Diets have been recently taking up a big part of the spotlight in the bodybuilding and fitness industry, new diets and training methods have been gaining popularity and at the same time have been saturating and overloading the new generation of bodybuilders and fitness athletes with incomplete and incoherent information on what it takes to build a good physique. The most popular diet right now goes by the name of IIFYM which is an acronym for “If It Fits Your Macros”, while it may sound complex it really isn’t and unlike other diets IIFYM has been making waves for its simplicity and the results it has been known to generate.
IIFYM is a simple dieting method that has gained popularity recently because it’s efficient, flexible and productive; the way it works is actually very simple. Most diets are created and designed around foods that you can’t eat and around calorie counting, IIFYM on the other hand doesn’t really limit what you can eat because instead of measuring your food consumption with calories it measures it in macronutrients.
Macronutrients can be defined as nutrients that the human body needs in order to function properly, without macronutrients the body can’t produce or use energy, grow and perform tasks such as cellular reproduction. Macronutrients should be consumed in high quantities, micronutrients on the other hand are another story, without macronutrients (macros) the body can’t and will not grow and function properly, macros come in the forms of protein, carbohydrates and fats, some like to bring fiber and sugar into the equation and measure them separately but that totally depends on personal choice.
Micronutrients are very similar substances to macronutrients, they perform vital tasks just like macronutrients do but their consumption should be regulated hence why they are called micronutrients, the human body only needs a certain amount of these before they start generating higher levels of toxicity; micronutrients come in different forms ranging from vitamins to amino acids and minerals.
If It Fits Your Macros is a simple and yet effective way to keep your daily food intake on check, there are several macro calculators online that can give you an approximate on what your daily intakes of protein, carbohydrates and fats should be. The way you eat will highly depend on the goal you want to achieve and the level of physical activity you perform on a daily basis, someone who wants to build muscle will eat a lot more food than someone who wants to lose weight.
The big problem with the IIFYM diet is that it’s highly misunderstood; If It Fits Your Macros is great way to diet but sometimes the concept of flexible dieting gets lost and misunderstood. A lot of the inexperienced bodybuilders like to think that IIFYM means that you can eat just about anything in sight, this isn’t totally true, even though it’s important to eat the amount of macros that your plan requests you still need to watch where the food comes from, eating a chicken breast from KFC won’t be the same thing as eating home cooked chicken, even if you can magically reach your daily macro intake by eating junk food, you won’t look or feel good.
IIFYM was designed as a comfortable way of dieting not as an excuse to eat everything in sight, you need to remember that it’s really important to have a fair share of micronutrients in your diet, without them your body won’t progress as it should. Another thing worth mentioning is that most of the online macro calculators aren’t accurate, just because an online calculator says you should eat a certain amount of macronutrients it doesn’t mean you actually should, everyone has a different body type with a different genetic structure, some people gain muscle by only eating half a gram of protein per pound of bodyweight while others need to double the amount to even see minimal progress. Every diet you try needs to be based and formulated around you and the results you see with it.
If It Fits Your Macros is a great dieting idea if it’s used correctly but if isn’t (which is almost always the case) it can be disastrous, if you are looking into trying the diet we encourage you to give it a go but always remember to take everything with a grain of salt. If you know how your body functions and how it responds to certain food groups IIFYM should be a great option but if you don’t have enough knowledge on the subject you can always find someone that you trust and who knows a thing or two on nutrition that can help you reach your personal goals.