The first time I came across the idea of portion fix, I was worried it was some sort of fad diet or dodgy quick fix. All I knew was that it’s based on eating food from little colourful boxes, which seemed odd.
Actually, once I looked into it – and then tried it for myself – I quickly realised that it’s not weird at all. It’s not based around cutting out entire food groups or eating strange things or starving yourself or anything else that so frustrates me with a lot of diets.
Instead, the system simply makes it straightforward to do four things that are the cornerstones of all sensible diets but that can be complicated:
- portion control/calorie management
- balancing macros
- cutting out the crap
- eating more of the good stuff
It’s a little tricky to get used to, but the principle is pretty simple. Each box is a different size should be filled with food from a different food group:
Green – Vegetables
Purple – Fruit
Red – Protein
Yellow – Carbs
Blue – healthy fats
Orange – seeds and dressing
Depending on your calorific needs and your goals (gain weight, lose weight, maintain weight) you eat a set number of each colour of box each day.
For the avoidance of doubt, contrary to what a work friend of mine thought, when she saw me bringing my boxes to work, you emphatically do not only eat one box of each colour a day. That way starvation would lie!
Sticking to this forces you to eat exactly the way I prefer: tons of fruit and veg, lots of lean protein, reduced (but definitely not non-existent) carbs, and some good fats. Whenever I do this programme, it’s not just about what I cut out, it’s about what I add in. You feel like you’re eating absolutely loads, because even on the lowest calorie programme, there’s so much fruit, veg, and protein to get through. When I’m not doing this programme, my go-to alternative is straightforward calorie counting combined with generic healthy eating. But it’s so hard to get the carbs/protein/fat ratio right that way.
I once read that the most successful diets – at least in the short-term – are those, like Slimfast, based around only drinking shakes. To me, that makes sense. If all you can have is three shakes a day, then unless you completely crack, that’s all you’re going to have. Whereas if you can have whatever you want, as long as it’s fairly healthy and calorie controlled, there’s a high risk of you having a slightly bigger portion, or saying yes to just a small slice of cake afterwards. But who wants to live on shakes on nothing else? Not me, that’s for sure. I like my breakfast Shakeology, but I wouldn’t fancy it for lunch and dinner too. The portion fix boxes, however, give you a similar sort of benefit to that sort of diet while still allowing you to eat proper food. If it’s in a box, you can eat it. If it isn’t, you can’t. It’s that simple, and it’s surprisingly easy to stick to.
Portion Fix was originally designed to work with 21 Day Fix, and the combination of the two is an amazing way to get ready for a holiday or big event. But really, it works well with any exercise programme.