There are a seemingly infinite amount of diet plans, types, styles and strategies.
I've cut down to sub 10% body fat with so many types of diets over my 7 years of bodybuilding that I have lost track.
I know that it can be extremely overwhelming to figure out what diet to stick to.
And even if you DO stick with the diet, sometimes it just doesn't work – not all diets work for all people all of the time.
The key is trying a few diets out and then assessing how your body reacts to each one.
That takes a long time though, so lucky for you we've done the hard work for you. Presenting:
The most universally applicable diet that will help EVERY SINGLE PERSON who uses it get ripped.
(if they follow it correctly)
Remember, not every diet works for every person who ever lived. But this diet we'll tell you about comes very close….
Note: This won’t be the ideal diet for a small minority of individuals, (namely those who are advanced bodybuilders and have a high quantity of muscle mass packed on their frame).
This diet is geared towards people who simply want to get to 10% body fat or lower. And for that purpose, it works really well.
Which diet am I talking about?
The Zero Carbohydrate Diet
The zero carb diet is very simple but it is pretty much GUARANTEED to drop a large amount of fat off you at a quick pace.
The zero carbohydrate diet burns fat in two ways:
- you aren’t eating any carbs
- you'll be in a calorie deficit
When your body is deprived of carbohydrates for its’ energy source and you are in a calorie deficit your body will resort to stored energy (stored fat, glycogen, and muscle protein) for its source of fuel.
When it realizes there are no stored carbs it can utilize, the next alternative it will burn up are your muscle protein and most importantly your STORED FAT.
In addition, when you ingest carbohydrates your body responds accordingly to the increase in blood sugar by increasing your insulin levels.
While insulin is anabolic and helps shuttle nutrients to the muscle for recovery, it is THE LAST thing you want to have spiking while you are cutting.
Every time your insulin spikes significantly, you are putting yourself in a temporary state where it is literally near impossible to burn fat.
When you do this several times per day with high glycemic foods that are carbohydrate dense, you are making the fat loss process 10x more difficult for yourself.
The no-carb diet mitigates the entire insulin response issue, as your glucose levels will remain near homeostasis for your entire diet if you don’t take in any carbs. By keeping glucose levels at baseline, you avoid spiking insulin, which in turn will avoid the inhibition of fat loss.
So, at this point you’re probably thinking “this sounds great and all, but I don’t want my body tapping into stored muscle protein for its energy source, because that means muscle loss!”
Yes, you couldn’t be more right, however, this is why the diet I will outline includes a higher than normal protein intake.
By keeping your protein intake high, you will prevent your body from tapping into stored muscle protein for energy, which is what leads to muscular atrophy and muscle loss during a cutting phase.
Calculating your caloric and protein needs on a zero carb cutting diet
#1 Calculate your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR)
Your BMR is how many calories your body will expend each day without factoring in activity level.
The number you want to use as your target for your maintenance calories is the “Total Daily Energy Expenditure” number (which factors in your activity level each week).
Once you have calculated your BMR, you will want to subtract 500 calories from this total and use this as your starting point for your daily calorie goal for your cutting diet.
How to calculate your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR)
Use this calculator to do calculate your BMR: http://www.1percentedge.com/ifcalc/
Choose the Harris-Benedict Formula for the BMR section (I find this one the most accurate) and then plug in all the corresponding values for your age, weight, activity level, etc.
After doing this you should have a number under your “Total Daily Energy Expenditure” section showing you exactly how many calories your body requires each day to stay the same weight.
This is your maintenance level of calories. Chop 500 calories off of this number to start your cutting diet.
TIP: The activity section is very sensitive in regards to the outcome of your results; so don’t overstate how much activity you actually do. Going to the gym and lifting weights 5x per week IS NOT “Very Active” believe it or not. Carefully read the descriptions for each level of activity and pick the one that fits you accurately.
Once you have calculated your Maintenance level of calories and subtracted 500 from it, you are ready to construct your macro allotments.
Since you will not be having any carbs, we can forget about including them. The only carbs you will be allowed in this diet are leafy greens, as they only have trace carbs.
#2 Calculate your protein needs
Once you have your calorie goal, take your body weight (in pounds) and multiply that by 1.5
That number will be the number of grams protein you will be eating each day. This will off-set the majority of the muscle tissue breakdown that would be occurring otherwise in a calorie deficit.
Example: If you weight 200 lbs you would eat 300 grams of protein per day.
We get that number by taking your body weight in lbs and multiplying it by 1.5.
In this example, it's 200 multiplied by 1.5 which equals 300.
200 x 1.5 = 300
The rest of your calories will be allocated to fats.
To get your daily fat intake requirements you simply find your your daily calorie and protein requirements and use your remaining calories (after protein calories) as fat.
Example: Let's say your total daily expenditure calories are 2856. To get your daily calorie requirements you subtract 500 calories from that total.
2856 calories – 500 calories = 2386 calories
So now you have 2386 daily calories (in this example). Remember, we calculated your protein needs at 300 grams per day which is 1200 protein calories per day.
There are 4 calories in each gram of protein, so 300 grams of protein is equal to 1200 calories.
Your remaining calories will be fat calories.
If we have 2386 daily calories in total, and we have 1200 protein calories, that leaves us about 1180 calories for fat.
There are 9 calories in each gram of fat.
If we have 1186 fat calories (as in this example), we can allocate them all to fats – which is approximately 130 grams of fat.
Example: If you have 2386 daily calories, 1200 of those calories will be protein calories. That leaves you with 1186 calories for fat. Since fat has 9 calories per gram, we can take 1186 (calories) and divide it by 9. That gives us a total of 130 grams of fat.
So in this example diet you have: 2386 daily calories. 1200 calories should be protein sources and 1186 calories should be fat sources.
