Flexible dieting and cleaning eating “diets” are being talked about everywhere and I don’t see that changing anytime soon. They are talked about in a way that you can only stick with one of them at a time. If you are a flexible dieter you most certainly aren’t a clean eater. If you are a flexible dieter you only eat donuts, pizza and ice cream. If you are a clean eater you only eat plants. This is of course an exaggeration, but does it really have to be like that, though?
Let’s go back and talk about what exactly flexible dieting is and what clean eating is. Flexible dieting is where you have a “bank” of macronutrients (protein, fat carbs) for each day and you can eat anything you want as long as the macro breakdown fits in your daily “bank” of calories/macros. Each macro has a caloric value to it.
Protein = 4 calories per gram
Fat = 9 calories per gram
Carbs = 4 calories per gram
So, the way flexible dieting works is like this. Say I want to eat ice cream for breakfast. I will entire this into my food tracker which will subtract the calories, protein, carbs and fat from my daily macro bank and leave me with the remaining macros that I still have to consume that day. The day goes on, I continue to eat whatever I feel like and continue to watch my macro bank get smaller until I have fully consumed my entire days worth of food. By this time, your food tracker should show you that you have 0 grams of protein, fat and carbs left. Successful day. Flexible dieting gets the rep of eating sugary processed foods because technically you can eat those things all day every day (which sadly, some people do), as long as you don’t go over your macro bank for the day. In order to follow this “diet” you need a set macro breakdown set for you and your specific goals. This is somewhat of a complicated process and I wouldn’t trust any macro calculator out there. If you are interested in knowing what your macros are, shoot me an email or contact a macro coach.
Clean eating is using more of your intuition when knowing when and how much to eat. You also are eating “clean” foods. Everyone has a different list of ” clean” foods but it is majority fruits, veggies, lean meats and greens that make up your daily consumption of food. Instead of macronutrients being the highlight, clean eating really highlights getting in the necessary micronutrients of vitamins and minerals so your body functions correctly. You go about your day eating when you are hungry and only eating nutrient dense foods which I mentioned will majority be fruits, veggies, greens, lean meats and sometimes whole grains.
Do you really just have to be a flexible dieter or just have to be a clean eater? Hell to the no! That is the stupidest thing I have ever heard. The best approach to living a healthy lifestyle through food is finding what works specifically for you. This will take trial and error but once you figure it out, you will be so much more happy and satisfied when it comes to eating and living a healthy lifestyle. I follow a good mix of these two. I would say 90-95 percent of the time I eat clean nutrient dense foods and throw in a treat here and there when I feel like it. I also track my macros every day. Through experimentation and trial and error, I have been able to find what best fuels my body through a process that works for me. I don’t deprive myself of treats because I am not just a clean eater. I am not nutrient deprived because I choose the healthiest options and fuel my body with superfoods the majority of the time. This gives me balance and I don’t ever feel deprived. That’s just me. It is up to you to find your process. It might be a full flexible dieting plan, it might be a complete clean eating only plan, it might be a mix of the two or hell, it might be something completely different.
I just love crockpot recipes. They just make life that much easier! With the weather changing and getting cooler I thought it was the perfect time for a chili recipe that can be used throughout the course of fall and winter. Once you have your veggies chopped and diced, this recipe is pretty dang simple.
Crockpot Turkey Chili
- 2 lbs ground turkey*
- 1 yellow onion, diced
- 1 green pepper, diced
- 1 yellow pepper, diced
- 4 cloves garlic
- 4 oz baby bella mushrooms, diced
- 2 cans (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes
- 1 can (8 oz) tomato sauce
- 2 tblsp chili powder
- 3 tblsp paprika
- 1 tblsp groun cumin
- 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
- 2 tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp ground black pepper
- Add all ingredients to a crockpot and stir well breaking up the turkey as much as possible.
- Cook on low for 8 hours.
*For additional flavor, brown the turkey in a skillet on the stove before adding to the crockpot