Building High-Performance Muscle™
Author: Mike Roussell, PhD

Non-Sexy Training and Nutrition
by Alwyn Cosgrove and Mike Roussell | Tue, Nov 13, 2007

Testosterone runs a lot of "sexy" new training articles. Trouble with that is the essential stuff, stuff like progression, energy system work, the 90% rule, and supplements, often gets forgotten. Not so with this article.

Fish Oil and Fat Loss
by Mike Roussell, PhD | Tue, Jul 17, 2007

Fish oil cures so many ailments, we can't figure out why fish don't get more respect. For instance, why not replace the stars on Old Glory with tiny mackerel and herring? Okay, maybe not, but after reading this article, you may have your own ideas on how to give fish oil some props.

Total Calories Count! - 05.14.07
by Mike Roussell, PhD | Mon, May 14, 2007

The type of calories (protein, carbs, and fats) you eat does matter, but don't overlook the importance of total calories. Not reaching your goals? Look at your total calories. Regardless of macronutrient breakdown, if you're trying to lose fat then you need to be in a caloric deficient. If your fat loss has stalled and your calories are already low, maybe you need to consider temporally bumping up your calories (250-300 calories) to give your metabolism a jumpstart, instead of re-arranging your macronutrients.

Top 3 Nutritional Mistakes (and how to fix them)
by Mike Roussell, PhD | Thu, May 03, 2007

More often than not people's nutritional problems can be fixed by a couple of very simple changes and/or additions. Mike Roussell has outlined the top 3 mistakes people make (along with how to to go about fixing them).

Nutrition Quest: Vol 3
by Mike Roussell, PhD | Thu, Apr 12, 2007

Did you know that if you pig out after a short calorie restriction period, you can trick your body into adding more muscle? Did you know that you can make protein bars out of road kill? Okay we lied about that last one, but regardless, Mike does offer some cool recipes for high-protein snacks.

Go Ahead, Eat Some Fat! - 03.19.07
by Mike Roussell, PhD | Mon, Mar 19, 2007

After reviewing the literature, one can't say that increased consumption of saturated fat definitively increases Testosterone levels, but it may , especially in strength training individuals. It's evident, though, that a higher total intake of dietary fat (30-35% of calories) does increase Testosterone levels compared to a low fat diet. I use a variety of foods to reach my daily saturated fat intakes: Whole eggs Red meat Coconut Oil Shredded Coconut Coconut Milk Whole Fat Plain Yogurt Butter

Saturated Fat: Killer or Testosterone Booster?
by Mike Roussell, PhD | Thu, Mar 08, 2007

We run articles about dietary fat on T-Nation fairly often, but do you truly understand fat, especially saturated fat? If you don't, you might be seriously shortchanging your health and your physique.

Pre-Sleep Nutrition - 01.29.07
by Mike Roussell, PhD | Mon, Jan 29, 2007

Before your nighttime fast, consume 40-60 grams of slow release protein, casein (Metabolic Drive and/or cottage cheese), with the addition of some healthy fats (peanut butter, cashews, or almonds). The combination of these two food types will allow for extremely slow gastric emptying and thus prolonged digestion. Prolonging digestion insures a steady stream of amino acids throughout the night to maximize protein synthesis and muscle growth!

Don't Kill the Messenger
by Mike Roussell, PhD | Wed, Jan 24, 2007

Complexity — Simplicity — Ubiquity. The complexity of the human body is incredible. Maybe it's not necessarily the sheer complexity, but the complexity in spite of utter simplicity.

Hardgainer No More!
by Mike Roussell, PhD | Wed, Jan 17, 2007

Many people struggle to build muscle and get stronger. Fortunately the diagnosis is often easy — they need to eat more, or better yet, eat smarter! In my time as a nutritionist I've been hard pressed to find a person who's eating enough but isn't growing.

BCAA at Midnight - 01.11.07
by Mike Roussell, PhD | Thu, Jan 11, 2007

During the course of the night, protein synthesis can drop by up to 30%. So if you wake up to pee, it's definitely a good idea to pop some BCAA. Leucine, found in BCAA, is a key regulator of protein synthesis and will help attenuate the decrease in protein synthesis that occurs due to fasting over night. However, don't wake yourself up on purpose. High quality sleep is important for recovery and growth, so we don't want to interrupt that.

Spice It Up - 12.18.06
by Mike Roussell, PhD | Mon, Dec 18, 2006

People who think that eating to drop body fat has to be bland and boring need to smarten up. Herbs and spices are calorie-free and allow for limitless flavors and possibilities. Here are some of my favorites: soy sauce, minced ginger, minced garlic, diced scallions, balsamic vinegar, garlic, diced fresh rosemary, blacken seasoning, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and cayenne pepper. Try 'em!

Nutrition Quest: Vol 2
by Mike Roussell, PhD | Wed, Dec 06, 2006

Breaking Down the Zone Q: What do you think about the Zone Diet?

