Zach Even-Esh

Nate Miyaki Intermittent FEAST QnA – Part I

“The Principal Food for Man is Pure Air”

– George Hackenschmidt, The Russian Lion

Z: Nate – Dog! Thanks for hooking up The Underground Strength Nation with your time. I love what you’re doing and wanna spread some of your ass kickin’ nutrition knowledge.

We’re all about minimalist training here at Underground Strength — You have a similar approach with nutrition. For those who have not heard of you, please give us a lil’ insight.

Nate: Zach, I’m The People’s Nutrition Educator. Who hasn’t heard of me? Totally kidding, my mom still doesn’t quite know what I do for a living.

Yeah man, I can tell we’ve both been heavily influenced by the great Bruce Lee, who once said, ” Gung fu is based on simplicity; all techniques are stripped down to their essential purpose without wastage or ornamentation, and everything becomes the straightest, most logical simplicity of common sense.”

Here’s the truth. A large percentage of the health & fitness industry purposely over-complicates things in order to sell you a bunch of bullsh*t you don’t really need. As a result, many advanced athletes are just as information overloaded, and suffering from paralysis by analysis, as the complete beginner looking for an efficient way to get started. I can’t stand for such uselessness.

Getting results is simple in theory (not easy in application). Over-complication comes from refusing to put consistent effort into the basics that produce results; instead searching for an easier way, a quick fix, or a miracle cure to compensate.

I don’t know. I’ve always been more of a grinder than a magician. Tricks are for kids, right?

So I’m with you man. My mission is to cut through the fluff so people can start getting results.

Z: Right on. Simple is the way. I never want to go back to my days of eating as a slave to the clock, getting in 6 meals every day. It made me nuts when I came to the realization that eating won’t fit my lifestyle after living the easy college life and Mom did my laundry!

Can you give us a simple summary of your nutrition approach?

Nate: I’ve always looked at the fat slashing, muscle building, health-enhancing processes in terms of a hierarchy of importance. All topics fall under 3 broad categories.

Step #1 – Optimize Food Choices

Serge Nubret once said, “every sickness comes from food.” I believe that man. A lot of our most debilitating diseases — including advanced muffin-top syndrome — are a direct result of poor food choices.

Moving away from modern Y2K eating by cutting out processed, man-made foods; and returning to our evolutionary or cultural pasts by eating more real, natural foods (wild animals and plants) will take you
80% of the way in achieving your goals, automatically, without all of the over-complication, confusion, and misinformation in the health & fitness industry.

“Cut da crap and get results. It really is that simple.”

I like templates for simplification here.

So we use the Paleo/caveman-style diet for certain demographics.

I also use The Traditional Japanese Village Diet for more athletic demographics. Now, I’m not trying to get everyone to sing, “I think I’m turning Japanese”. It is just an easy educational template to remember. It is basically a Paleo-style diet with the addition of a select few starch foods (root vegetables and white rice) to support the unique demands of anaerobic training.

That’s about it in a nut sack. Mine is 100% Paleo-friendly by the way, and although small, it’s potent.

Z: What’s the next step towards dialing in your nutrition approach?

Nate: Step #2 — Find a Sustainable Diet Structure

Choosing the appropriate meal frequency and food distribution pattern — FOR YOU — is about making
your plan as realistic and functional as possible. Enough research has come out now to prove there is no
one Right Way.

The “best” structure is simply the one that allows you to most consistently stick with your plan.

Modern fitness approaches (eat 6 small meals every 2 hours, starve at night, wanting to gnaw off your
significant other’s arm, etc.) can work great, as many professional bodybuilders and fitness competitors
have proven, and often write about in the magazines. Most competitive bodybuilders still eat this way. I
have followed such plans myself with great results. I have pictures with a fake tan and a dong thong to
prove it.

But my main problem with these plans is that they are completely impractical for most trying to make a living in the real world — managing a career outside of fitness, taking care of a family, not wanting to live like a social hermit, etc. — and are based more on spandex tradition rather than scientific necessity. That’s why so many competitors yo-yo, and the majority of the rest of the population never get started.

There are equally effective alternatives. I believe our hunter-gatherer evolutionary past again provides us with clues.

Human beings evolved on a fasting and feeding cycle.

We spent the majority of our existence fasting or eating lighter during the day while actively tracking, hunting, and gathering our food. We spent the evening relaxing and feasting on the majority, if not all, of our daily food intake.

You should do the exact same thing if you want to make your diet as easy as possible.

“Go with, not against, your nature.”


Part II Will be Added Soon….

