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Monday, 11 August 2014

IIFYM- Can you eat what you want and still lose weight?

Over the past couple of months I have been using IIFYM- If It Fits Your Macros. This is a form of flexible dieting which I love. I love it because if I want to have bar of chocolate or go out with my friends for a meal I can do so without having to worry about gaining weight and ruining my hard work. But there is a few things you need to know first:-

So what is IIFYM?

It is simply eating to meet your macronutrient needs. Your macronutrients consist of your carbohydrates, protein and fats. These three macronutritents all play essential roles in the human body.  With IIFYM you don't have to eat at certain times, eat a set amount of meals etc, you just have to try hit your macros consistently each day to reap the benefits. You can eat whatever foods you like to hit these macro targets each day.

Does this mean that I can eat what I want and still lose weight?

Good luck if you think you can hit you targets by just eating chips, chocolate etc (I have tried). You still need you staples in order to hit your macros e.g. meat, green vegetables, eggs etc. If you have room for the odd junk food snack go for it but you won't hit your targets by eating all the junk foods you want everyday. Fibre is another issue -you need to be eating good quality foods. If you are hitting your macros by eating foods like chips, crisps etc I promise you, you won't feel great.

So what are the benefits?

It is flexible eating. You don't have to eat a set amount of meals a day, you don't have to eat every two hours, you don't have to eat within a certain time pre or post workout. You can skip breakfast if you want. If you are having a meal out with friends in the evening you can fit it into your diet by just sticking to protein and veggies throughout the day so that you don't go over your carb and fat intake and then have the meal you want when out with friends. If you are craving something you can have it but make sure that for your other meals you don't go over your carbs/fat intake. It just means your meals are that bit more exciting, you can work around your social life and still keep on track. 

How do I calculate my Macros?

Copy this link for a free IIFYM calculator and calculate what your macro targets should be and try to consistently meet those. It is not as easy as you think but after a few days you start to see what macros you lack in or eat too much of. 

My Fitness Pal App

I insert my macro targets into My Fitness Pal app so I can keep on track each day and know if certain foods have too high fat/carb intake.