Can you gain weight on a low-carb diet?

This is my first post in a while and a few things have happened. I have lost a bit of motivation for training and consequently have lost some weight (until recently). I place the blame on stress here. I have changed jobs and also recently moved houses from a large city to a much smaller regional town. The stress levels have gone down and I got some motivation back.

Those who follow my blog, would know that I am not too fond of carbs. It is my belief that blood glucose is the culprit behind most of the afflictions our society faces today. I believed in managing it to low levels and that it would be beneficial to health. I would, however, struggle with trying to put any weight on as it was always easier for me to lose than gain. I know, I know, many people would gladly swap with me, but it was bugging me a bit. For many years I maintained healthy BMI and looked very trim no matter how much I ate. However, I was secretly aspiring to have some more mass. Not fat, but muscle – like I used to be in my early twenties. Weight training would be very discouraging as every time I hit the gym for a few months I had nothing to show for it. Consequently, it was very sporadic – few months in the gym followed by a year or two of staying away. Until now. I have just put on about 7kg in the last 3 months. Little bit of fat but mostly muscle. And all this with a hafl-assed effort in the gym!

So, the question is: How did this happen? I cut all carbs out of my diet. Well, mostly, as it is sometimes not feasible in social situations. Thanks to Darko Velcek’s blog, I took the plunge. He proposes that while there is still a small supply of glucose from carbs, cells rely on it and will wait for more glucose rather than switch to ketones for energy. This is to do with the fact that glucose is such an explosive fuel that cells shut down some of their mitocondria and will not re-enable them until there is no supply of glucose for some time. This should occur after only a few days. So, if carbs are eliminated from a diet they need to be replaced with fat to maintain the same level of calories as before.

This is exactly what I did. More butter, cheese, coconut oil etc in my diet and less carbs. I was surprised how quickly I bulked up, especially in the shoulders. In the past, I would have worked hard for over an hour each day in the gym but these days I mostly work out with the few kettle bells I have at home and a low hanging branch for chin-ups. I still keep doing sprints (interval training) up my favorite hill. Apparently, there is some evidence that suggests ketones are good for muscles.

My experience, though, seems contrary to what is described in Recovery section of this article as I have quickly gained muscle mass. As far as performance goes, I have noticed that initially I was getting tired somewhat quicker than usual, which was noticeable for a few weeks. My water intake is also in line with the advice in the Warning section so I have not experienced any issues with thicker urine.

Furthermore, this articleย says that you cannot gain muscle on ketogenic diet. Well then, maybe my diet cannot be called ketogenic – just low in carbs… But apparently, I am not the only one who is getting the results without carbs. Here’s another good guideย for those who want to try keto diet.

Oh, one other thing I have to mention, and it is an unexpected bonus. I have had a misfortune of being lactose intolerant for most of my adult life but have noticed over the past few years that with the reduction of wheat products, my tolerance for lactose has increased. Now that I don’t eat any bread or pasta, I can safely consume a 200g block of cheese without the fear of no toilet being nearby ๐Ÿ™‚

Not sure why this is so, but I suspect that I may be gluten sensitive to some degree which interfered with absorption of other nutrients. I was tested for Celiac disease in the past and it came back negative, so I did continue to enjoy consuming bread. From purely taste aspect, this was a toss-up for me as I love both bread and cheese. However, looking at it in terms of health benefits, there is no contest, but I will miss the taste of nice fresh sour dough bread, though…

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I’m speechless…

Unpublished nutritional data gathered between 1968 and 1973…

This is preposterous! Absolute outrage! Or, was it a conspiracy? 22% higher risk of death makes a big difference – just imagine how many deaths since this period could have been avoided? This is criminal…

I am asking why was the data withheld from public? Who is responsible for this? Who profited from this? (the answer to this one is a no-brainer)

Although this article only mentions studies done on butter versus corn oil, this really is about saturated fat versus polyunsaturated.

Can anyone tell me what else has been hidden from the public?


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Vitamins and Supplements – the ultimate conspiracy theory

Well, yes, it is only my theory, and a fairly convoluted one at that. But hear me out – it ticks all the boxes from a marketing perspective.

What if the complimentary medicine products are manufactured by the same pharmaceutical companies that make allopathic medicine drugs? Why would they do this? Isn’t it against what all the evidence based medicine stands for?

Yes, it is, and that is the whole point if you are trying to maximise the profits. Let me explain.

Let’s say that a large percentage of the population believes that modern medicines are the only way to get better if you’re sick. But there is always a small percentage of people that will have other beliefs.

