The Flexitarian Diet Series - What is a Flexitarian Diet?
What is Flexitarian Diet?
Defining Diet and Components of Flexitarian Diet
Diet plays an important function for the human body. It provides significant nutrients and energy components. Moreover, it also supports the cells and tissues that are performing vital functions.
You may have already read about different diets which are healthier and better for your body. There are hundreds of options available such as the Paleo diet, keto diet, detox diet, and raw food diet. But finding the ultimate solution is essential.
The Jackson Blatner flexitarian diet is a way of eating which involves plant-based foods. It does allow meat and dairy products, but in moderation, as compared to other diets. The term flexitarian comes from the combination of two phrases flexible and vegetarian.
One of the most popular dieticians Dawn Jackson introduced the flexitarian diet. The purpose was to support people in getting advantages from the simplest food components. The flexitarian diet plan is the third best diet for disease prevention. For long term health, it is the second best option available. Surprisingly, the diet is also highlighted as the easiest one to follow.
Vegetarians mostly reduce or limit the use of meat and sometimes other animal foods. On the other hand, vegans completely stop meat consumption including fish, eggs, milk, and all animal foods. People following flexitarian diet are not vegans or vegetarians. Because they consume animal food products, they are somewhat in the middle.
The flexitarian diet plan does not follow a particular set of rules or regulations. There are no recommended calorie and macro-nutrient consumption either. It is more about changing lifestyle in a complete and wholesome manner.
It is dependent on the following components:
Eating increased amounts of vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and legumes
Focusing on plant-based proteins
Being flexible while selecting food products
Incorporation of meat and animal products in an alternative manner
Consuming less processed food items and more natural types of foods
Restricting or eliminating sweetened and sugar-related food products from diet
The flexitarian diet recipes, as the name implies, are quite basic. It focuses on what to include in the diet, instead of limiting the intake. Due to this reason, it is a popular choice for many modern individuals wanting to lose weight.
The innovator of this diet has mentioned how to start eating proportional meals. Following the flex effect and other recommendations from the book, you can find options which work for you the best.
Overall, the purpose is to re-shape the way your body processes nutritive components. The flex effect will further elaborate on how the diet actually works!
What Are Flex Effects?
As the name implies, the diet is very simple, but there are some rules about how much meat you can add.
According to the explanations from the book, dieters who are new to the flexitarian diet should take beginner steps. The beginner flexitarian diet recipes refrain from meat consumption twice a week. The remaining five days, the amount of meat consumed should not exceed beyond 26 ounces (oz.) in total.
For your reference, a card-deck chicken portion or steak is approximately 3 ounces. On the contrary, a meat portion with the thickness and size of your hand measures in at about 4 to 6 ounces.
The next level, which is the advanced flexitarian diet, limits meat consumption more. It suggests that people should follow a plant-based diet four to five days in a week. The amount of meat allowed for this duration is only 18 ounces total for the remaining days.
The final level, advanced flexitarian diet recipes, reduces consumption of meat even more. Dieters have to consume fruits and vegetables for six days but only have 9 ounces of meat for the rest of the days.
If you are considering the amount of meat which an individual should take per week, using the following ratios will be effective:
Beginner level: 6 to 8 meat-free meals out of 21 meals every week
Advanced level: 9 to 14 meat-free meals out of 21 meals every week
Expert level: 15 or more meat-free meals out of 21 meals every week
These steps and measurements, planned out by Blatner, are quite unique. This is the reason why the flexitarian diet reviews stand out from other meat-inclusive diets. Although an individual on flexitarian diet prefers vegetables, being an omnivore they still eat as much meat as they want. There is no concept of making the major portions of their meals strictly vegetable based.
It is also significant to note that you can follow Jackson Blatner flexitarian diet routine on your own pace. You do not have to go meat-free right away, or bring in imbalanced amounts of fruits and legumes. Gradually changing the lifestyle and designating food products will be more beneficial.
Importance of Flexitarian Diet
Due to the fact that the flexitarian diet plan involves a group of food components instead of restricting, it is a popular choice for many. People who want to lose weight in a healthy manner can easily opt for it without worrying about the consequences.
The flexitarian diet reviews are always positive because it is a less strict version of a vegan or vegetarian diet. As long as you are not consuming anything unhealthy or damaging, cutting out meat can be constructive. You will most likely be filling your body with phytonutrients and antioxidants. These have multiple significant functions in the body such as prevention from heart diseases, stroke, diabetes type 2, and particular types of cancers. By following the low carb flexitarian diet, you are adding five different food groups into your eating routine. You are not taking anything away essentially. A proper five-week diet plan gives breakfast, dinner, snack, and lunch recipes through which you can gain energy. You can follow the plan as it is, or shift recipes from multiple sources to meet your requirements.
There is a rule involved with the process of food consumption if you really want to see positive results; three-four-five. Breakfast food selections should be about 300 calories, lunch should be 400 and dinner should be 500 calories. If you are taking snacks twice a day, they should be about 150 calories each. This comes up to a daily intake of 1500 calories. This division of calories provides suitable amount of energy for metabolism. You will not feel lethargic or tired. You will also be able to perform any form of workout or moderate physical activity if you are trying to lose weight.
The low carb flexitarian diet works well with people of different activity level, gender, weight and height. You can make changes along the way but the meal plan will still have fewer calories. If you stress on the plant-based aspect of this diet, eating a variety of vegetables, grains, and fruits will fulfill your appetite. It will also make you feel full on less carbs and fats contrary to what you may be accustomed to.
According to the information provided in the nutrition magazines and journals, vegetarians weigh 15% less than non-vegetarians. This information is present in a review of 87 previous researches, printed in Nutrition Reviews in 2006. The rate of obesity in flexitarian dieters is considerably low as well (about 0-6%), according to the research authors.
Studies and reviews continue to build on the evidence that is present on the low carb flexitarian diet. In another research, information from 25 different papers was present. These were published between 2000 and 2016 for the purpose of highlighting a semi-vegetarian diet. The analysis included randomized controlled trials, epidemiological studies, and clinical trials and half of them were dedicated to body weight. The findings, published in 2017, indicated that the body mass index of all participants following a non-vegetarian diet was the highest.
The Jackson Blatner flexitarian diet is quite feasible to follow. The author mentions that you do not have to gain perfection; you just have to follow the regime perfectly.