I want to dedicate today’s post to talking about what flexible eating is NOT vs. what flexible eating IS.
Let me start by saying that flexible eating is a methodology I use to help people lose weight. Just like there are different diets out there- intermittent fasting, keto, low-carb, etc., flexible eating sits in its own category.
I I don’t refer to flexible eating as a traditional diet because a diet usually means following something temporary to achieve results.
Flexible eating is a lifestyle. You never stop being a flexible eater whether the goal is weight loss or weight maintenance. You continue to follow the same principles as a flexible eater.
Let’s get into it!
As a flexible eater, you are NOT eating ice cream all day. Flexible eaters enjoy their ice cream or other sweets in the right portion sizes but also make an effort to eat enough fruits & vegetables, whole grains, & lean protein.
Having the balance of eating foods that we love & enjoy with foods that we need for nourishment is important.
As a flexible eater, you are NOT having cheat days. Flexible eaters focus on having balance throughout the week, not designating a day on the weekend to eat whatever they want.
Having cheat days was something I lived for when I first attempted to lose weight with a low-carb diet. I was focused on being strict and rigid during the week so I can get to my one day of eating whatever the heck my heart desired on the weekend.
The problem with this is that calories count on the weekends as well. You can’t technically eat clean all week and have a free-for-all on the weekend. Eating half a pizza, a container of ice cream, and 4 glasses of wine can potentially make you lose less weight during the week.
It is however normal to eat more calorie-dense foods on the weekends. We have time off, we’re out and about more, going to events & parties, brunching, and enjoying a few cocktails. I call these fun days. But with fun days, we are still making a conscious effort to think about portion control vs. having the mentality of eating whatever since it’s a cheat day.
Fun days include mindfulness and portion control. Whether it’s the weekend or weekday, honoring what your body is asking for is key as a flexible eater.
I have fun days on the weekends but I also enjoy a lot of good food during the week. This includes having dessert, make delicious foods for my meals, and sometimes going with hot Cheetos instead of a protein shake for a snack. There’s no restriction. No rules.
Lastly, flexible eating is NOT a quick fix. As mentioned, we aren’t following a temporary diet. We are learning the lifestyle NOW during the weight-loss period.
Yes, weight loss as a flexible eater might be a little slower than traditional low-carb diets but that’s because eating enough and having the room to include fun foods throughout the week and weekend is so important.
How many times have you tried low-carb or keto, lost weight, but then gained it all back on again?
Flexible eating requires patience but is sustainable. It helps you transition into weight maintenance so the weight you lose stays off!