IIFYM (If It Fits Your Macros)
WHAT IS 'IIFYM'?
IIFYM stands for (if it fits your macros) which basically means that you can eat ANYTHING you want as long as it fits into your daily calorie requirements and daily macronutrient split of protein, carbohydrates and fats. IIFYM explained in a nutshell means if you eat oats and brown rice as oppose to bread and donuts for your choice of carbohydrates, it will have no difference at all on improving body composition. As long as your calorie intake is equal and macronutrient targets are met, eating a donut or a pizza will not automatically make you ‘fat’, The gist of “what is IIFYM” is that gaining body fat is not about the types of foods you consume, rather the excess calories you are consuming.
There is no such thing as ‘good’ and ‘bad’ foods, or ‘clean’ or ‘dirty’ foods for losing weight (unless you are talking from a health perspective). There is no list of foods that you are not allowed to eat to reach your body composition goals. A lot of people seem to think they have to give up pizza or McDonald’s just because they want to lose weight. General body composition is about calorie and macronutrient control, hitting your macronutrient targets and calorie requirements eating the foods you prefer.
IIFYM EXPLAINED IN AN EXAMPLE:
500 calories, 40g protein, 40g carbohydrates and 20g fats derived from chicken breast, brown rice and olive oil.
Is equal to:
500 calories, 40g protein, 40g carbohydrates and 20g fats derived from a peperoni pizza!
Now lets say for example your daily macronutrient targets were:
Protein = 250g
Carbohydrates = 310g
Fats = 85g
And you hit these numbers through eating pizza, ice cream, mayonnaise and drinking coke. That's perfectly fine, it doesn't matter and won't make any difference on body composition.
WHAT ABOUT THE GLYCEMIC INDEX?
The Glycemic index is irrelevant because of the metabolic equation. It does not matter or make any difference whether you consume high GI food such as dextrose sugars compared to a low GI food such as oatmeal. It will make no difference what so ever on improving body composition.
Many bodybuilders follow a glycemic index diet plan religiously, and they shouldn't! Why so? Well, the GI is based on eating carbohydrates on an empty stomach without the addition of protein, lipids, fiber, water, etc. Therefore, it obviously has its shortcomings and is not the be-all, end-all choice for choosing our carbohydrate sources. Truth is, a glycemic index diet is quite irrelevant when it comes to bodybuilding purposes. Let's take white potatoes for example. This food type is often avoided mainly because of its high GI rank. Foolish. White potatoes are a very nutritious food and should be incorporated in a sound nutrition program. See, we're already spotting shortcomings challenging the elements and principles of the glycemic index diet. But wait, there's more. The GI of that white potato can be drastically altered by combining it with the addition of protein, lipids, fiber, and other carbohydrates. In conclusion, a strict glycemic index diet plan should not be followed religiously by bodybuilders, and nutrient-density should be the main principle in one's diet plan, not the GI.
But won't consuming high GI foods create an insulin spike which will create more overall fat gain?
NO. There is a constant rise and fall ALL DAY. It is not the actual peaks that matter, IT IS THE RESULT AT THE END OF THE DAY, eating under maintenance = net lipolysis.
Insulin spikes do not affect weight loss when you are in a deficit.
So with G.I being irrelevant, there is no list of foods to avoid, and there is no list of food you have to eat in order to reach your body composition goals. Don’t think you have to give up pizza, cream donuts and fizzy drinks just because you want to lose some weight. General body composition is about macronutrient and calorie control, NOT FOOD CHOICES.
DON'T GET THE WRONG IDEA ABOUT IIFYM AND GLYCEMIC INDEX DIETS!
Now I'm not saying that you should go out right now and slam back 2 whole pizzas and a can of coke just because it fits your daily macros. You should still base your diet around good healthy nutritious foods! (like I always do!) however if you want to eat that cream donut or double scoop ice cream because you have been "craving it" and it fits your daily macros, then you can eat that donut or double scoop ice cream and it won't effect your body composition at all. Food choices are irrelevant! - Meeting your daily macros and calorie requirements is what equals results!
IIFYM is not a diet, it's not a lifestyle - Its just a philosophy thats intended to make your life easier.
IIFYM does not mean you can eat however much of whatever you want. It means you can maintain your sanity by eating like a regular human being from time to time. Just use common sense and keep it all in moderation, you should always base your diet mostly around good healthy nutritious foods (which the IIFYM principle still applies to). This will help you get in your micronutrients such as fiber, omega's vitamins and minerals as these are still important and should not be ignored!
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