DNP and Diet Composition for Bodybuilders and Athletes



DNP does not interact directly with any macro- or micronutrients, and so, theoretically, can be used in conjunction with any diet plan imaginable.


Virtually all bodybuilders and athletes who use DNP, however, do so with the same goal: rapid fat loss, with minimal catabolism of muscle protein.  For these athletes, a few key points are essential.




Although DNP is surprisingly protein-sparing, the best way to spare muscle protein is also the most obvious way—namely, to eat enough of it.

Athletes should be sure to consume at least 1 to 1.5 grams of protein per pound (= 2 to 3 grams per kg) of bodyweight, regardless of the other particulars of their diet.





As mentioned on the workout page, muscle glycogen depletion shifts the body’s metabolic balance toward lipolysis (fat burning).  Therefore, preparatory glycogen depletion—done before DNP supplementation is begun—is highly advisable, especially for athletes who are already lean.


If glycogen is depleted:

In this case, a low-carbohydrate diet will produce maximum fat loss, with the bonus of causing minimal physical discomfort (see below).  If carbohydrate cravings occur, stimulants with an appetite-suppressant effect, such as ephedrine or caffeine, may be helpful in combating them.

– For athletes with substantial experience in low-carbohydrate dieting, these cravings may be less intense, or even absent altogether.

– Carbohydrate cravings that persist through the use of stimulants may be a sign that liver glycogen is depleted.  In this case, consuming 5 to 15 grams of fructose—which will refill liver glycogen without affecting muscle glycogen—should reduce the intensity of the cravings.  Powdered fructose, which can be added to any drink as a sweetener, is ideal.  If this is not available, the next-best option is apples or pears, which have the highest ratio of fructose to glucose of all common fruits.


If glycogen is not depleted:

In this case, the body’s metabolic balance is not shifted as far toward lipolysis (fat burning).  As a result, greater metabolism of both carbohydrates and protein will occur by default.

– If glycogen is not depleted, the athlete’s diet should not be too low in carbohydrates.  If significant glycogen remains in muscle tissue, a carbohydrate intake of less than approximately 1 g/kg (about 0.5 g/lb) of bodyweight may place the athlete at risk for protein catabolism.  In this case the body may also deplete blood glucose, placing the athlete at risk for hypoglycemia as well.

– Sufficient protein (see above) will mostly guard against muscle loss, provided that a minimum of carbohydrate is consumed as described above.

– Carbohydrate should come mostly from high-glycemic-index (“slow carb”) foods.  This will help the athlete avoid dangerous swings in blood glucose levels as well as the discomfort of excessive heat wasting (see below).




Apart from the considerations above, DNP allows considerable flexibility in the athlete’s diet.  Among the other factors to be considered, perhaps the most important is DNP’s “heat wasting” effect.


As described on the chemistry page, DNP does not disrupt glucose metabolism; instead, it causes much of the energy from glucose to be thrown off as heat.  As a result, any rapid infusion of glucose into cells will accelerate the rate of heat wasting.  Simply put, the consumption of sugars or other “fast” carbohydrates (white rice, refined flour, etc.) will raise heat output significantly.


At lower doses of DNP, then, there are no inherent restrictions on the athlete’s carbohydrate consumption, other than the athlete’s own ability to tolerate the extra heat, sweating, and discomfort.  At higher doses, on the other hand, carbohydrate consumption should be monitored carefully to mitigate the risk of hyperthermia.



Dosing for DNP is discussed here.


Learn about the chemistry and action of DNP here.


Information on stacking DNP with other fat burners is here.


Click here to read more about DNP and calorie consumption.


Read about workouts to preserve lean mass here.