No Fish for Breakfast - 12.05.06
by Mike Roussell, PhD | Tue, Dec 05, 2006

Don't take your fish oil on an empty stomach first thing in the morning. EPA and DHA are "magical" but they're also fats. This means they can be burned as energy. So don't take them at a time when your body is dying for fuel — it's just a waste.

27 Nutrition Facts
by Mike Roussell, PhD | Mon, Nov 27, 2006

Several months ago I picked up my first copy of Men's Health (they might have over a million readers, but I've never been one). I leafed through the magazine in about 10 minutes and had two major thoughts: 1. This magazine is for people with ADD. 2. Is Jimmy the Bartender really a bartender?

Anti-Skinny Fat Manifesto
by Mike Roussell, PhD | Wed, Oct 25, 2006

There was a time when the image of masculinity was characterized by super-hero like size, round muscle bellies, and low body fat percentages. The former ideal physique was epitomized by Sly Stallone or perhaps even Arnold in Commando . These men sculpted physiques that not only looked strong, but were strong.

Eat Protein, Get Cut - 10.17.06
by Mike Roussell, PhD | Tue, Oct 17, 2006

At its most basic level, digesting and processing protein takes significantly more energy than carbohydrates or fat, and carbohydrates take more energy to process than fats. Since protein has a higher thermic effect, it's a good idea to increase your protein levels while restricting your calories to maximum this effect.

Harness the Power of TEF
by Mike Roussell, PhD | Tue, Oct 10, 2006

What is TEF? How can you maximize it? Does it even matter? You may be thinking, "Oh yeah, I remember somebody talking about this. I need to eat more protein. It's the key to fat loss or something..." Yes and no. Fortunately, TEF, or the thermic effect of food, is much more interesting and complex than just eating more protein.

Nutrition Quest: Vol 1
by Mike Roussell, PhD | Tue, Sep 12, 2006

Q: Which is better to use butter or margarine? I've heard benefits and downfall of both?

Diagnosing Food Allergies - 08.31.06
by Mike Roussell, PhD | Thu, Aug 31, 2006

Gluten (a wheat protein) allergies are grossly under-diagnosed, and the medical community is starting to catch on. If you're concerned about having a food allergy, remove the food from your diet and keep a journal. Record how you're feeling physically, digestively, energy wise, etc. Do this for 5-7 days. Introduce the food back into your diet and observe if there are any changes. Do this for each of the foods you're concerned about. Or go see an allergy doctor and they have fancy tests.

Bad Fish - 08.11.06
by Mike Roussell, PhD | Fri, Aug 11, 2006

Most athletes should be looking to consume 2-3g of EPA/DHA a day to maintain optimal health and keep inflammation under control. If you're trying to get all this from farm raised salmon, you're a fool for two reasons: 1) The ratio of omega-6:omega-3 in farm raised salmon is poor and you'll never be able to achieve an optimal omega-6:omega-3 ratio in your overall diet. 2) In order to get that much EPA/DHA in your diet, you'll end up consuming dangerously high levels of some serious toxins, which puts your health at risk. So what's the better option? Wild salmon and supplementation (fish oil capsules.)

The Probiotics Cheat Sheet - 08.01.06
by Mike Roussell, PhD | Tue, Aug 01, 2006

Probiotics can be healthful supplements during times of very intense training or dieting, and may also be useful for boosting the immune system. To ensure that the probiotics survive the stomach, purchase an enterically coated version that has a variety of bacteria strains. Take your probiotics on an empty stomach or with dairy products. Primadophilus Optima by Nature's Way is a good choice.

Naked Truth: Xenoestrogens
by Mike Roussell, PhD | Mon, Jul 31, 2006

The strength coaches, trainers, scientists, nutritionists, and editors at T-Nation have been debunking nutrition, supplementation, and fitness myths for years now with topics ranging from glutamine use to training frequency to tuna fish & mercury.

Man Fuel #2
by Mike Roussell, PhD | Tue, Jul 18, 2006

When it comes to building muscle or performing at your peak athletically, nutrition is 50% of the equation. Or is it 75%? Maybe 90%? Whatever. It's, like, really important, okay? In this Q & A column, T-Nation contributor Mike Roussell answers all your questions about the stuff at the end of your fork.

Organic Goodness - 05.01.06
by Mike Roussell, PhD | Mon, May 01, 2006

You should purchase organic versions of these fruits and vegetables as often as possible because thousands of government tests results have shown that the conventional versions of these foods consistently have the highest levels of pesticides. Apples Bell Peppers Celery Cherries Imported Grapes Nectarines Peaches Pears Potatoes Red Raspberries Spinach Strawberries What should you NEVER buy organic? Seafood. The USDA doesn't have a standard or certification for organic seafood. Because of this, companies can put "organic" all over the labels regardless of whether or not the seafood is wild, farmed, or pumped with antibiotics. You'll just end up paying more for no guaranteed benefit.