So how do you convince that small part of population to your side? You don’t – you give them what they think they want. You offer them another product that stands against the mainstream one. You also stir up enough controversy in the media to make this minority even more convinced that they are correct. By not letting the industry’s foot soldiers (doctors) in on the secret, they will actually do this part for you and denounce supplements at any opportunity. The minority will think that the mainstream industry is conspiring against people by trying to deny them the healing power of vitamins and supplements.

Have you noticed how much advertising pops up these days for some “weird fruit/spice/extract that destroys cancer/diabetes/melts fat” etc? They all have a common theme that puts pressure on consumers to buy now before authorities shut them down. One example is shown here.

So, in an nutshell, you have just turned all of the population into your clients. But wait, there’s more! There are always people that will double-dip thinking that they will gain extra benefits by taking both at the same time. And now you are getting more than 100% of possible profits as the sum of the products is more than the whole – bloody brilliant marketing!

By the way, nutritional supplements industry is shaping up as one of the fastest growing industries and projected to hit $60 bil globally by 2021.

On that note, I think I will start applying for Marketing Strategist positions with some large companies ๐Ÿ™‚

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โ€‹ Have you ever wondered?


You hear about the importance of Omega-3 fatty acids just about everywhere. Every product that contains them has got it blasted onto the packaging with such force that it is impossible to ignore it. You’d be excused to think that it is a miracle supplement that will cure everything from blindness, cancer, obesity to low intelligence. Of course, we need it to live healthily and prevent many of these conditions, but it will probably not magically annihilate cancer or turn you into a genius overnight.

We also need Omega-6 fatty acids in our diets. They are equally important. So why is everyone promoting Omega-3s and not 6s? Most of the diet-related information says that we need to keep them in a ratio of 1 : 1. Analyses of our modern diet, however, show that this ratio can be skewed up to 200 : 1 in favour of Omega-6. So why is this a problem? And, is it a problem in the first place? I have been wondering about this for some time.

Current scientific thought on this is a bit inconclusive. On one hand, it says that the ratio does not matter. But on the other, there seems to be contradictory statement when looking at the Omega-6 page. Omega-6s are pro-inflammatory, while Omega-3s lower inflammation. Inflammation is necessary for healing wounds and fighting off infections, for example. But once the job is done, it does not need to continue. Eating more foods that promote inflammation may cause it to become chronic. As inflammation has been linked with some nasty diseases like cancer, heart disease, Alzheimer’s and metabolic disease, you would want to prevent it from becoming chronic. Therefore, it makes sense to keep the ratio as close as possible to 1 : 1, as such a diet may help the body to turn inflammation on when needed, and also to have the means to turn it off once done.

In my opinion, it’s better to err on the side of caution, and actually pay attention to the ratio. If it does not matter, then no harm done whether it’s 1 : 1 or 200:1. If it does, then it’s worth the hassle to keep as close to 1 : 1 as possible.

Where can you find Omega-3 fatty acids? Unfortunately, our bodies do not make them and we have to provide them from the diet. Some best known and most abundant sources of Omega-3s are fish and krill oils as well as flax seed oil. Many other foods, like meat and eggs, also contain them but in smaller quantities. Omega-6s seem to be more abundant in our diet as most of the vegetable oils currently in use contain them, as well as poultry, eggs, wheat, cereals and nuts.

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Biggest con of the last century…

… and we are still paying for it.

Here’s a very interesting article about how it happened:

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Rainbow Doritos?

No, thank you… Waiting for rainbow Pringles ๐Ÿ™‚


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I was watching a science program on TV called “Truth about fat“. It basically showed that fat people have a deficient hormone which tells the brain when they are full. At least that’s how it was for the study sample. It was all very fascinating, but…

Programs such as this are making you forget about your own responsibility. It allows you the luxury of having an excuse for being overweight (or any other ailment you may got yourself into).

Ok, I agree, we’re all different. So we have a different genetic make-up, different bodies, different lifestyles, different attitutes and beliefs. However, we all have a responsibility to our bodies. We all need our bodies to be “well-oiled and maintained machines” to last the whole life through. And this comes down to the individual resposibility. You can’t just say “I have a fat gene” and let it go. You need to work out what works for you and what doesn’t.

If you’ll listen to all this science, although interesting, you will get bogged down in excuses and will stop trying.

P.S. The program also mentioned that just because you have a gene, it does not necessarily have to be activated. Further studies are currently going on in the gene activation field.

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