IIFYM or If it fits your macros if a term referred to when certain food groups fit into your daily allowance if you will. Macro nutrients make up the total calories we consume and they are made up of carbs 1g = 4 cal , protein 1g = 4 cal and fat 1g = 9cal. Alongside that we have micronutrients which are the vitamins and minerals which our body needs to remain healthy.
As long as you understand that food contains calories and those calories can make you gain, loose or maintain weight then you can start applying steps towards your goal. You know the phrase your body is a car and it needs fuel to survive, well to an extent its true how ever it does not mean that you need to eat 6 small meals a day to keep yourself full of fuel and not loose any muscle or start shrinking. Some people based on their lifestyle or preference will eat their total amount of calories through the day in 6 meals while others do that in 3 bigger meals. I even know people who fast for 16 hours to fit their meals into a 4 hour gap. Again its what ever suits YOUR need and lifestyle not what is the best diet. The best type of diet is the one that works for you and you area able to sustain for your needs.
There is plenty of research to show no negative effects of fasting ( if anything a lot of the time its positive out comes of fasting ). At the end of the day food is a number of x amount of calories and those calories will make you gain or loose. Ill give you an example below.
The natural instinct is to say that the avocado is the healthier more natural version, which yes it might be true. How ever the calorie content is almost the same in both. If a person were to consume more calories than they needed and a large portion of those calories were to be made up of avocados then chances are they would be gaining weight the next day. Its being calorie aware and understanding what calories, that is the important part.
Now am I saying you should totally be living of creme eggs, well that would be the good life however the avocado has a lot essential fats that we need and it aids with our micros, so it does need to be part of our diet, with moderation of course. IIFYM type of lifestyle if about moderating things and being able to fit them into your lifestyle and diet. It gives you the freedom to eat a slice of pizza ( or half a pizza ) and still be able to loose weight.
Now then onto how to actually do this and work it out and apply it. First things first we need to find out your BMR ( basal metabolic rate) Essentially with your current lifestyle what is the amount of calories your body requires to maintain your weight. The more active you are the more calories you get. There are a few ways and apps such as Myfitnesspal or online calculators found here . Entering some basic data about yourself will give you a number, lets say you have an allowance of 2000 calories for the day.
2000 calories will then be split into 3 macros and their appropriate percentages i.e. protein 35, carbs 45 and fats 20. This being an example split as the way you split up those macros will vary on individuals and their needs. Some people like to have more fat in their diets while others don’t need to much. Now with this allowance you can plan your day of eating a head and pretty much as long a those foods fit your numbers by the end of the day you will be on track to your selected goal. So potentially you could go and eat a whole dominoes pizza one pizza being 800 calories, which takes a huge chunk out of your total amount as well as that it will not keep your full for long. How ever if you were to split the 800 into 2 400 calorie meals which were made up of rough example recipes found here and here, you not only did you fit 2 smaller meals in but they automatically made you feel fuller as they were more frequent. Again this type of dieting and lifestyle is all about flexibility where by you have to plan things ahead with meals and have control, its about fitting your lifestyle.
Another example to fit alcohol or late night junk food after a night out. I don’t expect you to be 100% on point with tracking, I mean if you are then awesome good job but most of use want freedom and don’t want to feel like these calories are controlling our lifestyle. What I would recommend for that is to set a site an good part of your daily calories aside for the night out, in my 2000 daily calories I would consume roughly 600 by dinner time so if I was to go out by 8 pm I’d have 1200 calories left to play with so that way even tho I am enjoying my night and chances are ill go over that 1200 allowance but the extra calories won’t have been as big of a difference if I had not left that much of an allowance. Its planning ahead thats what makes dieting and weight loss or weight gain easier.
I hope this shed some light into the lifestyle of macro nutrients and calories and gave you some understanding of things.