 every day…not most days (when someone tells me this I assume they mean never).
  3. Don’t eat too little calories.  This will slow down your metabolism.
  4. Every 10 days have a “cheat” or refead day.  Don’t gorge on junk food, but do eat something you like and consume a few exta calories.
  5. Try to eat 4-6 “meals” or “feedings”.  Taper your meals as well eating a slightly larger breakfast and smaller dinner.

For example, say you currently weigh 14o pounds and exercise 3-4 times per week.  You would multiply 140 by 12 which would give you a consumption of 1680 calories.  If you try to eat 6 meals a day, divide your calories by 6 which would give you approximately 280 calories per meal.  To put this in perspective, that would be one package of snack cakes or one bottle of soda.

Sidenote: The average American consumes 680 calories per meal.  We also on average consume between 2,000 and 4,000 calories per day.

I am not going to get into what you eat because you should know the difference between healthy food and lets say a Twinkie.  All I can say is put actual “food” in your body.  If you do not know what that is then pick up Food Rules by Michael Polan to learn how to distinguish between a potato and a potato chip.

If anything, I tell my clients to begin with the caloric formula and then gradually improve the quality of the food that they eat.  It is extremely hard for the average 40-50 year old who is trying to make a change to completely eliminate the foods that they have been eating for decades.  It is more feasible to get them to alter their calorie consumption by giving them this simple formula.


Weekend Reading: Incredible Edible Eggs, Beautiful Badasses 2 and Core Interviews

I know I wrote about this months ago but I finally had time the other day to sit down and watch Avatar.  Yes, I am slightly behind the curve on this one as I find it hard to devote 3 hours to blue humanoid crusades on planet preservation but holy crap.  My only regret was not going to see it in IMAX 3D.  Harry Potter 17 is next….haha just kidding (not really).

It has been a while since I have shared some of the great things I find on the interwesz so here are a few things to read over the weekend that is more exciting than me and the girlfriend watching Chocolat on HBO.  Johnny Depp is truly amazing.

The first order of business is to praise the food of the gods: eggs.  I am not sure of how many I have eaten in my lifetime but a few dozen a week for the past 10 years should paint a good picture.  Slowly but surely I have adopted the belief that the yolks are perfectly healthy and will not make me a fat ass.  Honestly, I spent 9 out of the past 10 years separating the white from the yolk and trashing the most nutritious part (the unborn chicken baby).  Here are Tony Gentilcore’s views on whats worse: eggs or men’s figure skating? Here is another egg article by Mike Geary on whether whole eggs or egg whites are better for you.  

My current favorite egg creation is a scramble with mushrooms, spinach, rosemary, herbed goat cheese and 4 whole eggs.  This has been my breakfast for 1 week and running…along with a potato, oj and milk.  Want to gain muscle?  Eat.

Want to lose muscle?  Go on the Twinkie Diet.  Yes, this is a real diet that helped a nutrition professor lose 27 pounds.  Good research, shitty diet.  Here is the original and here is Mike Nelson’s response.

While we are on the subject, Cassandra Forsythe wrote a great post on the great saturated fat debate.  The American Dietetic Association held their 93rd annual meeting in Boston last weekend and Cassandra helps break down some of their talks.  Check it out.

Yes, with my busy schedule I still have time to cook breakfast every day.  Early to bed and early to rise and all that jazz.  I am awake and doing work when most tigers are dreaming of mauling zebras and Halle Berry in her catwoman suit.  The truth is that most people come up with thousands of excuses for not getting shit done and one of the more popular excuses is that they don’t have enough time.  Rog Law broke it down in an epic post in the No-Excuses Guide to Getting Things Done.  My first client is typically around 6a.m. and I still wake up about an hour before I even have to leave in order to let my brain adjust to the new day by listening to a seminar or the Fitcast followed by reading on the train on my way to Fitcorp.  What do you do before 6a.m.?  Chad Howse also wrote a recent post on how to get your schedule in order, great stuff.

Next I want to redirect your attention to some videos ofBeautiful Badasses.  This series has become popular on Nia Shanks’ site, the BodyFat Solution.  It shows beautiful women lifting heavy things and just being totally badass.  Kudos to Nia for inspiring women across the world to drop their preconceived notion that women who lift heavy things will become bulky and mannish.  In reality, this is f*$&ing hot.  What do you do women to do be a beautiful badass?

Here is a post of Jason Ferrugia’s beautiful badass breaking her old pullups pr by 4 reps at a grand total of 17.  That is a truly amazing feat for any woman so props to Jen.  Here is how she did it.

Last night, my beautiful badass ditched the light weights and entered the wonderful world of deadlifting and barbell front squats.  After working with her for the past month on prep work to get her ready to handle some weight.  At 110lbs, she nailed the barbell front squat and banged out a couple sets of deadlifts with 95lbs.  On a scale from 1 to 10 on hotness that ranks up there with Patrick Swayze and Demi Moore a clay pot.

For your viewing pleasure:

The last thing I want to share with you is a series of core interviews on anything and everything that will help you build the core that have always dreamed of.  My friend Mark Young is giving away these priceless interviews on his site for free.  I am appalled daily at the stuff that I see people continuing to do in the gym to train their mid sections hoping that someday a 6-pack will magically appear.  Download this series of interviews here if you are seriously looking to improve your core knowledge and training.  Enjoy!

Have a great weekend and if you don’t check back in have a wonderful Thanksgiving.


%d bloggers like this: