Q: I am trying to cut down on my body fat. I have tried Atkins and Keto diets. I even did some fasting, and they make me feel a little crazy. Is this normal? What diet would you recommend and why? I don’t even care if I lose a little muscle mass, I just don’t want to lose any strength.
– M. Volkman
My Answer: Well I have written about how ketogenic diets can make you a little crazy and a little on edge. It depends on the person. Fasting can make you loopy too, which is one reason why religions use it to make its members psychologically malleable.
If you find that you just can’t take ketogenic diets or fasting, then you’re going to have to rely on lowering your calories instead of restricting certain macronutrients or foods.
Go to Fitday.com and open up a free account. Start logging in your food intake and note the calories. Strive to lower the calories from day to day. Start cutting down portions. No servings of anything larger than a fistful, with the exception of vegetables. Eventually your stomach will shrink, and you will be satiated with smaller portions.
If you decrease in size because of fat loss or weight loss, then you will invariably lose some strength. This is unavoidable. But if you want to maintain some overall strength while on a calorie restricted diet, then follow an abbreviated program with just the power lifts: squat, deadlifts, bench press. Add standing military presses and pullups to round it out. Focus on low reps (4-6) which is a true indicator of strength and not on high reps (8+) which indicates strength endurance.