Written by: Anthony Alayon
Best Selling Fitness Author
Web Site: www.HealthReporterDaily.com
I remember it like yesterday. I was 17 years old and competing in my first bodybuilding show in high school. I remember seeing my abs for the first time after only 5 days of dieting. I thought it was the most revolutionary experience in all my existence.
I’d been trying to gets abs by doing countless sit-ups and crunches with little to no success. After just 5 days, I had momentum. I felt like I could gain pounds of muscle every week given my age and stay ripped.
As you might know, it’s really easy to build muscle during your teenage years and even in your 20’s. However, once you reach your 30’s, everything becomes harder. Your metabolism slows down, your testosterone gradually decreases each year and your body doesn’t recover as easy as before.
These are all side effects of getting older.
However, there is one topic I’ve felt compelled to talk about that doesn’t get mentioned in the world of bodybuilding, strength or fitness and that’s being too acidic. You might be wondering what the heck this guy is talking about. Let me explain…
Why Being Too Acidic Makes it Harder to Build Muscle & Lose Fat
I’m sure you’re probably thinking the reason you can’t see gains is because of your genetics, age etc.
The one thing many forget or completely ignore is what happens when your body is too acidic.
You might remember from back in the day during school when you studied about the Acid & Alkaline PH Scale. If not, I’ll give you a quick lesson. The acid and alkaline chart or scale goes from 1 to 14. Neutral is 7 which is right in the middle. Ideally, we’d like to be slightly above 7 and somewhere in the 7.55 range.
The higher the number, the more alkalized your body is and the better. In this state, it becomes easier to build muscle and maintain optimal testosterone levels.
The lower the number, the more acidic your body is and the worse off you are. In this state, it becomes harder to build muscle and your testosterone levels drop. You can always use a 10 second trick to boost your testosterone.
Now, what’s interesting is there are many environmental factors that cause us to become acidic. Here are my top 3 factors that cause us to become too acidic and a solution to each problem.
Factor #1: Eating Acidic Foods
This was something I didn’t realize until I was in my mid to late 20’s. I used to be able to eat practically whatever I wanted and not gain a lot of fat nor get heart burn. However, once I was about 26 years old, certain foods would give me heart burn.
Things like pasta with red sauce or anything greasy like French fries really throw gasoline on the heart burn fire. Once I began to experience heart burn, I realized something had to be done. So I began researching and quickly realized the root cause of the problem.
Now, I could always take pills or over the counter drugs, but that is a short term solution. My body is telling me something. It’s telling me to stop consuming these foods. That’s when I realized how important fruits and vegetables were. I mean fruits and vegetables are on this Earth for a reason!
Now, in the world of bodybuilding, you are often told that too much sugar is bad for you and will make you fat. So even though fruit is healthy, I would avoid fruits or eat them every now and then. Fruits and vegetables provide vital nutrients our bodies need for energy, protecting our immune system and maintaining optimal testosterone levels.
Below is a quick chart of some alkalizing foods and the other chart is acidic foods.
These foods will not only alkalize your body but are also low in pesticides which means they are really good for you to eat. Here’s what is considered the Clean 15. They are fruits and veggies that can alkalize your body and are low in pesticides.
Here is a picture of a popular food item that is loaded with grease and can cause you to become acidic.
Solution: to avoid becoming too acidic from the foods you eat, I’d suggest eating 2-3 servings of fruits and vegetables every day.
Now that you know which foods are alkalized and acidic, let’s jump in to the next factor.
Factor #2: Drinking Lots of Alcohol & Smoking
An occasional drink is definitely not going to hurt you. While I don’t recommend it, a cigar or cigarette here and there won’t do too much damage either. However, when you make drinking and smoking a habit, it can really cause your body to become acidic and breakdown.
Not to mention the other health side effects like liver and lung problems later on in life. That’s why I feel it was important to mention these topics. You are free to do as you wish, but realize that by drinking and smoking often, it can cause your body to become acidic and lower your testosterone levels in the long run. Now, let’s jump in to the final topic.
Factor #3: Stress
We all have experienced stress at one point or another in our lives. Some of us experience it daily. It’s almost impossible to avoid. Dealing with work, kids, finances etc. can all cause stress.
