Protein fasting: weight loss and muscle gain

Fasting is an effective weight loss method that has been validated by science. However, this weight loss is often accompanied by muscle catabolism (muscle wasting) which is often not desired, athletes such as powerlifters, bodybuilders or fitness models are not very fond of fasting because this diet does not respond to the anabolic demand of their respective disciplines. But there is a variation called “protein fasting”, offering the benefits of fasting while preventing muscle catabolism, this diet was developed by Harvard University professor Geroge Blackburn over the years 70.

The principle is to drastically limit the daily caloric intake, where the person is limited to around 600-800 calories at most, the protein intakes are mainly obtained thanks to animal and vegetable protein sources. Furthermore, low-calorie vegetables are the other major part of the diet.

To survive the lack of calories, the body relies on the intensive formation of ketone bodies, which provide energy, it is the result of the transformation of body fat following the increased lack of energy resources. This lack begins on the first day of the diet and sees a phase of adaptation to caloric restriction of 2 to 3 days, in fact, the body generally draws its energy from food calories, their restriction causes the liver to start using body fat cells as the main energy resources.

The benefits are:

  • rapid weight loss
  • Preservation or even increase of fatty muscle mass with protein intake
  • Feeling of satiety

Be careful, if you balance your nutritional intake badly, there is a risk of intestinal laziness or some undesirable effects such as small headaches, and of course, inevitably, the feeling of loss of food freedom (no more restaurants, and sandwiches… ).


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