Flexible dieting. How does it work, and why do we use it?
Many people are confused about why different diets work or don't work. In the end, weight loss or weight gain comes down to energy balance: calories in vs. calories out. It can be confusing to hear as many people say things like:
• Calories don't matter
• It's what you eat, not how much you eat
• You can still gain fat in a calorie deficit
• I ate in a calorie deficit but didn't lose weight
There are other myths, but those are the most common. Without going too deep on energy balance, let's just say that the scientific research is extremely compelling. The reason people don't believe in the concept of energy balance is because the vast majority of people overestimate their calories out and underestimate their calories in.
Research has demonstrated that people overestimate their physical activity by up to 50% and underestimate their calorie intake by 30-50%. In controlled feeding studies, where researchers can limit a subject's food intake by completely controlling it, most people lose the expected amount of weight in a calorie deficit. This even holds true for overweight, obese, and type 2 diabetics.
Another area of confusion for many is understanding that the type of diet you use doesn't matter much when calories and protein are equated between diets. There are over 20 studies where calories and protein are equated, while carb and fat intake varied. The conclusion is that these diets all produced the same amount of fat loss. When we look at research on sticking to diets, studies haven't been able to find a single diet that stands out as being superior for adherence. Based on these findings, you should choose the easiest diet for YOU to adhere to because that will provide the best long-term results.
This is why Carbon uses a flexible approach. Instead of forcing you to choose between various diets, Carbon gives freedom. You can choose between the following diet preferences: balanced, reduced-carb, low-fat, plant-based, and ketogenic. You can also adjust the macro ratios within each to fine-tune to your liking. This allows you to customize your macros to the easiest diet for YOU to adhere to because compliance is the science.
Remember, if the approach is unsustainable, so are the results. Focus on making your dietary approach a LIFESTYLE that you can sustain for the long term if you want life-changing results.