The Anabolic Solution for Recreational and Competitive Bodybuilders
By Mauro Di Pasquale, BSc, MD, MRO, MFS
MetabolicDiet.com Books, MD+ Press
With a body mass index of around nineteen it would not occur to me to claim any expertise on bulking up, so I don’t have much to say about how well the method in this book works. One certainly can’t argue with Dr. Di Pasquale’s results. The gist of the method involves eating a low carbohydrate diet during the week (five days a week) and eating a higher carb diet on the weekend. Obviously, working out is also a key part of the method. Steroids are not part of the method—good thing. Supplements may augment the program, which are discussed in the book, but the core of the anabolic solution seems to focus on diet.
The book contains considerable discussion about what kinds of foods to eat, especially on the low-carb days. That discussion is actually quite good for the most part. The good doctor is a fan of red meat, dairy, eggs, bacon and healthy animal fat in general. I think he also gets it right on the topic of water—drink when you feel like it, otherwise don’t. Don’t worry about cookie-cutter recommendations for how much.
If you have a hankering to hulk up and get huge, this program might work for most men and maybe even women. When looking at the protocol from the viewpoint of compatibility with WAPF principles, there are a few problems. While Dr. Di Pasquale is very good on fats in general, in his discussion on butter versus margarine his take on which is better is surprisingly non-committal in light of everything else he says. He got some of his ideas from the book Fats That Kill, Fats that Heal, by Udo Erasmus. You can see our thumbs down review of that book on our website. He also seems a little too concerned about cholesterol and not concerned enough about artificial sweeteners.
Even if you do desire to be a massively muscled stud-muffin, you might want to think long term before you dive in. I personally don’t think the dietary requirements are too grueling although some might disagree. I think you can maintain this lifestyle if you are really committed to it, but it still requires a lot of work and time that most people don’t have. Even more will not have the time or motivation to continue the program indefinitely to maintain their results. If you want to know what happens after you bulk up and then quit the maintenance program, I’m sure you can find recent pictures of a shirtless Arnold out there in cyberspace. Not a pretty sight.
Supplements, as mentioned earlier, are not the central feature of the book but they do get a significant amount of space. Since the full effects of any food or supplement can take a long time to manifest, anything that hasn’t been around for at least a few centuries is an experiment. That would cover just about all supplements.
For those who want to look like the Incredible Hulk, this might be the optimum book. For those who just want optimum health, this is not the best source for information. There are enough inconsistencies with Weston A. Price Foundation principles scattered through the book to keep the thumb DOWN.
This article appeared in Wise Traditions in Food, Farming and the Healing Arts, the quarterly magazine of the Weston A. Price Foundation, Fall 2010.