Why Flexible Dieting For Weight Loss Works

Flexible dieting for weight loss is the best way to lose weight while still eating your favorite foods.

Do you think of “good foods” being broccoli, salads, and chicken?

While all of the “bad foods” or foods that are off limits somehow always end up being all of the foods you love.

Better get ready to suffer and incredibly dislike your diet if you are going to lose weight.

I am here to tell you that doesn’t have to be the case.

This is where flexible dieting for weight loss comes into play.

What if I told you that you can still eat your favorite foods and still lose weight.

How about telling you you don’t have to cut out all carbs to see weight loss progress.

Is that something you are interested in?

If so keep on reading.

Please do me a favor though, make sure you read every word. Top to bottom.

I want you to leave this article having full confidence in how to use flexible dieting for weight loss in your specific scenario.

So get ready because we are diving in.

What Is Flexible Dieting For Weight Loss?

flexible dieting for weight loss

Flexible dieting for weight loss is something that is relatively new in the diet world.

Truthfully, it is not really technically a “diet”.

Traditional diets lead you down a path of quick fixes, food restrictions, and often massive weight regain once you stop said diet.

Flexible dieting is different. There are going to be no foods you cannot eat or certain time periods where you cannot eat.

Flexible dieting is rather following a very simple set of rules and guidelines rather than following an over restrictive plan some person sold you off the internet.

Those guidelines are

  • Realizing that how much you eat is more important than what exactly you eat
  • Your individual schedule / preferences determines when you eat and what you eat.
  • Valuing Consistency Over Perfection
  • Slow and Sustainable Results Over Rapid Fast Results

You’re probably like “What did this guy smoke before he wrote this..”.

Stick with me because I am going to lay it all out for you and prove to you that flexible dieting for weight loss is the superior weight loss strategy.

Let’s go over the first point which realizing that how much you eat is more important that what exactly you eat.

How Much You Eat Vs What You Eat

flexible dieting for weight loss

This theory that there are certain food groups that make you fat, certain foods that make you fat, or certain nutrients that make you fat is nothing short of totally 100% inaccurate.

Sugar doesn’t make you fat.

Carbs don’t make you fat.

Fat doesn’t make you fat.

You see this is where how much you eat is more important than what exactly you eat comes into play.

At the end of the day all weight loss, weight maintenance, or weight gain comes down to is an energy balance equation.

Refer to the picture above. In the simplest terms if your body is burning more calories than you are consuming through food you will be in a negative energy balance.

This negative energy balance is referred to as a calorie deficit. This calorie deficit is the only way you will lose weight.

As long as that calorie deficit is present and you are eating less calories than your body is burning on a daily basis you will lose weight.

Those calories could come from chicken and broccoli. Those calories could come from pop tarts and soda. Those calories could come from Big Macs.

No, seriously, you can eat a big mac every day and still lose fat. Don’t believe me? Check out World Renowned Fitness Coach Jordan Syatt’s documentary on himself eating a Big Mac everyday for a month and losing 7lbs HERE.

A calorie is a calorie. It is a unit of measurement. In the same way a mile is a mile on the road, a mile in the sand, or a mile in the ocean.

They may have different make ups but at the end of the day you are still traveling a mile.

Flexible Dieting For Weight Loss Doesn’t Mean Eat Whatever You Want

Technically you could eat whatever you want and still lose weight.

It is going to be a hell of a lot harder though to lose weight if all of your calories are coming from Cheetos and pizza for a number a reasons.

Also not to mention if you are looking to not just lose weight but also obtain a certain look to your physique this is where what you eat comes into play.

If you want to keep or build lean muscle mass and lose fat then what you eat matters.

We will hit on this a bit later.

Prioritizing The Individual With Flexible Dieting For Weight Loss

You should be able to eat foods you enjoy on a regular basis, on a schedule that works best for you, and still lose weight.

I said it before and I am standing by it.

Here is the deal.

You can try to do keto and cut out all your carbs.

You can also try to do intermittent fasting and only eat in a 4 hour window period.

Here is the secret. Lean in.

If you love carbs, like most normal earth creatures, you won’t stick to keto.

With this being true any short term progress you may see will immediately be lost once you stop that particular diet.

Leading to this cycle of you losing weight and gaining weight in perpetuity.

I said earlier flexible dieting is not a diet. Flexible dieting for weight loss should be viewed as a lifestyle change as opposed to a short term crash diet fix.

This is why taking you the individual into account you will be able to build a diet around your schedule and preferences.

If your schedule is one that allows you to eat at 7am, 11am, 3 pm, and 7pm, amazing do that.

Or if you would rather eat 3 bigger meals great do that too.

If you want to eat carbs at every meal be my guest.

If you prefer higher fat groovy eat your almonds and cheese.

This is truly all dependent on you the individual.

Now let me make this very clear I am not saying every meal should look like bread, cheese, and almonds.

If you want to optimize health, longevity, satiety (which just means you won’t be starving all day), you want to prioritize “healthy” foods like fruits, vegetables, protein.