While a little bit of stress is okay, experiencing it to the point where you can’t sleep at night or have so much anxiety can be a real issue for our testosterone levels and muscle gains. Without getting too scientific, our bodies become catabolic and break down over time making it harder to build muscle and lose fat. I consider being catabolic a bodybuilder’s worst nightmare.
So in a nutshell, I’d do as much as you can to avoid stress because of how acidic it can make your body.
I hope this article has provided value and given you some information you can take with you to protect your testosterone levels and muscle gains. As I mentioned earlier, I used to think following a strict bodybuilding diet was okay for my health.
While there are many things that are great about a bodybuilding diet, there are a few things I feel should be changed when it comes to the foods we’ve been told to eat to build muscle and lose fat.
I’ve given you a detailed list of some foods to eat, as well as some lifestyle factors that can help you remain alkalized and in amazing health. If you found this information useful, please feel free to share it with a friend or family member so that can benefit from this health advice.
Want More Men’s Health Related Articles Like This One? Check Out More Articles on My Blog Below…
By Brian Klepacki, MS, CSCS, CISSN, FMS
It is pretty obvious that no guy wants to have man boobs and I’m not talking the Arnold Schwarzenegger kind either.
First off, they look awkward and as you know appearance means a lot to most people. Secondly, they are a sign that something hormonally is wrong with your body. Unfortunately many men do suffer from this issue and I can guarantee that if you ask any one of them if they would like breasts or not, none of them would want to have breasts.
We live in a society that glorifies looks. Especially for those in the population groups of early teens and aging men.
Your ‘looks’ are something that are often ‘looked’ at with very judgmental eyes, the judge being the individual. Then when you throw in something that is not natural looking in this demographic, there is only going to be negative feedback given from the individual and that will most likely lead to self-esteem issues.
It could possibly bring motivation as well since the individual might want to do something more about it. This could potentially bring one to focus more on improving their health, it could also mean that they eat better, but it also could mean that they need to reflect more on what brings satisfaction and real joy.
Unfortunately many people do take looks seriously but sometimes what’s happening on the inside is what really matters.
The medical term for man breasts is gynecomastia. Young boys with gynecomastia have shown lower scores on general tests of standard quality of life assessment, indicating problems in several areas. Even after adjustment for weight and body mass index (BMI), the patients had lower scores for general health, social functioning and mental health. They also had lower scores for physical health, but this was attributed to being overweight.
Breast enlargement can also be associated with lower levels of self-esteem in adolescent boys. This, along with impairment in emotional areas of quality of life, appeared directly related to gynecomastia, rather than being overweight.
Boys with gynecomastia also scored higher on a test of attitudes toward food and eating. However, there was no difference in the rate of clinical eating disorders between groups.
There is Good News Though if You or Someone You Know Has Male Breast Enlargement!
The good news is that gynecomastia is not always a true health threat. But with that said, you do not want to take this condition lightly. Certain conditions, even ones considered rare, should still be looked at by a professional to rule out any other health issues associated with gynecomastia.
In some men, it can be a sign of an overactive thyroid, cirrhosis of the liver, a genetic problem, or some cancers. One of the largest studies conducted to date pooled data from studies of about 2,400 men with breast cancer and 52,000 men without breast cancer and confirmed that risk factors for male breast cancer include obesity, a rare genetic condition called Klinefelter syndrome, and gynecomastia. The results of this work appeared Feb. 19, 2014, in the Journal of National Cancer Institute .
It was determined within this study that gynecomastia, independent from both Klinefelter syndrome and obesity, was associated with a 10-fold increased risk of breast cancer in men.
Gynecomastia can also be a sign of low testosterone and/or elevated estrogen levels. If you are unfamiliar with what testosterone does in the body it controls a variety of “man” functions that are pretty much exclusive to men.
Testosterone is a steroid hormone that stimulates development of male secondary sexual characteristics, produced mainly in the testes, but also in the ovaries and adrenal cortex. Functions like growth of body hair and sexual function are also impacted from testosterone.
Low testosterone is diagnosed when levels fall below a normal range (300 – 1000 ng/dL). A myriad of symptoms can occur if testosterone production drastically drops. Signs of low T (also called hypogonadism) are often subtle and can be mistaken for a natural part of aging.
Because testosterone plays a role in the building and strengthening of muscle, men with low testosterone might notice a decrease in both muscle mass and strength.
