What Is the Vertical Diet & Should You Try It?

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The vertical diet, developed by renowned bodybuilder and powerlifter Stan Efferding, asserts to enhance physical performance and body composition. Although it was first created for elite athletes, it is becoming increasingly popular among regular gymgoers as well.

Efferding’s method, which is intended to improve food digestion and correct micronutrient deficiencies, has also started to gain popularity, drawing regular people who want to lose weight and feel better. Is the vertical diet ideal for you? Find out by reading on.

What Is the Vertical Diet?

Due to the way it is set up—looking like an upside-down T—the Vertical Diet got its name. The starches, dairy, fruits, and vegetables at the bottom of the T supply essential micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) required for health, hormones, and more.

White rice and red meat are the two items at the top of the vertical axis, which would satisfy all of your caloric intake and macronutrient requirements (protein, carbohydrates, and fats).

What Foods Can You Eat on Vertical Diet?

On the vertical diet, you should primarily consume food from two sources:

White rice was chosen by Efferding due to its high carbohydrate content and ease of digestion, while red meat was chosen due to its iron, B-vitamin, and zinc levels.

A range of “micronutrient” items, such as the following, are also permitted by the vertical diet:

  • Vegetables low in FODMAP (including potatoes, kale, eggplant, etc.)
  • Low FODMAP fruit (blueberries, unripe bananas)
  • Eggs, broth, whole-fat dairy, fatty seafood, and other items made from animals
  • Legumes and grains, but only if they have been soaked and fermented

Is the Vertical Diet Good for Weight Loss?

It’s easy to lose weight with the Vertical Diet; you just scale your intake of lean red meat and rice up or down to change your caloric intake. As a result, it’s simple to manage your calorie consumption and reduce your food intake if you need to lose weight.

In order to increase energy and build muscle growth, this diet places a strong emphasis on consuming lots of calories. For the immediate energy boost that sportsmen and bodybuilders require, the diet also emphasizes simple carbohydrates like white rice.

It might be helpful for those trying to lose weight, but there are better diets that can do the same thing without removing as many essential nutrients.

What Is the Purpose of the Vertical Diet?

It was created as a way to help people who need a lot of calories without affecting their gut health, such as athletes looking to grow strength and muscle by eating more calories than they burn.

For bodybuilders, powerlifters, and other professional athletes, in particular, a calorie surplus is crucial for building muscle. This diet makes it simpler to have frequent, high-calorie meals without incurring digestive side effects by placing an emphasis on easily digestible foods.

The diet also places a strong emphasis on increasing your carbohydrate intake, which can help you gain muscle mass. According to studies, consuming enough carbohydrates before exercising can improve athletic performance. Additionally, carbs may boost protein synthesis and lessen muscle breakdown.

How Many Vertical Meals Should I Eat a Day?

No matter how many meals you consume during the day, as long as the calories are the same, the results will be the same. On this diet, the order of the meals is not significant.

After determining your calorie needs, the healthiest foods to eat should be chosen based on their micronutrient availability. Stan suggests consuming 0.8 to 1.2 grams of protein, 0.4 to 0.7 grams of fat, and 1-2 grams of carbohydrates per pound of body weight. If a lifter wants to put on weight, their protein intake shouldn’t be too high. Instead, the variable that is added and changed is carbohydrates.

Likewise, be sure to consume enough protein. When a lifter is trying to lose weight and their protein intake becomes too low, they should also cut their fat and carb intake to the lower end of the recommended range. This will assist in creating a calorie deficit for the lifter.