Yet that is not to say you cannot work in foods like chocolate, bread, or those devilishly good cookies you can whip up.

Take my online coaching client Giselle for example.

flexible dieting for weight loss

Giselle and I have been working together for over a year now.

She has lost over 35 lbs, 7.5 inches on her waist, and completely revamped her confidence.

Through this time she has gone on multiple vacations where she ate or drank calories she enjoyed and had multiple weekends where she would indulge on her beloved Aussie Rolls from a restaurant called Sweetwater.

Something Giselle does do though maybe better than anyone is stick to her whole nutrient dense foods 80-90% of the time.

Things like eggs, rice, veggies, fruits, chicken.

Yet because she does that she is able to get away with having her beloved rolls or her chocolate fixes every now and then. All while still seeing amazing progress as you can see above.

I am showing you this for two reasons. The first being I am so incredibly proud of her and all her hard work.

The second is to show you is Giselle is a busy working parent just like you. Not only is it possible but it works. It works damn good too.

We will hit on exactly what this looks like shortly.

Consistency Over Perfection

Let me give you a common dieting scenario and tell me if you’ve ever experienced this.

You start some over restrictive diet whether cutting carbs, eating only at certain times, or drinking god awful apple cider vinegar.

Eventually you “cheat”. You have the cookie, you eat outside of the time window or food allotments.

Because you “cheated” you say screw if you are going to have it you’re not gonna have one bite you’re going to have all the bites.

This leads you vastly over eat. After that you say well you just screwed everything up so might as well quit.

Sound familiar? You are not alone. This is where flexible dieting for weight loss comes into play.

When you take restrictions off foods you can enjoy them when you so please.

It is like telling your kid not to touch something in the store…. within 4 seconds of you saying that they touch something.

When you know they are not off limits you don’t have to cheat to have them you can just have them.

This allows you to adhere to said “diet” better and even make it enjoyable.

Now that is not to say some days you won’t over eat. If you go to a social event and have some drinks with your friends you may go over your calories.

That is 100% okay and actually apart of the plan.

Flexible dieting for weight loss means you don’t have to be perfect to lose weight, rather just consistent.

Slow And Steady With Flexible Dieting For Weight Loss

flexible dieting for weight loss

This is one question I ask every single one of my online coaching clients before I begin working with them.

Would you have have slower more sustainable progress or more rapid progress that is unsustainable?

If you have come to this article I assume you are fed up with the yo yo dieting, with the gaining and losing weight, and with not making a lifestyle change.

You are not going to lose a ton of weight in the first 2 weeks with flexible dieting.

You are not going to cut all your water weight or royally screw up your insides via some detox a fitness influencer sold you on instagram.

What flexible dieting for weight loss is centered around is slower more sustainable progress you can keep for the rest of your life.

This is the farthest thing from a quick fix way of losing weight.

Yet if you want to have a way of not only losing weight but keeping it off forever you have effectively just found your resource.

Let’s now go over some guidelines when setting up your own diet.

How To Use Flexible Dieting For Weight Loss

There is truly two ways to take flexible dieting for weight loss and put it into action to start seeing results.

The first is going to be simply tracking your calories and protein.

The second is going to be tracking calories, protein, carbs, and fats.

We will talk about both and the pros and cons of each but first let me give some general guidelines.

80% Of Your Food Should Be Coming From Nutrient Dense Whole Foods.

What does this mean? This means relatively 80% of your food choices should be coming from foods like the ones listed below.

  • Chicken
  • Avocado
  • Eggs
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Spinach
  • Peppers
  • Whole Grains
  • Fruit
  • Beans

The list could go on but basically you shouldn’t be eating pizza and ice cream at every meal.

This is where a lot of people go wrong in flexible dieting.

They hear me say that as long as you hit your calories that is all that matters for fat loss which means they can eat chips all day long.

Here is the thing.

Could you do that? Yes. Is that anywhere near optimal or beneficial for long term health, longevity, immune system, bone density, lean muscle gain?

Hell to the no.

Not to mention that would be vastly unsustainable for you due to the health complications that would come with it.

This is why a good rule of thumb would be to have 80-90% of your calories come nutrient dense whole foods and 10-20% come from “treats”.

Treats can be things like chocolates, chips, apple caramel crumb cake…. Hmmmm.

If you are taking in 2000 calories a day that would mean 1600-1800 calories come from the foods listed above and 2-400 calories come from treats.

“But wait Eric you said I could eat whatever I want and still lose weight!”

You can but here is the deal. To lose weight you need to be in a calorie deficit.

To optimize that calorie deficit and ensure you stick to it consistently you need to do a few things.

One is eat high protein. Why? Because protein is the most satiating nutrient. What this means is it fills you up the longest.

Most peoples diets fail because they over restrict and then get so hungry they could eat enough for a small village. Keep your protein high to avoid this and stick to your calorie deficit.

The next is prioritizing these nutrient dense whole foods we have been talking about.

This is because again they will keep you full, energized, and healthy leading you to stick to your calorie deficit.

If you can’t stay in a calorie deficit you won’t lose weight. Focus on getting quality food in you with the occasional treats to satisfy yourself to see the best results.

