Flexible dieting and protein shakes

This week, I want to address flexible dieting and protein shakes.

One of the worst things about an extremely restricted diet is the inevitable binge or cheat day. Constantly being strict and saying no to things just isn’t sustainable for most people; I know that for a fact when it comes to me. With flexible dieting, there’s no need to binge. If you crave a certain food then you can easily work it into your macros.

You can enjoy social occasions: no more feeling guilty and miserable after demolishing a burger when you’re out with your friends. If you know you have a social outing coming, you can plan your day around it so it can still be within your daily macro requirements.

You can eat anything. Yes, anything. No single food is off limits. This doesn’t necessarily mean you should fill your diet with nothing but doughnuts and pizza. But you can enjoy these types of things in moderation if you want to. That’s the beauty of it.

Skipping a social outing with friends so you can eat your chicken and broccoli is unhealthier than factoring a burger into your macros.

Placing unnecessary and ridiculous restrictions on yourself all the time is unhealthier than sneaking a piece of chocolate into your daily intake.

Starving yourself through the week and avoiding all the foods you enjoy only to binge on the weekend is unhealthier than satisfying yourself in moderation each day. See where I’m going with this?

No single food or food group will negatively effect your progress; only if you consistently consume them in excess. Enjoy the foods you love in moderation and continue making great progress in a happy manner.


Should I take protein shakes?

I get this question a lot. So, I thought I would put my thoughts here for you readers to see.

Protein shakes are not necessarily better or worse than whole food sources. The benefit of shakes is that they are convenient, they are usually low in carbs and fats and they are priced a lot cheaper than most lean protein sources when you compare them pound for pound.

For some reason, though people have it in their heads that protein shakes are some magic muscle builder, that is far from the truth.

The only difference in eating 30 grammes from a chicken breast and drinking 30 grammes from a shake is how long it takes you to eat and digest it. But the result is the same.

So are protein shakes necessary? Absolutely not. Are they convenient and more affordable? Absolutely yes.

Take protein shakes for the convenience, or because you’re struggling to hit your protein intake, or because you want to look cool walking out of the gym shaking your protein around for everyone to see (I have been guilty of doing that). But do not continue to think they’re going to magically produce gains.


Decide, set and go!

Some of you readers have decided that sometime in 2018 you will start taking control of your health and fitness by eating right and incorporating exercises into your regimen.

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Congratulations! If you’re reading this then you’ve made it to 2018 and that’s something to be proud of.

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First off, Merry Christmas and Healthy New Year to you readers of this and other weekly columns that appear in the Stabroek News.

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Already suffering from the seasonal sniffles? With the arrival of cold and flu season, you may be tempted to turn to immune-boosting supplements like Emergen-C to save you from a sore throat, runny nose, body aches, and the other energy-sapping side effects of the year-end bug.

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