Any questions or comments for Nate, please drop em’ below and if we have enough questions we will crank a Part III!

You can also check out Nate’s ‘Intermittent FEAST’ Nutrition Guide HERE

Category: Articles, muscle building, Nutrition, old school strength, Q & A Tags: , , , , , , .

24 Responses to Nate Miyaki Intermittent FEAST QnA – Part I

  1. James says:

    Hi Nate, just wanted to get your thoughts on dairy products (2% cottage cheese, whole milk and cheese etc) Thanks sir

  2. Dustin W. says:

    How does your template differ from the Warrior diet? I have evolved my own variation to the Warrior Diet. Finding what works with me, and the afternoon light eat to the night feast works great. Either I will fast through the morning or toss in a can of tuna or greens shake with BCAA and glutamine.
    Which leds to Q2-supplements? I take unflavored BCAA and glutamine with my greens. Also, multi, vit C, vit D, Calcium, Mg, K and Omega 3.

    • Nate Miyaki says:

      Hey Dustin, Hofmekler is one of my big influences for sure. Eat lighter during the day, eat the biggest meal at night. He has another great book where he gets more into the science and technical aspects of that.

      But I would say the biggest difference is I integrate more of my bodybuilding and Sports Nutrition background for more advanced athletes and higher-level goals, meaning I get in there and really get into calorie and macronutrient calculations based on individual goals. So if you want to get to 4% body fat for example, its more than just diet structure, you really have to hit certain numbers and make refinements based on progress. Make sense?

  3. Nate Miyaki says:

    What’s up James? Yeah, I think foods to avoid generally fall under two broad groups. #1 consists of foods that I think most coaches would agree should be avoided (HFCS, sugar, trans fats, rancid beaver, etc.). #2 are foods that are more debatable, with athletes and coaches on both sides of the fence. Dairy falls under that second category. Some include it and do fine, others swear that eliminating it was the key to success.

    Personally, due to Asian bias, Loren Cordain’s research, and personal experience (along with a good % of my clients), I lean towards cutting dairy.

    But the best advice FOR YOU, is to test and assess in the real world. Cut it out for 2 weeks and see how you look, feel, and perform. Add it back in and do the same. Regardless of any debate, this strategy will allow you to find what works best for you. Cool my brother?

    • James says:

      Absolutely, much appreciated Nate. To be honest, I’ve been kicking the tyres with cutting out all dairy but have read varying reports. Having seen this will give it a spin for a couple of weeks, many thanks again

      • Nate Miyaki says:

        No problem man. Give it a shot and see what happens. I can only tell you personally that a lot of GI distress went away when I cut it out. Also, stubborn fat around da midsection went away too.

        • James says:

          The stubborn midsection fat is the one I’ve been having a pain in the butt shifting. Good to know Nate, looking forward to the next installment.

          Thanks mate

  4. Nick M says:

    I really liked your recent articles about intermittent fasting in the new Men’s Fitness and Muscle and Fitness. I cut them out and they are my go to diet. I’ve read most of your articles on Tnation also, great work.

  5. Nick M says:

    Also Nate, was Ori Hofmeklers diet an influential factor on your first exposure to intermittent fasting-feasting? That was really my first introduction to this method of eating.

    • Nate Miyaki says:

      Yeah Nick, but it was not the Warrior Diet. Hofmekler wrote a much better and more technical book regarding the fast/feed cycle called Maximum Muscle/Minimum Fat. His best work in my opinion.

  6. Gabri says:

    Hey Nate!

    I love your articles from jasonferruggia’s blog and t-nation, and i really like your point of view about dieting. I don’t like either making things more conplicated than they have to be.

    I follow an 16/8 intermittent fasting approach. I’m getting stronger because of my training and i feel my body wants to gain weight (i keep being hungry even after eating a lot, maybe i need more carbs..). I have always been lean no matter what i ate, but i have problems with my stomach. It is very delicate. I’m trying to improve my gut health, but i don’t know what to do!

    I already eat many veggies, meat, fish, i drink a lot of water… But the problem is that many foods make me feel sick (many legumes, lactose, sweets…)

    So here are my two questions for you.

    What should i do to improve my gut health?? (Veggies juice? Probiotics?)

    What can i add to my meals to gain weight (i’m pretty lean at 200pounds and 6’3″) while being healthy?? Maybe rice?

    I hope you can answer my questions, you’re the best Nate, keep working hard!!

  7. Nate Miyaki says:

    Hey Gabri, right on man, I appreciate the support.

    I do not think you necessarily have problems with your gut. I just think your gut does not like sh*tty foods. Just kidding, but not really.

