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I have seen a lot of information on the internet about diets for bodybuilding. The information seems to change depending on the writer of the article. Everyone seems to have their own suggestions on how many carbs/protein/fat one should take based on their body weight when pursuing muscle gains. I am beginning to get confused...

A lot of the diets suggest for example, protein percentages related to your bodyweight that seem excessive to me. I was told by my physician that protein intake for someone highly active should be your bodyweight in kilograms multiplied by 1.5 at a high end and yet I see programs suggesting 2g per pound. Wouldn't this over time damage your kidneys?

How can one scientifically create a meal plan that is optimized for gaining muscle and mass with so much conflicting information out there? Also, how can this be done safely (without putting an excessive amount of stress on your body)?

I am 165lbs, 6'0 and in reasonable physical condition. I would like to put on 10 lbs of muscle for example.

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2 Answers

up vote 1 down vote accepted

There are generally two accepted way of doing this.

Cyclic ketogenic diet or a "standard" 40/40/20 diet. The 40/40/20 diet have been used by bodybuilders for 50+ years so it is really not anything new and does have a proven track record. It simply works! You will find many ways of doing this online and it will all be based on you knowing your body fat percentage and TDEE, again, many calculators online to help you here.

I opted for a Cyclic Ketogenic Diet myself which have been working extremely well. The best explanation for this diet is here Cyclical Ketogenic Diet: The Best Ever Bodybuilding Diet?. Mark also runs his own website with some excellent programs.

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You should checkout intermittent fasting, periods of fasting and feasting. The idea is to reduce your caloric intake. See Eat stop Eat for the research and benefits of fasting. But it is much easier that counting calories. For example, 3 days out of the week don't eat while you are at work. Fasting has also been shown to increase growth hormone.

Here are some resources:

  • Eat stop eat - gives a good description of benefits of intermitient fasting
  • Lean Gains - Free information about intermitient fasting
  • Warrior diet- Another schedule for fasting, basically fasting all day and eating one big meal in the evening.
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-1 I really don't see how intermittent fasting helps with gaining muscle. –  Baarn Aug 18 '13 at 14:52
    
@Informaficker It's one method of gaining muscle and strength while also keeping body fat low. –  Dave Liepmann Aug 18 '13 at 17:29
    
If you read Eat stop eat, he brings data that fasting raises the level of growth hormone. –  Yisrael Dov Aug 20 '13 at 8:00
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