First off – don’t jump into smashing poptarts in order to hit your calorie totals. Despite there being some good science behind IIFYM, IIFYM was not designed to allow you to crush down sweets in order to attain your carbohydrate and fat totals. Doing so will shortchange your efforts due to a stark lack of micronutrients necessary for growth.
That being said, consuming 4000+ kCal per day can definitely be tough if you’re trying to keep your consumption relatively “clean” and micronutrient dense. Short of high leptin levels, the driving factor behind this is simply a digestive tract that can’t keep up with your consumption. Here are a few tips to ease your pain (and your #2s).
- Drink more water.
Water is an interesting thing. In a caloric deficit, it can aid in fighting off hunger pains. In a caloric surplus, it can prevent your body from blocking up the GI tract and aid in speeding along digestion. Long story short; drink at least a gallon and a half a day, no matter which dietary phase you’re in.
- Implement a prebiotic.
No, not a PRObiotic. While there are situations where a probiotic is necessary (after a course of antibiotics, etc), probiotics tend to disrupt the natural balance of your GI tract and cause more harm than good.
The solution to this problem is to strengthen the EXISTING gut bacteria instead of introducing exogenous bacteria. This can be done through the use of a prebiotic – aka “GI bacteria food”. Raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar is the king of pre-biotics, and can be taken in capsule form if you find that the liquid aggravates your esophagus.
- Increase your insoluble fiber intake.
Insoluble fiber is the hard, crunchy form of fiber that absolutely cannot be broken down by the human body. In the GI tract, this really tends to “push things along”. Unfortunately, insoluble fiber is hard to come by. The best source tends to be bran-based cereals like Fiber One – which brings a nice hefty 120 calories per cup along with it. The best non-caloric source of insoluble fiber is Psyllium Husk. Be sure to start with half a serving and work your way up.
There are a number of other methods to increase your caloric consumption without feeling like you’re going to explode, but we’ll cover those in a later article. For now, stick with these three healthy digestive tract.
Jared Boynton is a strength, performance, and conditioning coach with a wide range of knowledge on nutrition, supplementation, biomechanics. His experience has been proven through years of real-world implementation with both his own physique and the physiques of numerous clients. You can contact Jared via email at Coach@JaredBoynton.com.