What is a calorie, calorie theory, reduce carbs to get lean, Stemulite, testosterone supplements

Q&A with Mike Furci

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QHi Mike,
First I just wanted to say I find your articles very informative, and I'm glad you're debunking the myths of saturated fat and cholesterol causing heart disease. These myths just won't die.

I was curious though as to what you suggest someone do to get shredded. I believe you have mentioned that you believe reducing carbs is the best way to get lean, as Vince Gironda did. But do you believe in calories-in vs. calories-out as well? If you are cutting weight, do you reduce your food as well (same as reducing calories) or do you just drastically reduce or eliminate carb sources in food (grains, fruits, veggies, dairy)?

Thanks for your help,

Pete DocterA calorie is the amount of heat needed to raise 1 kilogram of water 1 degree Celsius at sea level. What does this mean? A Double Whopper with cheese contains 990 calories. If we were to burn this burger, it would produce 990 calories, enough energy to raise 990 kilograms of water 1 degree Celsius.

Calories are measured in a sealed device called a "calorimeter" which locks in heat of burning food. A small vacuum container of water is placed above the food. Once the food is completely burned, the temperature of the water is measured. The rise in temperature will determine the amount of calories. The calorimeter can show the total amount of energy of a Big Mac, but it cannot account for what the body doesn't absorb, or the energy used in the digestion and assimilation of it.

Does counting the number of calories consumed really matter, or is it even necessary when trying to lose weight? In a word: No! Counting calories is completely inaccurate and a waste of time. Our bodies do not process food like a calorimeter. Our bodies do not use all the food we consume as energy, nor do we assimilate it all in the same manner. Moreover, we do not store the food we consume with the same efficiency. The assertion that macro-nutrients are all processed the same between individuals is just foolish. This is the basis for the calorie theory.

The best thing you can do is eliminate as much sugar and processed foods from your diet as you can. Eat as many whole natural foods as you can, including: beef, fowl, fish, vegetables, raw dairy products and some fruit. The following nutritional principles will help anyone on their way to getting leaner.

1. Plan your meals in advance.

2. Prepare your food in advance.

3. Do not starve yourself. Eat when you're hungry and stop when you're full.

4. Eat at least four times per day.

5. Eat protein with every meal.

QHi Mike,
I read an article online about Stemulite. They were saying it's a natural supplement that is similar to steroids, without the side effects. I've written to you before and have read lots of your articles and have always found your opinion to be honest and true. So, I wanted to ask you your thoughts on this product.

Let me know what you think. Thanks,
Long Beach, Calif.

Pete DocterThis is a perfect example of a product manufacturer taking advantage of consumers. "A natural supplement similar to steroids without the side effects." Are you f***ing kidding me? I will concede some of the ingredients used in Stemulite have been shown in studies to possess positive effects. The amounts of these ingredients used in this rip-off, however, are so low you have a better chance of getting diarrhea than increasing your performance. If you're taking this product to raise your testosterone or growth hormone levels, good luck.

This product is a joke and a total waste of money.

I was just reading your articles on Bullz-Eye.com about testosterone supplements. I am 52 years old and an avid sports guy (played B-ball in college, semi-pro football till I was 38, and I still play basketball). I weight train three days a week and have been doing that for many years. I really have not taken any supplements with the exception of Creatine for a short period.

Because of my age, I really think testosterone is the one supplement I need to consider because we all lose our levels through the years. I really want your opinion of the best product on the market. From your article, it sounds like you are really sold on the Tribex product.

I would appreciate your response and opinion of what I should try and what to expect.

Cecil M.

Pete DocterI would try alternating each month between Tribex and 6OXO. Ergopharm also makes 6oxo Extreme which contains Resveratrol. This is a polyphenol found in foods like nuts and grapes. It's the compound in red wine we keep hearing so many good things about. There is a mound of literature demonstrating the positive effects of Resveratrol including: cardiovascular benefits, anti-cancer benefits and anti-aging effects. These benefits and others seem to stem from its anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties.

I would also take ZMA at night. I recommend this supplement because most people are deficient in the minerals zinc and magnesium, which perform may vital functions in the body. This deficiency is mainly due to the debilitating effects of stress. Many different things in our environment cause stress including family, work, friends and finances.

Unfortunately, a good diet just doesn't cut it when trying to combat the effects of stress. Our food supply is so processed and so far from its natural state, it's become very difficult to get the required nutrients needed to stay healthy without supplementation.

Nutritionists and scientists have found that while many athletes – from weekend warriors to professionals -- pay close attention to diet and supplementation, they still continue to be deficient in the key nutrients zinc and magnesium. When these elements are brought back to normal levels, there is an increase in free testosterone and strength.

There is also hormone replacement therapy. This requires a thorough exam and blood work. If your blood work shows you're in need of hormone therapy, a good physician can prescribe the necessary drugs to bring your body to optimum levels. This must be done through a physician, but not just any physician. The average doctor doesn't have the knowledge required to perform this type of service. Ask around for references, look on the Internet, and check the local yellow pages.

I read your articles on "More muscle and more sex." I'm just not sure which one I should really use. I will tell you a little history. I have been diagnosed with hypogonadism a few years back.

I'm 50 years old. It has always been a struggle in this area of my life, dealing with fatigue, stress, over-tiredness and so on.

I recently lost my job and now have no health insurance. I used to get either Androl jell or Testim which is a daily jell you put on yourself after you shower. (Which is very expensive, by the way, but with insurance it was affordable). The jell raises the testosterone level in your body.

Ok! So now I am looking for an alternative to that product. Which one do you think would be the best for me? I thought the Met-Rx – Hardcore ZMA would be the best. Would you agree or not? Thanks for any advice or help you could offer for my situation.

David M.

I'm sorry that you lost your job and no longer have insurance. I've been in that position before, and can attest to how rough it is.

I would recommend Tribex Gold and 6OXO, alternating every other month. This will not be as good as a prescription medication, but you may be pleasantly surprised. The gels and creams aren't effective for everyone, but do help. If you're going to use a prescription medication once you get insurance, you would be much better off getting your doc to prescribe testosterone that can be injected, instead of the transdermal.

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