Flexible Dieting Tracking Strategies

Now that you know what your day should look like in terms of what foods you should be focusing on and what foods can be your treats, let’s look at how to track that.

The first option is going to be to track just calories and protein.

Pros of tracking just calories and protein would be

  • Simple, clear, concise goal
  • Will be prioritizing protein dense foods within those calories
  • As long as your calories are met you will lose weight regardless of what your carbs and fat numbers are

I do this with a ton of my online coaching clients because of the simplicity of it.

Hit calories. Hit protein.

Short, sweet, and to the point.

This works extremely well if you are a busy parent with a job, kids, responsibilities and an endless time crunch.

Focus on what really matters and don’t major in the minor.

As far as what your calories and protein should be set to I have an entire article on that HERE.

For short term purposes, if you are trying to lose weight set your calories to your bodyweight x 10.

Set your protein goal to .8g of protein per lb of body weight.

So if you are 200lbs right now this would mean your total calories for the day would be 2000 and your protein would be 160g for the day.

If you want more information on why I chose those numbers head to the article HERE or shoot me an email at coacheric@ericrobertsfitness.com I would be happy to help.

The second option is going to be tracking calories, protein, carbs, and fats.

This option is great for people who want to take it a step farther in how calculated they are being.

Or if you just want to learn more about you and your body. Some people respond better to higher carb, some people respond better to higher fat.

By respond I don’t mean lose weight, I mean how your workouts are or how your energy levels are. The more data you gather the better decisions you can make.

Pros of tracking calories, protein, carbs, and fats

  • Can be more precise
  • Can get more data to make decisions on energy, workouts, sleep etc.
  • Can learn what foods have what amounts of carbs and fats in them
  • Can put a limit on how many carbs / fats you eat so you don’t over eat

I will fully say there is no one better way than the other. I don’t think tracking all 4 goals is better than just tracking protein and calories.

It is truly dependent on you the individual and what your lifestyle is like or your preferences are, aka what the principles of flexible dieting for weight loss are.

If you want to track carbs and fats as well I would follow the guidelines above set for calories and protein first.

I would set your fat to bodyweight x .3. If you weigh 200 lbs with would be 60g of fat per day.

I would use the rest of your calories for carbs. How do you figure this out? Let’s continue with the 200 lb person example.

Protein has 4 calories per 1 gram of protein. This means 160g of protein x 4 calories would come to 640 calories from protein.

Fat has 9 calories per 1 gram of fat. This means 60g of fat x 9 calories would come to 540 calories.

640 calories from protein + 540 calories from fat = 1180 calories total.

Take your 2000 calorie limit and minus it by 1180 to give you 820 calories left for carbs.

Carbs have 4 calories per 1 gram of carbs. Take 820 divided by 4 and that comes to 205g of carbs.

So on a 2000 calorie diet it would come to

160g of protein

60g of fat

205g of carbs

Eat On A Schedule That Suites Your Lifestyle

If you like eating breakfast cool eat breakfast.

If you aren’t hungry in the morning cool don’t eat breakfast.

If you get home late and have dinner late that is fine. We now know that as long as you hit your total calories for the day that is all that matters for weight loss.

That being said I want to give you a few things to think about.

The first being that if you consistently find yourself over eating at night because you are starving coupled with you consistently skipping breakfast, maybe it is time to think about eating breakfast.

Can you skip breakfast and lose weight? 100% yes and I am not saying you have to eat it.

What I am saying is if you have been doing that and consistently over indulge at night because your hunger gets the best of you, you may want to consider eating more during the day.

The next is going to be if you are wanting to have kick ass workouts.

If you want to be sure your workouts stay top notch I would highly recommend having

  • Protein before your workout
  • Carbs before your workout

Both can be around 20-30 grams each and about 1-2 hours before your workout.

Other than that you can have 5 meals a day, 3 meals a day with 2 snacks, or 2 big meals a day.

As long as you hit whatever goals you set out to hit via whichever tracking option you choose that is all that matters.

Technically you could even have some days lower calories some days higher calories. If you want to really learn more about that head HERE for my article on calorie cycling.

Final Word On Flexible Dieting For Weight Loss

To recap flexible dieting for weight loss is

  • Realizing that how much you eat is more important than what exactly you eat
  • Your individual schedule / preferences determines when you eat and what you eat.
  • Valuing Consistency Over Perfection
  • Slow and Sustainable Results Over Rapid Fast Results

You can either track calories and protein or track calories, protein, carbs, and fats.

Eat on whatever schedule best fits your lifestyle preferences.

See amazing results.

It is totally normal to be a bit skeptical on flexible dieting and if it really works for weight loss.

I would urge you to first try it out for yourself and see the wonders it can do.

Also to head HERE if you want to see more of my online coaching clients success stories with flexible dieting for weight loss.

You do not have to cut out your favorite foods to get the body you have always wanted.

I promise.

Drop any comments or questions below and feel free to email me at coacheric@ericrobertsfitness.com if you want some more specific help.

Happy Flexible Dieting.