FAQ

Got a question? It's probably been answered here.

Are there any foods I have to eat? Or any I shouldn't eat?

No on both counts. You should be generally healthy - i.e. eat plenty of fresh produce, not too much processed food, and a decent number of fruits, vegetables and fibre, but the quantity of food (i.e. the calories and macros) is much more important than supposed ‘quality.’ Make sure to eat foods you enjoy while keeping your health in mind.

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Can I change my macros?

We'll control your calorie intake, but you'll be able to apply your own personal preferences to the way your macros are structured on a day to day basis. Go to the Nutrition section of the Dashboard, enter the new data or change your goals, change the carb/ fat preferences if you need to, and let the platform do it for you.

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Can I really eat anything I want?

In theory, yes. But in practice, it always makes sense from a health & satiety standpoint to ensure you’re getting enough fresh produce, fruits & vegetables, fibre & not overdoing the processed foods. At the end of the day, flexible dieting is more so about understanding the caloric consequences of the food choices you make, rather than the opportunity to fit as much junk food into your diet as possible. In saying that, the only restrictions on the food choices you're able to make, will be the ones that are dictated by your macronutrient targets.

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Can I swap carbs for fats & fats for carbs?

Absolutely. Calories are the most important factor as far as weight management is concerned, so whilst fats have 9 calories per gram & carbs have 4 calories per gram, provided you bear that in mind and track them you should be fine.

Both macros have their place & play different roles within the body, and you might find detrimental effects on performance or health if you go too high or low on one or the other for a sustained period, whilst interchanging macros frequently will likely lead to more volatile fluctuations on the scales as well. Consistency is always key, for weight progression, training energy and performance & your mood & energy levels.

If you do want to make a change for an extended period of time though, you can alter the ratio of carbs to fats that you're eating in the Nutrition Section of your Dashboard.

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Do you offer meal plans?

It's highly unlikely that you'll be able to follow a meal plan for the rest of your life and for that reason we don't write them for you. The main benefit of flexible dieting is that you’ll have the opportunity to eat foods you love in moderation whilst moving closer to your goals without ever having to rely on the rigidity of a set menu.

Life happens, and being chained to a set of meals every day and eating the same foods all the time will only work for so long before driving you to eat all of the foods you've been craving and making sticking to your diet all that more challenging. For this reason, MyPhysique does not offer meal plans.

If you're looking to make your life easier for short periods of time or cut down on time spent tracking your food, there's nothing stopping you from creating a meal plan of your own using the macro targets that MyPhysique calculates for you - that way you'll be in full control of the foods you eat at all times.

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How close to my macro targets do I need to get?

As close as possible without obsessing over it. 

Aim to be within 10% of each macro every day - that's what the MyPhysique system will see as adequate compliance, as if you're below that it will struggle to make educated decisions in regards to how best to move forward.

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How many meals should I eat each day?

As many as you like, whilst still hitting your daily calorie & macronutrient requirements.

Manipulating your body composition is all about calories and macros, not when you eat. When you eat your meals might influence your mood, energy levels, training intensity and performance, but in the grand scheme of things, hitting your macros and calories is the most important thing you can do as far as improving your body composition is concerned, so eat as many meals as you find convenient in hitting your daily macros & calories.

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Should I aim to hit my calories or my macros?

Your macronutrient targets are calculated after first determining your calorie requirements, which means if you hit your macros you’ll automatically hit your calories.

The reverse however, isn't always true. If you're looking to take close control over your body composition, then you'll do far better by tracking your macros, so that you can be sure you're getting enough of each specific macronutrient. If your body composition isn't overly important or you don't have the time or energy to track your macros, tracking your calories will give you the best opportunity to ensure you're eating enough to manipulate your body weight in line with your goals, without necessarily giving you the opportunity to build muscle or lose fat as effectively as possible.

Something to keep in mind...

Due to rounding on food labels, the macros and calories when tracking food on your app may not always line up. To eliminate confusion, if you're interested in manipulating your body composition (building muscle and losing fat etc) focus solely on your macros and hitting your calories will take care of itself.

One final thing to note, is that there are lots of user-generated entires in food-tracking applications like MyFitnessPal, which means some of them might be incorrect, or have macronutrient information that doesn't correspond with the calorie count.

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What are 'macros'?

Macros are macronutrients.

Macronutrients are the nutrients in food that supply the body with energy (calories).

The three macronutrients are protein, fat and carbohydrates.

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What Is flexible dieting?

It’s tough to give flexible dieting a firm definition.

People tend to have differing views and opinions over what exactly is involved, and what exactly is and isn’t classified as flexible dieting.

This is hardly surprising though – think about the ‘arch nemesis’ of flexible dieting – the ever-present ‘clean eating’ – and you’ll realise that quite often in the nutrition game, it’s impossible to perfectly define any eating style or concept.

That being said, the closest we can get to a definition of flexible dieting is something along these lines:

“A diet that doesn’t impose any restrictions on food sources or choices, and employs a monitoring system that looks at quantitative data – i.e. calories and macronutrients.

The degree and strictness of the monitoring can be altered and changed depending on the individual’s goals, preferences and lifestyle.”

Flexible dieting doesn’t ban or restrict any foods, and it doesn’t even judge foods or food groups as good or bad. Each individual item can only be viewed in the context of a diet as a whole.

For instance, let’s look at ice cream and broccoli. Ask someone on the street which is the healthier food, and they’d most likely respond with broccoli.

But what if that broccoli only made up a tiny portion of a person’s diet?

What if they were already over-consuming calories and gaining weight and that by adding the broccoli they were taking themselves further into a calorie surplus?

What about the ice cream?

What if having a small bowl of ice cream every few days helped somebody dieting avoid binging on a whole tub of ice cream once a week? Or, said person dieting had already eaten enough protein one day, got in plenty of vitamins, minerals and fibre, yet had carbs and fats left to eat – would having a bowl of ice cream within their calorie allowance be unhealthy or cause them to gain fat?

The answer is no.

“Hold on, so you’re telling me I should stop eating broccoli and go for ice cream instead?”

If only that were the case.

No.

That’s taking a slightly short-sighted view, as, unfortunately, many ‘clean eaters’, or those from outside of the industry tend to do.

All we’re saying is that flexible dieting doesn’t demonise any foods, and that you take a view of your diet as a whole before looking at the semantics, and tiny, often insignificant details.

One of the main concepts behind flexible dieting is that you get better results from being less strict. Don’t misinterpret this – if you’re looking to progress in a consistent and calculated fashion then strict compliance in terms of macro and calorie management is imperative, but food choice certainly needn’t be as rigid as most think.

To quote Alan Aragon - “Ultimately, it’s impossible to judge a food in isolation from the rest of the diet. Furthermore, it’s impossible to judge a diet without considering the training protocol, goals, preferences, and tolerances of the individual.”


(From: “Research Review: The Dirt on Clean Eating” - http://www.simplyshredded.com/research-review-the-dirt-on-clean-eating-written-by-nutrition-expert-alan-aragon.html)

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What's the difference between flexible dieting & 'IIFYM'?

Nothing.

Some people might suggest that the term 'flexible dieting' considers nutrition in a more holistic fashion than simply hitting your three macronutrient targets each day, but so long as you're hitting your macros, consuming plenty of healthy foods and consuming adequate fibre, it won't matter what you call it.

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