A great question from Chris:
Brad, I am on the fence about your program. I have been low-carbing it for a while now with some great results. However I am starting to feel a little limited in what I can eat. It would be nice to have the occasional taco or dessert! Are you saying all calories are the same? Meaning if i switch to ESE and add some carbs to my diet, and still lift, my weight and body comp shouldn’t change b/c of the calorie reduction? Thanks!
A calorie is a calorie. 100%. After all, a Calorie is a unit of measurement. So just as an inch of anything can only ever be an inch long, one calorie from any food is still one calorie.
Now, all macronutrients are not created equal (proteins, fats and carbs do have different effects on the body) but this does not have anything to do with the measurement of calorie (By the way..I think this whole calorie nonsense would disappear if we finally adopted the Joule as the standard measurement of energy..but that’s another story all together).
So to answer your question, I am confident that you can switch to an eat stop eat lifestyle (as long as you are still lifting), increase your carb intake (within reason) and not see a change in your body composition, as long as you do not increase the amount of energy you are consuming.
Regarding your carbohydrate intake, remember even if you moderately increase your carbs on the days you ARE eating, on the 1 or 2 24-hour periods when you are fasting, your carobydrate intake will be ZERO. So most likely it will all balance out.
I do think that macronutrients play an important role in health, and the majority of us could benefit from eating a little less Carbohydrates, but in the end, my opinion is that it’s your ability to eat a wide variety of foods that will bring the best health, and the ability to reduce calorie intake that will bring the best weight loss (add in resistance training if you want to make sure the weight lost if body fat).
PS- In the last month I have heard from a die-hard paleo person, a vegetarian, a fruititarian, and a pasta addict, and they have all found benefits with Eat Stop Eat. Bottom line – Eat Stop Eat doesn’t discriminate, it can help people of all diet-beliefs lose weight and feel great!