The principles of the Bulletproof Lifestyle are relatively simple. Naturally, they have been underpinned by scientific insights. For this scientific substantiation, I would like to refer to the book ‘The Bulletproof Diet’ and the blog by Dave Asprey, The Bulletproof Executive.
You can also download our e-book about the Bulletproof Lifestyle and learn about the benefits it has on: easy weight control, slowing down the ageing process, supporting your immune system, improving your mental performance.
Food, sleep, exercise
The Bulletproof Lifestyle can be summarized in 9 principles:
- Eat lots of fat and few carbs
- Eat fat in the morning and carbs in the evening
- Bulletproof Intermittent Fasting
- Bulletproof Protein Fasting
- Avoid toxic substances
- Prepare your food without damaging it
- Use the right supplements
- Make sure you have a good night’s sleep
- Train less for more muscle
1. Eat lots of fat and few carbs
The Bulletproof diet is a low carb diet. Your body uses fat as a primary fuel source. An important advantage is that your blood sugar level remains constant and your energy level too. It is a cyclical Ketogenic Diet with a re-feed day once a week in which you eat up to 300 grams of carbs. You should eat good carbs such as sweet potatoes or pumpkins. Women are more sensitive, and it is recommended they have a re-feed day twice a week. It is easiest to combine this re-feed day with your protein-free day each week. (Bulletproof Protein Fasting).
In the Bulletproof diet you apply the following ratios concerning calorie intake:
- 50-70% fat
- 20% protein
- 5% carbs
Read more about the dietary advice of the Bulletproof Diet.
2. Eat fat in the morning and carbs in the evening
Your brains use glucose while you are sleeping. This is why it is advised to consume carbs as your final food intake of the day. You can have some fruit, preferably berries. Have a bowl of blueberries, for example. Fruit lowers your blood pressure, which makes it difficult to start the day full of energy.
3. Bulletproof Intermittent Fasting
Bulletproof intermittent fasting is a protocol under which you limit the time of day in which you eat to six hours (eating window). During the other 18 hours, you eat nothing: you are fasting. This helps to burn fat, prevent cancer, develop muscle and boost immunity.
The easiest way to achieve intermittent fasting is skipping breakfast. This can be difficult for many people. You can, therefore, have Bulletproof coffee for breakfast in the Bulletproof intermittent fasting protocol. Your body will thereby remain in a state of fasting while you will not get hungry.
Bulletproof coffee consists of coffee, grass-fed butter and MCT oil. MCT oil is a derivate of coconut oil. Bulletproof coffee has many advantages:
- Caffeine gives you energy and focus and has many advantages for your (mental) health.
- MCT oil stimulates the growth of bacteria found in lean people (bacteroidetes).
- MCT oil helps your body to stay in a state of ketosis (fat burning) even if you have eaten carbs the previous evening. MCT oil and Brain Octane are many times more powerful than coconut oil.
- Butter helps you ingest 3 times as many antioxidants from your coffee than milk. Also, butter contains acid that can help repair your intestine and decrease inflammations in the brain.
With Bulletproof coffee in the morning, you will quickly reach a mild form of ketosis, which makes you sharper and less hungry.
4. Bulletproof Protein Fasting
Autophagy is the process by which your cells clean up toxins and convert these into energy. It helps you to stay young. Autophagy is stimulated by cutting out protein once a week. This forces your cells to find ways to get protein, and this activates the cleaning of your cells. Eat less than 15 grams of protein during a day of protein fasting. It may be helpful to use a food tracker like MyFitness Pal (free website or app) to see which foods contain protein. You will be surprised to learn how often you still consume protein without realizing!
5. Avoid toxic substances
An important building block of the Bulletproof diet is the avoidance of toxic substances (anti-nutrients). The standard Western diet is full of anti-nutrients that adversely affect your performance. These include:
- mycotoxins (toxic substances produced by fungi)
The Bulletproof Diet Roadmap contains an overview of nutrients to show you which are safe to eat (green), which are ‘suspicious’ (yellow) or toxic (orange). Remove these latter categories from your diet and observe the effect. Every individual reacts differently to food. You can test your reactions by choosing food from the green category first and then adding suspicious foods to your diet one by one.
6. Prepare your food without damaging it
An important part of the Bulletproof lifestyle is reducing inflammations in your body. One factor that can influence this is the preparation of food. Heating can be damaging to many substances. Omega 3 and 6, for example, can oxidize as a result of too much heat. Many foods are best eaten raw or lightly heated, such as protein. Boiling meat prevents oxidation. This is not the tastiest cooking method, but great for use in soups. The main principle is never to apply more heat than necessary. Vegetables should be steamed rather than cooked. Always make sure to discard the cooking liquid after cooking vegetables as it contains anti-nutrients.
Everybody likes a barbecue, but it is inadvisable to roast food on direct fire. The indirect method can be as tasty and is much healthier. Deep-frying is the worst method to prepare food. The Bulletproof diet discourages the use of microwaves.
7. Use the right supplements
A healthy diet contains all the micronutrients you need. However, it is not always easy to consume the right nutrients. That is why it is useful to choose supplements to help you with that. Many people think a multivitamin will suffice. Multivitamins often contain the wrong proportions of vitamins (too many cheap and too few expensive vitamins). Moreover, it is impossible to get the correct amount in a pill. Dave Asprey created an overview of Bulletproof supplements.
8. Make sure you have a good night’s sleep
Sleep is the basis for a good performance during the day. You can alter your diet and exercise all you want, but if you don’t recover at night, it will not work. We have written several articles with tips for better sleep. These relate to your meal times, supplements and tools to help you sleep, such as the Sleep Induction Mat and the avoidance of blue light with the ZenTech light filters for your smartphone and tablet.
9. Train less for more muscle
Too much exercise results in a body that is stressed out, which in turn has adverse consequences. The idea behind the Bulletproof lifestyle is to reach a state of top performance, in which you feel good and energetic while spending as little time as possible doing exercise.
Strength training is the best exercise. It increases your muscle mass, increases your insulin sensitivity, activates your metabolism and boosts testosterone and growth hormone levels. Combine strength training twice a week with one high-intensity interval session. The latter is good for heart and lungs and stimulates the production of the growth hormone (HGH). HGH improves your performance and slows down the ageing process.
The main strength training exercises are:
- seated row
- chest press
- pull down
- overhead press
- leg press
Read more about Bulletproof exercise.