All valid points but buried deep in the monster tater thread I mentioned something that's perhaps worth repeating here..
See, one 'method' and I don't remember the name of it as such but I tried it myself years ago and it does work, is a deliberate yo-yo effect where you starve yourself for a week, then stuff yourself for a week, then starve again, and so on, for 4 to 6 weeks.
Because even without lifting any weights you put muscle mass on during the over-eating phase (believed due to testosterone production among other things), and during the starving phase you lose muscle - but you lose more fat.
The result is a net gain of lean muscle tissue and a net loss of body fat.
Yes, the "impossible" Holy Grail.
Would I recommend it as a long term thing? No, as most people DO have the willpower to eat too much, virtually doubling their calories, while very few people have the willpower to halve their calories for a whole week...
Doing that yo-yo you do burn fat, and you do lose muscle, and you do gain fat, and you do gain muscle. The secret is how the net result is more muscle, less fat.
So to me it's no biggie if I lose some lean mass, as it's a short-term hack to dig into my belly fat and I know with some whey protein and German volume training I can rebuild that.
The alternative is an ongoing calorie deficit that could last for months, with the very real possibility of fat creeping on, rather than off.
After all, that's how I got this belly in the first place
So yeah, some short-term extremism to push things back a bit is no problem. The sense of control is a pleasant change from just drifting along 'doing the right things' while your belly grows ever bigger.
Does that mean we're following a cult? We're the Potato People?
For me at least, I know I can rebuild muscle rapidly. If anything I'm deliberately smaller than I could be, as to maintain mass I used to eat like a pig, always seeking out protein 6X a day and all that.
I can't be asked now, I just want to get rid of this belly.