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Women and Dietary Fat Intake

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Women and Dietary Fat Intake, with some notes on training and performance over the monthly cycle:


As with most things, this will vary from individual to individual.  With that said, its almost never recommend that a female goes under 50g/day of dietary fat intake.

There are a couple key points which should be made:
- Generally women burn more fat, less carbs, and less protein than men when comparing for equal activities
- Generally the more fat a women eats, the more estrogen/testosterone they produce (anabolism)
- Higher fat intakes in women potentially burn more calories during exercise and are leaner

The time of month actually matters!

During follicular phase, women are estrogen dominant.  Anabolic, burn more fat during aerobic activity but more carbs every other time.

Early follicular after bleeding: strongest of the month.  If size is the goal, push heavier hypertrophy work (6-10).  Late follicular as estrogen goes up: dip in weight training performance.  Lighter hypertrophy work (10-15)

Ovulation: slight bump in testosterone but it?s brief.

In the luteal phase, she is catabolic.  Progesterone blocks androgen receptor and breaks down protein.  More fat burned than carbs, insulin resistant.  Metabolic rate up but so is hunger.  Magnesium helps with cravings.  Good time to focus on fat loss if hunger can be kept under control.  Low intensity aerobic work. 

Early luteal phase: another bump in strength but less than post-ovulation.  Consider neural strength work here.  You can also train less frequently on weights here.  Glycogen depletion with some metabolic work (intervals,metabolic weight training) will enhance full body fat oxidation on top of hormonal effects.  So a bit of heavy work early luteal with some metabolic work.  Maybe metabolic work right after ovulation to deplete glycogen, heavy workout mid mid luteal phase, metabolic work at the end right before.

Late luteal phase (PMS): it all goes wrong for some women.  Coordination out the window, strength down, mood shitty.  Blood glucose gets wonky here, more fruit.  This is a good place for an unloading phase.  Pump it up on machines.  Nothing requiring coordination.  Sets up for the next PR phase post ovulation.



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