Vince Gironda was well known for his belief in supplementing the diet of the bodybuilder, simply because during modern times, over farming stripped the nutrients from the natural foods that we eat and that were supposed to provide these nutrients.

The fact that nutrient content of food is decreasing has detrimental effect on our health, especially on our endocrine system. With the combination of stress, our endocrine systems are in high demand and are soon exhausted, leading to the variety of metabolic disorders we face in these present times…. diabetes, cancer, cardiovascular disease, the list goes on and on.

For this reason alone, Vince recommended that even the average person should adopt supplementation of at least a basic daily vitamin and mineral regime. Now when we talk about athletes and specifically bodybuilders, our bodies are under constant stress, not just from our daily lives, but due to the constant bombardment of stress we subject our muscles to. The bodies need for precious nutrients is therefore elevated.

For these reasons then, Vince obviously recommended a more substantial supplement program for bodybuilders.

Attaining Maximum Definition

Taken the above into consideration, the bodybuilder that is aiming to achieve top physical condition requires that subcutaneous fat be stripped from his or her body, to be able to display his or her muscular development.

In order to acquire this look, Vince recommended his infamous Maximum Definition Diet, otherwise called the Steak and Eggs Diet, or the Steak and Water Diet in his booklet Definition. Similarly, he recommended this diet in his booklet, Vince Gironda’s 6 week Abdominal Course.

On top of this diet, Vince recommended the use of Kelp, to optimize ones endocrine system which would increase the metabolism and allow fat to be stripped off the body.

Kelp

One could say that Kelp was Vince Gironda’s secret weapon. Vince was a big believer in the use of Kelp for several reasons. Here is what Vince had to say about Kelp:

Kelp contains more trace elements and iodine than any land vegetation. During erosion these vital minerals and nutrients are effaced from the soil leaving some 20 – 24 minerals. The ocean (No other source) contains all 44 minerals and trace complements!

Some 20 vital minerals have literally been washed from our soil. These trace minerals have been found highly effective in the treatment of arthritis, bursitis, strained ligaments, tendons and cartilage, skin dryness, under-elasticity and loss of hair. Many cases of infant stage arthritis have been halted by administering sea water (purified) to the daily diet. Dosages tested have been: 1 – 2 oz. per serving, 3—4 times per day. Results manifest within a period of 3 – 6 months.

Now that these amazing findings have come to light the question is, “How can we supplement these ingredients to our diet without having to drink gallons of the stuff each week?”

The answer is kelp. Ocean kelp, due to its amoebic activity, absorbs all of the ocean’s elements (trace minerals and nutrients) and locks them in. Tremendous amounts of iodine (thyroid food) are stored in this treasure chest of nutrients. Kelp tablets have been formulated to provide these elements in a convenient way. They are made from pure, cleaned ocean kelp and sea lettuce (Dulse) powders compressed at low temperatures to maintain all naturally occurring elements. The iodine content of kelp is higher than that of any other food!

Man lives under stress conditions. We are stress-oriented. Unlike early man our stress comes in greater variety. There is a remarkable amount of evidence that “Modern Stress” subtly changes our metabolism into an unbalanced condition. The thyroid gland, whose primary function is to maintain a balanced metabolism, takes a beating under stress. Just look at all of the people on thyroid drugs! Thyroxin is the hormone excreted from the thyroid that governs the metabolic balance.

Thyroid drugs (i.e., Thyroxin®, Cytomel®, Synthroid®, etc.) do the job the thyroid should be doing; they are replacing the natural flow of organic thyroxin, They can’t heal the gland, only “hype” it. Hypothyroidism is a condition of the thyroid gland when it is under-producing the hormone thyroxin.

This common condition has many far-reaching effects:

  • Amount and quality of hair
  • In infants the mind or body can become dwarfed (Cretinism).
  • Weakness and exhaustion
  • Lessened mental capacity
  • Lack of concentration
  • Low body temperature
  • Skin dryness
  • Loss of hair
  • Craving for carbohydrates (especially sweets)

Due to the tests and theories available, I do feel there is a definite decline in our output of thyroxin whether or not the thyroid gland is healthy.

Therefore, it would appear that a “thyroid- feeding” supplement would be a desirable addition to the daily diet.

Once again, iodine is the only element that will properly nourish the thyroid, and sea kelp is the richest source of the element iodine. Remember, we are talking about food iodine — not synthetic (which is less effective than drugs). It is interesting to note here that these dangerous drugs are usually administered only after tests show the thyroid in marked decline, which is often too late!

What Science says about Kelp and Iodine in our Diet

Vince’s faith on Kelp has a strong scientific backing. Kelp is considered a superfood nowadays. Some studies have suggested that kelp may also have a powerful effect on weight loss and obesity, confirming Vince’s belief that Kelp was excellent for stripping fat off the body. The natural fiber alginate found in kelp acts as a fat blocker, stopping the absorption of fat in the gut. In 2010, researchers found that alginate, the soluble fibre substance in sea kelp, was better at preventing fat absorption than most over-the-counter slimming treatments in laboratory trials. As a food additive, it may be used to reduce fat absorption and thus obesity.

Kelp is a superfood rich vitamins and nutrients, including vitamin K, vitamin A, calcium, iron and magnesium. However, as Vince suggested, what this sea superfood really excels at is its iodine content. In fact, it’s one of the best natural sources of iodine there is, giving it superhero hormone-balancing capabilities. The mineral iodine plays a crucial role in producing thyroid hormones, managing the metabolism, and for example, aids the female body in a healthy pregnancy. The most common disorder associated with decreased iodine is thyroid disorders. But because of its high concentration of iodine, Kelp has been used to treat goiter, an enlargement of the thyroid gland caused by a lack of iodine, since medieval times. Further, a deficiency in this vital mineral may play a part in diseases and disorders such as polycystic ovarian disease, prostate disorders, autoimmune diseases and diabetes.

Since diet is the exclusive source of the human body’s iodine content, it’s important to pay attention to foods high in this mineral. Research has also shown that kelp can possess powerful cancer-fighting capabilities, particularly against breast and colon cancer. Its high levels of antioxidants not only fight free radicals, but can aid people with diabetes and act as a powerful anti-inflammatory agent.

Conclusions

Science has proven Kelp to be quite the beneficial superfood and it may just be the supplement you need. Further, iodine is absolutely necessary for bodybuilders, especially those struggling to rid themselves of that last bit of subcutaneous fat. So if you’re on the Maximum Definition Diet, don’t skip the Kelp !

References

  1. https://www.healthline.com/health/food-nutrition/ways-to-eat-kelp-or-seaweed#health-benefits-of-kelp
  2. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kelp
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