Now that you know your calorie and protein requirements, we can construct the diet.
The Official Red Supplements Zero Carb Diet (for insane fat loss):
Upon waking up:
- Drink plenty of water
- Take 1-2 capsules of RED-BURNER on an empty stomach
- Do your fasted cardio
Zero carb meal #1:
- 5 Omega-3 eggs (each egg is 70 calories, 6 grams protein, 5 grams fat)
- ½ cup low fat mozzarella cheese (each ½ cup is 140 calories, 16 grams protein, 9 grams fat)
Zero carb meal #2:
- 8 ounces boneless skinless chicken breast (each ounce is 30 calories, 7 grams protein, 0.6 grams fat)
- ½ cup low fat mozzarella cheese
- 1 serving of green vegetables (trace calories don’t count if you are just having plain lettuce or other leafy greens WITH NOTHING on it)
Zero carb meal #3:
- 2 cups extra lean ground turkey (each half cup is 140 calories, 20 grams protein, 1.5 grams fat)
- ½ cup low fat mozzarella cheese
- 1 serving of green vegetables
Zero carb meal #4:
- 5 Omega-3 eggs
- ½ cup low fat mozzarella cheese
Zero carb meal #5:
- 2 scoops carbless whey isolate (105 calories per scoop, 25 grams protein, 0.5 grams fat)
- 2 cups unsweetened almond milk (30 calories per cup, 1 gram protein, 2.5 grams fat)
- 2 scoops Barleans Chocolate Silk Greens Formula (25 calories per scoop, 1 gram protein, 0 grams fat)
EXACT total calories and macros:
- Calories: 2380
- Protein: 314 grams
- Carbs: 0 grams (except trace carbs)
- Fat: 103 grams
Zero Carb Diet Tips and Tricks
Always use the nutrition labels of the foods you are eating to make exact calculations, as they will likely differ slightly from your original rough estimates.
As long as your protein is AT LEAST 1.5x bodyweight and your calorie goal is EXACT (or very close to exact), that is what matters for fat loss and muscle retention.
If there is another fat source you would like to use instead of low fat mozzarella, or you want to use another protein source for example, you can swap them for what is in the diet above, just adjust your diet accordingly.
You simply need to make sure you are hitting your calorie goal each day, as well as your protein minimum intake (1.5x grams per pound body weight).
For example, if you wanted to swap omega-3 eggs and the cheese one meal for some turkey bacon (or any food that has 0 carbs and 0 sugar) go for it, just make sure you are still within your macro goals for the day and don’t exceed the calorie intake you are allowed.
If you want to add sugar free condiments to your meals like hot sauce or mustard, or add spices and herbs to your meals, you can – but you just need to ensure you are not ingesting ANYTHING with carbs in it.
The keys to this diet are the high protein content, taking in no carbs, and the calorie deficit. Keep that in mind when you are constructing your specific zero carbohydrate diet.
You don’t need to choose the exact same foods I did, this is just a guideline to follow regarding allocating macros and hitting a calorie target each day.
Once your diet is all setup and you can start to watch the fat burn off.
What about training and cardio on the low carb diet?
You should be hitting the gym at least 4x per week. Each body part should be trained adequately at least once per week (chest, shoulders, back, shoulders, traps, abs, legs, calves, biceps, triceps, forearms).
For weight loss, the most important thing you must consider is your overall energy expenditure each day in relation to your energy intake (caloric intake). Keep this in mind when deciding how much cardio to do. It's all calories in (eaten) vs. calories out (expended)
The best time to do your cardio is first thing in the morning upon waking on an empty stomach.
First thing in the morning is when your glycogen stores will be the most depleted.
Since you have not taken in any energy yet for the day (you haven’t eaten yet and have been essentially fasting in your sleep), your body will tap into stored fat to provide the energy it needs to get through the cardio session.
Tap into stored fat to provide energy? What does that mean?
It means you will be burning FAT.
How much cardio should you do to burn fat?
I suggest starting with 3 steady state fasted cardio sessions per week for 30 minutes each session (keep your heart rate around 140 beats per minute the entire session).
Which cardio machine should you use on the no carb diet?
How you do the cardio is up to you, whether it is on the elliptical, treadmill, bike, just make sure you do it.
What should you do when your weight loss plateaus?
When your weight loss plateaus, then you can either:
- add another cardio session to your weekly routine, or
- increase the length of your current cardio sessions (cardio burns calories), or
- decrease your caloric intake by another 100-200 calories.
These will help break weight loss plateaus by increasing the disparity between your daily caloric intake and your total daily energy expenditure.
Through the continuous process of slowly adding in more cardio and slowly reducing your daily caloric intake each time you plateau, you can continue to get leaner and leaner until you’re ripped to shreds.
How about supplements on a low carb diet?
The #1 supplement to use on the no carb cutting diet:
Why use Red Burner on a cutting diet?
Because Red-Burner is the best natural fat burner on the market.
How does Red-Burner work to burn fat?
Red-Burner works by increasing the amount of energy your body is capable of expending on a daily basis.
By increasing your calorie expenditure and furthering the disparity between your intake and your energy expenditure each day, Red-Burner expedites fat oxidization a HUGE amount.
Red-Burner also helps inhibit your appetite, which makes eating at a calorie deficit much more bearable without all the brutal cravings plaguing your mind.
It is easily the most versatile fat burner on the market today, as it provides such a high level of fat-burning with such a sustained and clean level of focused energy that WILL NOT cause a brutal energy crash afterwards.
That's all folks! We hope you enjoyed the low carb diet plan.
If you have any questions regarding our products (or diet and training in general) leave a comment below and I will get back with you!
-Derek @ RED