LSee Challenge, Nutrition, Science

LSee Challenge, first : the protocol !

 

LSee’s mission is to provide tools to help people get results through objective, useful data on their metabolism.

We are passionate about science, sports and nutrition, so we know how difficult it is to assess the efficiency of a training protocol or a diet. And we usually don’t have the tools to really know how the body reacts to one or another stimulus.

That why we decided to start the …

LSee challenge

Four company associates, carefully chosen for their physiological diversity and their “guinea pig” spirit, are going to test dietary protocols and supplements and measure the real effects on their metabolisms. Yes, you can call them the Fantastic Four :-).

The main effect we are checking with the experiment is weight loss, but we also want to assess the variability of metabolic responses. We are not pretending to real scientific experiment status: we don’t expect to be published in PubMed ! But we are very excited to be guinea pigs, get some solid data and share the results with all of you.

The guinea pigs … 

Yes we are going to use our own bodies for the experiments !

This is us, in everyday’s attire, we look normal (quite), don’t we ?

 

Now … this is us again, stripped bare, for the experiment’s requirements 🙂

Julia, the very gifted video editor vidéaste who shoots and edits all the LSee videos:

 

Cyril, the founder and CEO, and total crossfit addict:

 

Guillaume, the business developper, rugbyman and anywhere, anytime cereal muncher:

 

Last, Philippe, yours truly,  blog writer, amongst other interests, and marathon runner on his spare time :

LSee disclaims getting any royalties for underwear product placement, and mentions that our avatars have been produced by EXSENS.

Tools of the trade

We are going to use two sets of tools and protocols for our measurements:

  • Weight : biometrical impedance scale
  • Metabolism : blood ketones monitor

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If you are familiar with both topics, keep reading.

If not, some explanations here (weight measurement) and here (ketones).

Test time !  

We have tons of ideas. After very tough negociations, we agree on the following experiments :

  • LCHF combined with 18×6 Intermittent Fasting
  • Use of ketone precursors like coconut oil, previously discussed here
  • Use of exogenous ketones

We unanimously decided not to try traditional “fat-burners” such as “raspberry ketones”, based on our very strong skepticism about their “other than marketing” value – totally proven by current medical litterature.

About what we are going to do, some explanations:

LCHF : Low Carb High Fat

Diet that reduces the amount of carbs you eat.  To make things simple : eaten carbs = increased blood glucose levels = insulin secretion = surplus energy storage signalling – first as glycogen (a little) and then as fat (all you can eat, litterally). One key concept of LCHF is to limit storage by reducing insulin spikes. When low carb goes as low as possible, it’s called nutritional ketosis, supposedly the metabolic state where maximum fat is used as energy. Fat burning machines 🙂 !

The “low” really depends on people : nutritional ketosis can kick in with 50 grams of carbs per day, or 30, or 10. This is nothing new. All « old folks advice» mentioned that getting rid of bread, grains and spirits was a good way to lose weight, long before fat got demonized with the « low-fat » hysteria. It was actually recorded the first time in UK in 1863 with a guy called William Banting. Then the « Atkins diet », and the « paleo » trend. It’s still controvertial, but which diet is not ? What is sure is that it cannot hurt to reduce (or even remove) refined sugars, and that the human body can fonction properly with very little carbs, then, why not ?

Intermittent fasting

Many medical studies show that not eating for at least 18 hours triggers some of the same positive metabolic effects than massive calorie restriction, minus the constraints – who wants to be hungry all the time ? Lipolysis (fat-burning) even seems to be more efficient ! Even if low calories input is one of the most usual way of dieting, it eventually lowers basal metabolism, and will result in weight regain in the long run. For most of mammals (and even worms) caloric restriction also means significant life extension – from 20 to 40%. So, on top of losing weight, we may get a couple extra days of life !

 

Supplements ! we want supplements !  

Weight loss articles and ads and the business that goes with it overflow with a cornucopia of products and supplements, many being « fat-burners » but also ketosis precursors. The « medium chain triglycerides » contained in coconut oil are supposed to be transformed into ketones by the liver as fast as possible. It’s possible to buy them, that’s what we did. Are C8 or C10 MCT better for ketosis ? We’ll see !

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Some of the supplements we are going to test

Last, the newcomers on the market:  exogenous ketones. In fact – it’s our friend ßOHB that became simply … drinkable.

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ßOHB orange flavour !

Yes, the issue with ßOHB is that the normal taste is absolutely awful (somewhere in between jet fuel and puke, yours truly did test it). For regular people to buy it, it has to be packaged in a reasonably edible way – here : orange flavor.

The molecule seems very promising from a health benefits standpoint. But sticking to a ketogenic diet in the country of hamburger and fries (or baguette and croissants) is terribly challenging. Some biochemists had an idea to have the cake and eat it too (pun intended) by finding a way to be in ketosis while having a regular diet. Enter exogenous ketones.

Even if it a totally non-metabolic situation to have ketones, sugar and insulin running at high levels in our veins, and we have no idea how the body will react to this crazy mix.

Our courageous guinea pigs are ready to confront all dangers – and the orange flavored ketones tastes really good, so … we’ll see !

All the stuff is here, we are super motivated … let’s go fat killing !

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To be continued …