How to Lose Fat and Build Muscle at the Same Time

Exercise is responsible for about 15% of fat loss. Dietary changes make up for the other 85%.

While your diet makes up the bulk of your fat loss, it’s still important to exercise. The key to building muscle while losing fat is to increase the intensity and volume of your exercise. If you are on keto and are not exercising, you will stop gaining muscle and possibly even lose muscle mass.

To learn more about exercise check out Dr. Berg’s video, Best Exercise Tips – How to Figure Out Your Perfect Exercise

Exercise and growth hormone

Exercise can stimulate growth hormone up to 700% – which helps you build muscle. Keep in mind that you need plenty of recovery time and sleep after exercising. If you over train without recovering, the benefits of exercise reduce significantly.

For example, if you are working out every single day and you are not sleeping because you are stressed out then the benefit of exercising is not going to be there.

How to lose fat and build muscle at the same time

The lower your carbs, the more you will lose weight because your insulin level will lower. But, insulin is also essential for the growth of muscle.

If you increase your carbs to build muscle, you’ll also stop losing fat. So what can you do to both build muscle and lose fat?

Increasing your protein can help increase insulin without stopping fat loss – if you get the right balance.

Find the balance just right for you. Keep your carbs lower below 50 grams and increase your protein a little bit more than 8 ounces.  This will increase insulin and glucagon (to help burn fat). 

Too much protein can potentially slow down your weight loss. It is a balancing act between having the right amount of protein and the right amount of carbs.  To get the best results play around between 30 to 50 grams of carbs and keep your protein to 8 ounces and then maybe increase it a little bit to provide a little bit more insulin to the muscles but at the same time increasing glucagon.  The carb and protein amount is an individual thing you have to play around with this to get the sweet spot.

Fat and your energy levels on keto

Fat provides energy for doing more exercise. If you go low fat and you are fasting. You could potentially make your body too tired and not have the energy to do the exercise. Do not go below 75 grams. That will force your body to burn more of its own fat and not turn the dietary fat into ketones.  Having sufficient amounts of dietary fat in your diet will definitely help fasting.

Fasting, fat loss, and muscle gain

Fasting is the most important thing for losing weight because it brings your insulin levels down. If you are doing intermittent fasting, you can handle more protein without causing fat gain, because you are going to give your body the time to digest a larger amount of protein.

Fasting can increase growth hormone by up to 2000% as compared to exercise, which is 700%.  You get a major spike in growth hormone when you do fasting. Growth hormone is all about building muscle.

When you fast there is also a protein sparing effect that happens and that means that your body is not going to be using your own muscle protein as fuel. It protects the muscles. Of course, there is a point where you burn off all your fat and then the body is going to starve and use its muscles but it is not going to happen when you do routine fasting or even periodic prolonged fasting.

The importance of electrolytes for fasting and exercise

Make sure you have 1-1.5 tsp. of sea salt and plenty of potassium and magnesium per day while fasting, or you will not have the energy to exercise.

If you do not get your electrolytes, you may develop keto fatigue.  In all of your cells you have a sodium potassium pump that generates the electrical energy to allow the muscles and nerve to work. You will not be able to exercise because your muscles do not have the electrolytes. They are going to get tired.

All of these different factors relate to each other to build muscle while you lose the fat.

To learn more please read How Much Protein Is Too Much Protein In The Ketogenic Diet?

This Post has been condensed from Dr. Berg’s video, How to Lose Fat and Build Muscle at the Same Time

Dr. Berg is a chiropractor who specializes in Healthy Ketosis & Intermittent Fasting. He is the author of the best-selling book The Healthy Keto Plan, and is the Director of Dr. Berg Nutritionals. He no longer practices, but focuses on health education through social media. He has taught students nutrition as an adjunct professor at Howard University.

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