Does Weight Loss with If It Fits Your Macros Work?

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Answered by: Matthew, An Expert in the About Nutrition Category
The first rule of IIFYM is do not talk about if it fits your macros.

The second rule of IIYFM is it probably does not fit your macros but you're going to eat it anyway. It's the same problem that has plagued countless of individuals trying to lose weight on what is sold as a simple, easy, and adaptable dieting process called "If it fits your macros" - a pioneer of "Flexible Dieting". The process, wherein, according to science research and discovery is actually very simple. You cannot eat more than you burn in calories and hope to lose any appreciable weight loss of any kind.

Now, if things "just worked" then everything would stop here, there would be nothing more to discuss. The problem is, despite what science has uncovered, why does it seem weight loss with IIFYM often doesn't work?

Why is that? Why is it that so many people will count their calories, diet with astonishing "flexibility" after hearing ranting and raving about losing weight while still being able to fit in a nice dessert at the end of the day?

The first rule of human psychology: do not talk about human psychology...Which is the best starting point next on our journey as to why It Just Doesn't Fit Your Macros.

There is no inherent problem with IIFYM. The problem is it totally ignores human psychology. We like to eat. Eating is an enjoyable thing for humans. We like food that tastes good. Sometimes, we can get used to eating super high-density calorie foods so much that it can become a problem.

These foods are specifically developed with the purpose of mind of having extremely intense flavor profiles that attract human taste buds. Why is this? Simply because these companies need to make stuff taste good to sell it. Nobody buys anything that tastes bad.

What does all this have to do with IIFYM? Well, put simply it's just very difficult for the vast majority of people to consume a reasonable amount of junk food (high macronutrient density, low micronutrient density) on a daily basis and still actually Meet Their Macros.

So what am do I suggest? Do I propose a fix all solution for this? Have I come up with a solution? Unfortunately, I have not. I don't have any better suggestion, just what I know has worked in the past for many successful weight loss individuals who preferred that abstinence from junk with planned cheat days or cheat meals found it easier to abstain from eating too many high-density foods when they didn't eat them on a daily basis.

Of course, counting your calories is always crucial in any weight loss regime. Websites like can make counting calories a very simple process and there are also app versions for smartphones and tablets of the same website.

What many people find however is, without setting planned cheat days and meals, they often find themselves unsure of what to eat, and end up eating something in the afternoon, only to find themselves very hungry again in the evening, and having something that would push them over their macros simply due to unpreparedness.

This is not the case for everyone. You may have an easy time eating "free foods" every day and losing weight. But for many others, if you're struggling with your weight loss, consider this strategy.

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