A Step-By-Step Guide to Flexible Dieting

A Step-By-Step Guide to Flexible Dieting

Body Composition
Back in 2011, I first went onto bodybuilding.com and started learning about calories and macros. I am not necessarily proud of that starting point. But it was my introduction to a concept called If It Fits Your Macros (IIFYM) which basically meant that it did not really matter what you ate as long as you meet your macronutrient targets. From a body composition perspective, while it is obviously a bit more nuanced than that, the outcomes will be mostly the same. Flexible dieting is a mostly interchangeable term with IIFYM. But I prefer the terminology flexible dieting. IIFYM has a bit of a negative vibe to it since so many people have taken it to an extreme. Instead of trying to have mostly nutrient-rich foods to make up the bulk…
Read More
Do BCAAs and EAAs Work?

Do BCAAs and EAAs Work?

Body Composition
One of my goals with this blog is to have a quality post on pretty much every topic I frequently get asked about. That way I can always have somewhere solid to send people to whenever they DM me questions like “do branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) and Essential Amino Acids (EAAs) help with muscle growth?” I love the idea of that because it means I can do each question justice and give a well thought out response to everything, rather than just giving a basic summary. For this post in particular, I have avoided writing it for so long. Partly for the same reason it took so long to get a post on creatine on this blog. To me, the practical nature of the question has a simple answer, but…
Read More
5 Ways to Make Weight Loss Easier Through Nutrition

5 Ways to Make Weight Loss Easier Through Nutrition

Body Composition
I have been a dietitian for around 5 years now. Throughout this journey, a large percentage of my clients have been those who are looking to lose weight. And there is a tonne of stuff I have learnt along the way. There is no one thing that is the secret to all this. Most people would benefit from more knowledge, but that alone is not the answer. No individual behaviour change strategy will be suitable for everybody either. No mindset hack will work for everybody. But what I will try to cover in this post is 5 key things that are universal concepts that will help most people, regardless of what strategy you are using for weight loss. Higher Protein Intake Per calorie, protein is the most satiating macronutrient. Per…
Read More
What is Volume Eating? | Weight Loss

What is Volume Eating? | Weight Loss

Body Composition
Volume eating helps with the most critical factor to success when it comes to losing weight and keeping it off… the calorie balance equation. In other words, to lose weight you need to burn more calories than you consume. Volume eating is one way that you can reduce the number of calories you eat whilst eating a lot of food. It is not a strict diet plan; it is a technique that you can apply to your current diet in order to reduce the calorie density (also referred to as energy density) of what you consume. When following this approach, the focus is eating a lot of foods that have a lower calorie density. Why is this way of eating useful? By focusing on mostly foods with a lower calorie…
Read More
Pros and Cons of Reverse Dieting

Pros and Cons of Reverse Dieting

Body Composition
Reverse dieting gained massive traction some time almost a decade ago. It looked like this almost too good to be true strategy that could be useful for speeding up your metabolism and allowing you to eat more food without gaining weight. It could help to build better relationships with food, allow you to eat more food and manage your appetite better, while also allowing you more calories to use as fuel for your training. It is NOT a weight loss tool. Increasing the number of calories, you maintain your weight on could set you up for future weight loss. But reverse dieting itself is not designed for weight loss. The definition I use for reverse dieting is that it involves slowly and systematically increasing calories at the end of a…
Read More
Fat Burning VS Fat Loss

Fat Burning VS Fat Loss

Body Composition
Fasted cardio and very low carb diets have both been consistently touted as the special ingredient for fat loss due to their ability to increase fat burning. You don’t have to be a veteran of Bodybuilding.com to have heard that skipping breakfast before some morning cardio or eating chicken and broccoli, hold the rice, is the secret to getting ripped.  Both fasted cardio and very low carb diets have gained popularity based on the assumption that if your body does not have carbs to burn for energy, it will burn fat instead. From a superficial level, it would make sense to assume that burning fat for energy would equal fat loss. But does this claim really check out? What is fat burning? ‘Fat burning’ or fat oxidation refers to the…
Read More
Nutrition for Fat Loss: A Dietitian’s Guide

Nutrition for Fat Loss: A Dietitian’s Guide

Body Composition
Fat loss is some that from a nutritional perspective is somehow both simple and incredibly complex. Understanding nutritional priorities when it comes to fat loss can make the process seem simple. It can also make it easy to avoid focusing on things that do not really matter. But it can be ridiculously complex when you factor in all the details that can be relevant. This post is going to cover the fundamentals of nutrition for fat loss, while also touching on a lot of practical points. As a dietitian writing about nutrition for fat loss, the training/exercise aspect will not be discussed in this post. But if your goal is fat loss, it makes sense to also be training or exercising in an effective manner that also lines up with…
Read More
Supplements for Bodybuilders and Powerlifters

Supplements for Bodybuilders and Powerlifters

Body Composition, Sports
When it comes to bodybuilding and powerlifting, we all know that training, rest and nutrition, in general, should be prioritised above supplementation. If you are looking to optimise your body composition and performance though, it makes sense to take advantage of any benefit you can. And while supplements might not be necessary to see great results, there are certain situations where they can help improve your results. This post is going to list common supplements used in the bodybuilding and powerlifting community and how they may or may not be beneficial. Creatine Creatine is one of the most well-studied supplements that consistently provides benefits. It is a naturally occurring non-protein amino acid that is found in foods such as red meat and seafood. But typically, people do not consume the…
Read More
Nutrition For Strength Athletes

Nutrition For Strength Athletes

Body Composition, Sports
Strength and power athletes are typically looking to enhance power relative to body weight. This means some sort of resistance training is going to be a big part of their training. As with any type of training, proper nutrition has a significant impact on how well your body responds to and recovers from training. In strength training, nutritional objectives include: meeting caloric needs providing the optimal ratio of macronutrients (protein, carbohydrate, and fat) incorporating specific timing of meals/nutrition   providing optimal micronutrients (vitamins, minerals) ensuring sufficient hydration Energy, nutrient needs, and nutrient timing can differ vastly from person to person or in the context of different sports and training modalities. Just a few of the factors that come into consideration are age, gender, height, weight, level and intensity of training or…
Read More
Are Refeeds or Cheat Meals Beneficial for Fat Loss?

Are Refeeds or Cheat Meals Beneficial for Fat Loss?

Body Composition
Refeeds or cheat meals/days typically involve either a day or meal that is significantly higher calorie than what is regularly being consumed. Generally, they are undertaken during a dieting phase where you are consistently in a calorie deficit. And from what I see, they are most often performed once per week, often on a weekend. A cheat meal is typically just a high-calorie meal that is generally high in carbs and/or fat. A cheat day or refeed day is a day that is usually either a day at maintenance calories (instead of a calorie deficit) or a calorie surplus. Refeeds and cheat meals/days are pretty much interchangeable phrases, although I prefer the term refeed since that implies that it is being utilised for purposes beyond just a break from the…
Read More