    See, that is why I like the Paleo & Japanese Village Diets as templates, it helps people eliminate foods that are problematic for human digestion, without getting overly technical in the education process.

    So things like high amounts of fructose (in sweets) can ferment in the gut and lead to gas and bloating, lectins and legumes can be hard on the G.I. tract and can inhibit protein and mineral absorption, lactose allergy leads to all kinds of GI distress, including bloating and milk farts. You know what I am talking about baby. anti-nutrients in most cereal grains can inhibit mineral absorption and lead to leaky guy syndrome, etc.

    So in many ways, gut health is more about what you do NOT eat than about what you do.

    When strength training and trying to gain mass, I think you need to bump up the starchy carbs to refill glycogen stores, create an anabolic environment, and support your training. But you got to keep the problematic compounds out. My favorite food choices for that are white rice and any potatoes (regular, Russet, sweet potato, red potato, yams, gold, etc.)

    • Gabri says:

      i first want to thank you for answering my question, it’s amazing to see guys as successful as you or Zach have the time to help their fans disinterestedly. If i ever become famous or as successful as you, i will share my time and my passion with everybody who is really interested!

      About what you said, everything makes total sense! I don’t really know about the US, but here in Spain it is very common to eat a lot of legumes, dairy, sweets, and as you said, shitty food. That makes it complicated to eat healthy, but i’m going to become dead serious about my health, because it’s not only bloating and farts, sometimes i feel really bad and with low energy….

      One last question, what do you think it is the best way to include those potatoes and rice? I’m talking about recipes. Does your new book talk also about recipes?

      You are really helping me Nate, thank you a lot!

      • Nate Miyaki says:

        Hahaha Gabri, I am only moderately successful and far from famous. But dude if you find something you love doing, you will want to share that passion with anyone who will listen. So its my pleasure brother.

        I think the hard part is that some of these foods that can be so problematic for digestion and energy are often marketed as health foods, which can make it confusing.

        With potatoes I like to peel the skin and the boil them until soft. That way you can have a bunch ready to go for convenience.

        Rice, get yourself a rice cooker brother. Its the only way to go. Set everything up, press the on button, and then just go about the rest of your night and wait for it to be done. With rice, I like to do some stir fries. Cut up a bunch of different vegetables, add some meats, and then throw it all over rice.

        I am far from the food network brother, just simple things for a simple guy. I do have some simple instructions in the bonus book for the product, but I do not want to lie and say its gourmet recipes. I also have a few cooking videos up on da YouTube channel for reference. I will try to get more going. Cool?

        • Gabri says:

          Thanks a lot Nate!

          I will try what you told me, and i appreciate your sincerity. Your book gotta be awesome, i can´t wait to read!

          You’re the best Nate!

  8. Galo Guerrero says:

    Hey Nate, reading the article you state you use the traditional Japanese village diet to support demands of anaerobic training. I’m an amateur boxer, would your intermittent feast nutrition guide be helpful or a guideline of what to eat or when to eat to support the demands of boxing as I am cutting weight. Look forward to your answer and thanks for your time.

    • admin says:

      Nate – Galo trains with us at The Underground. We need to dial in his nutrition, as of now, he eats like a high school kid, cereal for breakfast, etc.

      I think he will be an animal if we dial him in!

      • Nate Miyaki says:

        Yeah Galo, you can not just eat like a normal high school kid. You are an athlete, you have to eat like an athlete. You have to eat to support your training and to give yourself every possible edge in the ring.

        Food quality is critical for weight cutting athletes, because you have to give your body all of the nutrients it needs while being in the calorie deficit necessary for weight/fat loss. that means no room for crap or non-functional foods.

    • Nate Miyaki says:

      Hey Galo,

      Yeah man, I think it would be helpful. We are living in the popularity of Low Carb Diets/da Low Carb Era, but they are not always appropriate for athletic demographics. I would stay tuned for part II of this interview because me and Zach go into the details of that.

      But yeah, I have helped several combat sport guys like MMA guys and they are loving the diet approach.

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Zach Even-Esh is an Author, Founder of The Underground Strength Gym & Creator of The Underground Strength Coach Certification.

Zach's inspiration in training comes from the Golden Era of Bodybuilding & Days of Old School Strength. His mission is to help You kick ass & take names in Life AND Lifting without the hype, fancy fads or gimmicks. Zach's Commitment To Your Success Is Unmatched. He Knows What It's Like To Go From A Weakling To An Unstoppable BEAST In Charge Of His Life, Business & Destiny. Zach Made It Happen Through The Iron and Now it's Your Turn!

Zach Even-Esh