The reverse dieting debate ft. Eric Helms, Layne Norton & Peter Fischen

It’s up!



Many of the references and who-says-what-when are in the description field below the video on Youtube.


  1. Paul says:

    “With rational thought, we can overcome our emotional limitations” – (Did you coin this?) You really get me, I made the right choice in coach.

    Look forward to more of these.

  2. Chris says:

    Thx Menno, for putting the “evidence” into a evidence-based coaching roundtable.
    Layne is just horrible: The age-old “Coaching is more art than science” blubber, “Science is just means” – well then you dont need science, right? If you can just look at your individuell data points aka clients and figure out what is “best” for them without the dumb means. I really wonder why Layne got his PhD (marketing reasons, I guess) and how he got it with that mindset.
    I also wondered why nobody pointed out to him that going to your new maintenance calories swiftly simply WONT add huge amounts of fat. Why? Because theyre maintenance calories, so per definition they cant make you fat quickly! Still he hammers on to that point with clients´ stories. Well, if he cant figure out his clients´ new maintenance calories and puts them in a huge surplus – ofc they get fat…

    • Alexey says:

      The point is what you believe is “maintanance” after a long diet. Whether it is a function of LBM and organ mass or a lower value due to adaptation.
      Some people will likely take longer to kick start their metabolism to assumed “maintanance” and will likely gain weight on their calculated maintanance calories until their CNS, thyroid, adrenals, etc. get up to speed. Others not so long.
      I personally know women who f*cked up their body by overtraining on low calories but refuse to eat to their assumed maintanance level because they gain fat ridiculously fast, which is a total nightmare for them.

      • Chris says:

        Well, if you watched the video, youd hear Menno show evidence that “getting up to speed” only lasts a couple of days and IS then a function of LBM and organ mass. So theres no need for long(er) reverse dieting.

  3. Hey Menno,

    Regarding the strategy of offering a client eating structure in order to create an ‘intuitional’ eating pattern:

    Would this also be a wise approach for people that don’t have a very organizational approach to their food intake in the first place (e.g. highly emotional eaters, not bodybuilding-types)?

    Should they be restricted in such a way, or be given more freedom in their diet (IIFYM-style) in order to stay closer to their natural tendencies, so there’s more chance of them maintaining the diet in the long run?

    • Ad libitum dieting is certainly a lifestyle that I tend to recommend for the more general population and I’ve used it in anorexic clients too, for example, but I do also place great value on creating calorie awareness via the skill of macro tracking. The best strategy is individual.

      • Thanks for your reply.

        I’ve noticed that this ignorance about caloric content of foods often creates an ‘eating block’ when a client cannot adhere to their structured diet schedule. They simply don’t know what to eat instead.

        Thus far, I’ve tried to mitigate this by offering substitute food options (with same macros) when the foods of the diet schedule are not available.

        What do you think is an efficient way to ‘teach’ calorie awareness so they’re not dependent on my offering substitute food options? Asking them to scan labels? ‘Practicing’ by asking what they would think to be an appropriate substitute? Some form of app?

  4. Dave says:

    Hey Menno,

    Any update on the launch of cybernetic fitness? Looking forward to the site. Thanks for all you do!

  5. Allen says:

    In a biological sense a lower caloric intake while still achieving a max potential would lead to less overall usage and a longer use time?

    What I am am getting at was the observation that peoples metabolism adapted to increased caloric load, resulting in their new maintenance energy set point.

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