So if you were 180lbs. at 25% body fat, and you start eating a low carb diet and within two weeks you lose an incredible 15lbs. and weigh in at 165lbs. chances are that 90% of the weight lost was from water. Another reason why people like low carb diets is because the body’s preferred choice of fuel is from carbohydrates, so cut back on the main source of fuel then the body is going to have to move onto something else for energy and the belief is that it starts to target body fat. What a lot of people don’t realize though is that your muscle proteins are just as much of a target for fuel as your fat is, so the weight you lose beyond just water could be just as much muscle proteins as body fat. So to combat excessive muscle loss during low to no carb dieting is to always get adequate protein through food and supplementation spread out through 4-6 meals per day and especially after exercising. That is only half of it, what many people don’t know is that carbs are in fact muscle sparing! So if you’re considering going low carb if you’re going to eat any carbs make it before and immediately after exercise; generally you’d want to eat slow digesting carbs before a workout (oats, yams, black beans, etc.) and immediately after a workout eat fast digesting carbs or foods that have a lot of sugar like fruits, juice etc. Doing this should allow for minimal muscle loss while dieting and exercising no matter what method of dieting you decide to do.
Remember though, more importantly though, it doesn’t matter what method of dieting you do, it won’t work unless you’re in a calorie deficit, ideally no more than 500-1000 calories (less than maintenance) a day which adds up to 1-2 pounds of weight lost a week. If you have any questions feel free to email me.