Do you have to live in a calorie deficit for optimal fat loss results ?
The answer is no, if you want to achieve long term results. Its a case of the tortoise winning the race. The problem is that people want instant results and are willing to try anything, which can lead to
❌Non sustainable results
❌Poor relationship with food
This is not to say a large calorie deficit is not beneficial, it absolutely can be, when used correctly and as part of a strategic nutrition plan.
What about the bigger picture? What about 1 year from now? What about 5 years from now? Going through periods of cycling your calories, including a maintenance phase and moderate to aggressive calorie deficits will approve dietary adherence , and therefore better results. Manipulating your calorie intake in this way will allow you to
✅Vary food sources
✅Enjoy social occasions
✅Have more freedom
✅Avoid metabolic adaptation
✅Shift your focus from analysing the scales (healthy mindset)
What about NOT living in a state of slowly starving yourself and increasing your calorie intake to enable you to
✅Improve body composition
All of the above are much harder to achieve when living in a calorie deficit. I have even seen clients lose weight from increasing calorie intake…why? Not through magically increasing their metabolism 😉 but increasing energy output as they are no longer walking around like a zombie 🧟♂️
To summarise, think about the bigger picture when wanting to lose body fat. Make it fit your lifestyle, plan ahead and make it work. For example, maybe switch to maintenance calories while you’re on holiday or focus efforts on building muscle instead of obsessing over scale weight.
Fat loss is not all about poverty macros, but lifestyle, behaviours and adherence are just as important.