IM OVER-40 FITNESS Expert advice for over-40 athletes about training, supplementation, nutrition, hormones, and more. By Jay Campbell and Jim Brown Leonard: Please list the pros and cons of high-intensity cardio for an over-40 individual. High-intensity exercise can be beneficial for aging athletes when rapid fat loss is neces- sary in the shortest time possible. However, it can also be counterproductive to individuals with less muscle mass. Remember, it’s crucial to retain as much lean skeletal muscle as possible to maintain an optimal basal meta- bolic rate while at rest. Frank: Isn’t all protein the same? Why should I spend the extra money on “pure” protein versus products that have propri- etary blends in the big-box stores? Learning how to read a nutrition label is a must if you are truly trying to optimize your health. You will have to supplement your food with certain minerals, vitamins, and likely pro- tein. One of the tricks of the trade is putting ingredients into a proprietary blend. Yes, it’s a way for a company to protect its formula from being copied and fueling competition. In many cases, however, it’s used to enable a company to use less than clinical dosages in a formula and still claim the ingredient on label. This is done to save the company from investing in costly raw material. To better understand what we’re talking about, let’s look at protein first. There are three main classifications of whey protein. TYPE PROTEIN LACTOSE COMMON APPLICATION Whey Protein Concentrate 25-89% 4-52% Protein beverages and bars, confectionery and bakery products, infant formula, and other nutritional food products Whey Protein Isolate 90-95% 0.5-1% Protein supplementation products, protein beverages, protein bars, and other nutritional food products Hydrolyzed Whey Protein 80-90% 0.5-10% Infant formula, and sports and medical nutrition products As you can see from the chart above, if you are buying whey protein concentrate (WPC), you could have a product with 25 percent protein in it or 89 percent. It won’t specify on the label. You can try and find out by looking at the serving size in grams versus how many grams of protein you get in that serving. That is, if the label is honest. WPC is a decent choice if cost is a major issue; however, in today’s world you can find a quality whey isolate without going broke. When looking at a nutrition label, ingredi- ents are listed in order of amount found in the product. Meaning, the product will contain more of the first ingredient listed than the following ingredients, and so on. In a protein formulation that does not rely on a proprietary blend, we know that it’s mostly WPC followed by WPI and then soy protein and flavor, etc. 92 APRIL 2017 | ironmanmagazine.com Ingredients: Whey protein concentrate, whey protein isolate, soy protein, natural and artificial flavors, sugar, sodium, xanthan gum. With a proprietary blend, however, manu- facturers can throw parentheses around the ingredients and circumvent the spirit of these labeling laws. The blend is listed first as the largest ingredient by volume, but the items in the parentheses are not. The product in the example below could potentially contain more maltodextrin than hydrolyzed whey, but that’s hard to detect from the label. Ingredients: Super-Duper Whey Blend (whey protein concentrate, hydrolyzed whey, powdered milk), natural and artificial flavors, maltodextrin, sucralose, xanthan gum Tony: Will intermittent fasting slow down my muscle gains? If used in conjunction with a nootropic/preworkout, will it help clear brain fog and curb appetite? Intermittent fasting is definitely misunder- stood in the realm of fitness and bodybuild- ing. The human body is extremely efficient, and “fasting for intermittent periods” will not catabolize muscle tissue. It could, however, slow down lean-tissue gains depending on whether the person is eating the neces- sary calories (over his maintenance intake amount) during his feeding window. In an- swer to the second component of the ques- tion, there are many different thermogenic and nootropic supplements that suppress appetite and increase focus. So the answer would be: yes, in theory. That said, we per- sonally do not perform resistance training in a fasted state.