This post was written by our friends over at Stronger U, a community-driven, online nutrition coaching program that services thousands of clients across 25+ countries. You can find more information about their nutrition programs at www.strongerufit.com.
One of the hottest areas of nutrition research these days is around flexible dieting, or “counting macros” as the way to manage weight and body composition. At Stronger U, we’ve seen thousands of successful clients embrace this strategy, with our own unique spin on it of course 😃. Our friends at FlapJacked, who make “macro-friendly” versions of pancakes, muffins, cookies and more have asked us to give our thoughts around flexible dieting and why so many people are embracing it to help manage their weight.
First, let’s start out with the basics of weight management - to lose weight you must enter into a caloric deficit either through eating less, burning calories via exercise, or both. Ultimately, if you are eating the right amount of calories for your goal, you will lose weight. At Stronger U, we like to go a step further.
“Macros” are what make up any food and we are all familiar with them – carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. Each of these macros have a set amount of calories per gram:
Carbohydrates: 4 calories per gram Protein: 4 calories per gram Fat: 9 calories per gram
Basing a diet plan around macronutrients instead of calories can help you eat within boundaries, but without restrictions. This way of eating can be applied to any preference of food or style and therefore is literally for anyone. Vegans, vegetarians, paleo, someone who likes a slice of pizza every Friday night, those with a sweet tooth, and any variation of eater you can dream up.
Pizza? Sweets? Yup! Now don’t get us wrong, we aren’t saying go out and eat pizza every day, this is where the ‘boundaries’ piece comes into play but it is also the reason so many clients have success with flexible dieting and Stronger U.
photo credit: Stronger U
Macros help guide clients to make better choices in terms of food quality, but doesn’t restrict any food.
What we mean is this; your body can’t distinguish if it the carb source being digested is from a carrot or a gummy bear or the protein source is chicken or pork or the fat source is olive oil or mayonnaise. This may be an unpopular statement, but it is an absolutely irrefutable scientific fact when we are talking strictly weight loss. Again, this isn’t a free-for-all ice cream and pizza diet (we put a lot of emphasis on food quality and nutrient dense foods), but if a client wants to plan a scoop of ice cream on a summer night, they can!
Why does this matter? ADHERENCE. We see that clients are less likely to revert back to poor eating habits because they are able to enjoy the foods they love but learn to eat them within the boundaries of a macronutrient plan.
Another reason so many are seeing success through online nutrition programs like Stronger U has nothing to do with food. That thing is ACCOUNTABILITY. Our coaches tailor a program based on a clients’ goals, but we don’t stop there. Throughout the entire program a client has virtually unlimited access to their coach. Have a question, concern, success story, or just want to say hey? A client can text, call, video conference, e-mail, or use any favorite form of communication to talk to their coach at any time during the day (our coaches do sleep 😃). Coaches also reach out to encourage and ensure clients are comfortable and have all the knowledge they need to not only succeed while on Stronger U’s program, but after they decide to leave. Additionally, Stronger U members are part of a private Facebook group, where they are able to ask and answer questions about the program, share favorite macro-friendly meals and snacks (like FlapJacked!), and find solidarity when and where they need it most.
The goal of all this isn’t into help you in a short window of time, we want you to leave with a refreshed outlook on food and realize you don’t need to enter some crazy, restrictive crash diet to succeed. You need guidance on how many macronutrients to consume, adhere to the plan, and support to ensure success!
If you’re looking to improve your body composition and general performance, flexible dieting through a community like Stronger U might be the right approach for you.
Eat what you love and get the body you deserve!
About Stronger U
Our nutritional approach is based on the idea of complete food freedom. We believe in boundaries, not restrictions, so there are no foods that are off limits and there is no food guilt at all; we call this “Structured Flexibility”. Our plans are individualized based on your specific goals and can be followed regardless of food preference or dietary restrictions. Whether your goal is to be healthier, improve body composition, or perform your best, our plans can be custom-tailored to your needs. We never take the cookie-cutter approach and realize no two people are the same, so no two programs will ever be the same. The Stronger U community stretches around the globe and is composed of people of all ages and everyone from everyday people who don’t workout at all, all the way up to professional athletes. Our community is a collection of people who are here for a common goal and it’s a goal we're extremely passionate about. To improve your quality of life. For more information, please visit www.strongerufit.com.
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April 28, 2017
Absolutely love Stronger U. I have had great success with both bulking and cutting using flexible dieting under the guidance of their amazing coaches. Highly recommend to everybody looking to get healthy
I love Stronger U and I LOVE my Saturday morning double chocolate Mighty Muffin, before I go workout!!!
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