Those who try to prevent the muscle loss through weight training might find it difficult to build and repair muscle. Men with low T may also see increases in body fat. Hence, leading to what could potentially be gynecomastia if left untreated or uncontrolled.
Although the reasons behind growth of fat tissue within the breasts are not completely clear, research suggests that testosterone influences the way your body stores fat in this area of the body.
Certain medications can also cause gynecomastia and when you start taking different types of medications there are obvious side effects with anything that is foreign to the body. There are side effects from steroids like enlarged breasts and a tender puffy nipple area which is fairly common among many high level competitive bodybuilders.
You definitely want to be aware of the side effects for whatever drugs you are taking either over-the-counter or prescribed. Do your research and make sure these effects are acceptable. If you have enlarged man breasts, seek professional care and confront the issue as soon as possible.
I”m glad to be back home even if it’s so hot it feels like I”m walking through pudding when I go outside.
I just returned from a trip to CT to visit the parents while attending a wedding in MA for my wife’s cousin Cassie.
Anytime I meet new people and I tell them I run an Internet Business related to building muscle the questions always start pouring in.
One guy at my table said he only trains each body part once per week. Another guy says he makes better gains training each body part twice a week. They asked who was right and I’m going to have to agree with my buddy Jason Ferruggia.
If you don’t know Jason he’s the Chief Training Advisor for Men’s Fitness and he runs a hardcore gym in Jersey. He’s one of the top strength & conditioning guys in the country so when he takes the time to explain something, I listen.
I told the guys at the table I’d write a blog post about their question and I couldn’t think of a better person to have do a guest post than Jason. Here’s what he said when I asked him who was right…….
“I believe the two keys to effective training are overload and frequency. He who makes the greatest strength gains (in a hypertrophy rep range) over a given time period, while training the muscle as frequently as possible, will get the greatest size gains. The key is to do just enough to stimulate a hypertrophy response then get out and recover and get back to the gym as soon as possible. As long as you keep the volume low, the frequency can remain high and you can make consistent strength gains. As long as the weights are going up you know you are not over trained.
Like Lee Haney said, “stimulate, don’t annihilate.” No matter how many sets you do, the majority of people will not require a full seven days of recovery between body parts. But when you do a ton of sets you create the need for that amount of time between workouts because each workout would take three hours if you hit more than one or two muscle groups on a typical high volume bodybuilding program. That may be fine if you are inhumanly strong and 260 pounds of rock hard muscle. But for the average guy, he is going to detrain and actually start to lose size. It’s two steps forward, two steps back. With lower volume and higher frequency you can actually take one smaller step forward, but remain there with no steps back. This is the optimal plan for the average, drug free trainee.”
Another question people ask me a lot is what sites I like to visit and who I like to read up on. Well Jay’s site is right up my alley. I like his no BS attitude and he doesn’t sugar coat anything.
He’s the author of a best selling program called Muscle Gaining Secrets. It’s a great mass building program and totally explains why 95% of all hardgainers are dead wrong in how they train for muscle growth.
Jason is actually running a promo right now. He’s giving away three extra bonus items for anyone that buys his MGS program in the next 3-days.
Limited-Time Bonus #1: Renegade Cardio: Intervals, steady state, fasted, fed, high intensity, low intensity… with all the conflicting information and confusion it’s no wonder most people will never see their abs no matter how hard they try. They’re doing it all wrong! But I finally set the record straight and allow you to steal my closely guarded secret cardio workouts, usually only reserved for my highest paying clients. Get ready to get shredded!
Limited-Time Bonus #2: MGS Advanced Mass Building Guide: After you’ve completed the main program and packed on your first 20-30 pounds of ripped muscle you’ll be ready to move on to the advanced level. But be warned, this workout is so powerful that you absolutely must complete the basic program first in order to prepare your body for the extreme metamorphosis it’s about to experience!
Limited-Time Bonus #3: Armed & Dangerous: Let’s face it, everybody wants and envies a pair of big, muscular, sleeve stretching arms. A pair of pipe cleaners dangling in a loose t-shirt is a terrible look and one that will get you no respect from the guys or the girls. With this arm specialization workout you will add 2 inches of awe inspiring, rock solid muscle to your arms in just 8 short weeks!
You should go over to Jay’s site and find out more about his Muscle Gaining Secrets program while he’s offering these cool Bonus items.