It is always a persistent question as to how much fat, carbs and protein you should be eating. Well well well, let us help you take a closer look at how a healthy diet should look like!
If you have heard of counting macros, though it was probably from a friend who lives to work out or someone who is neck deep into nutrition, macro dieting can actually benefit almost anyone who is looking to make smart food choices that fit their goals, irrespective of whether they are looking to lose weight, build muscle or maintain a healthy lifestyle.
If you believe proponents of the If it Fits Your Macros (or IIFYM) eating plan (also known as “flexible dieting“), you can eat anything you want and still lose weight without counting calories.
Table of Contents:
- Know About Macro Diet
- How is a Macro Diet?
- How Do You Calculate and Track Your Macro-nutrients?
- Start a Macro Diet Plan
- 6 Guiding Principles of Macro Dieting
- Does Counting Your Macros Help You Lose Weight?
All you have to do is count your macros. According to the IIFYM eating plan, if you stick to your daily macro goals, you will automatically consume fewer calories, thus helping you lose weight.
What Exactly Are Macro-nutrients?
So what are macro-nutrients exactly? Macro-nutrients are the three categories nutrients you eat most and provide you with most of your energy: protein, carbohydrates and fats.
What is not a macro-nutrient? The other aspects of your foods micro-nutrients are the vitamins and minerals your body needs in smaller amounts. It is best to stick with the less processed foods, and instead choose whole, fresh food.
#Macro-nutrient -1 Carbohydrates:
Fill your plate with healthy carbs, including leafy greens, whole grains and root veggies. A few good picks: broccoli, asparagus, cauliflower,, dark leafy greens, oatmeal, sweet potatoes, potatoes and quinoa.
# Macro-nutrient – 2 Protein:
You need plenty of protein but don’t go crazy ordering greasy burgers and wings. Instead, choose: fatty fish (salmon, chicken, eggs and nuts).
# Macro-nutrient – 3 Fat:
Getting plenty of healthy fats is important for healthy hormone levels and metabolism. Foods high in essential fatty acids include coconut oil, olive oil, avocado, almonds, brazil nuts and macadamia nuts.
What is a Macro Diet?
There are three macro-nutrients that make up every bite of food you eat: protein, carbohydrates, and fat. While many foods contain all of these macro-nutrients, the focus is more toward one or two of them.
For instance, meat is loaded with protein, bread is mostly carbohydrates, and olive oil is predominantly fat. Your body needs all three in some capacity to function.
You can lose weight by setting a goal for exactly how many grams of protein, carbohydrates, and fat to eat per day.
Unlike most traditional diets, you don’t have to count calories, and unlike low-carbs or low-fat diets, you don’t need to to eliminate your favorite foods, like potatoes or pasta. In theory, you can eat anything you want under the this plan, provided it fits into your macro count.
How is a Macro Diet Similar to and Different from Other Diets?
The macro diet emphasizes on the value of whole foods, rather than processed foods.
Additionally, it shares some commonality with Weight Watchers and calorie counting because you do need to track your intake and stay within certain ranges.
On the other hand, the macro diet is different from other diets because it’s not a one-size-fits-all approach to dieting. Everyone starts with a target macro ratio for example, a macro ratio of 50% carbohydrates, 25% protein and 25% fat.
An online calculator or a nutritionist will help you determine your macro ratio based on your body type, goals, activity level and medical history. With a macro diet, you’re not meant to be depriving your body; you’re meant to be feeding it ideal nutrition that makes it more efficient.
How Do You Calculate and Track Your Macro-nutrients?
The tricky thing about macro-nutrients is that the amount of each you should be eating can vary drastically from person to person.
Your perfect amount is called your “macro-nutrient ratio.”As we mentioned, ideal macro ratios depend on your height and weight, your activity level, your age, and your goal.
For someone just getting started on this diet, it is a good idea to meet with a Registered Dietitian to determine the macro-nutrient breakdown that you are currently consuming and discuss your goals.
Your dietitian can then help determine the best breakdown for you and guide you on how to make this lifestyle transition. You can talk to our expert Possible Nutritionist for more information. The first consultation is on us. Click here to avail.
How to Start a Macro Diet Plan?
As you begin your macro diet plan, a food scale will probably be helpful, so you can see exactly how big your portions are.
Once you’ve used the food scale for a while, you’ll probably get good at eyeballing your favorite foods to log portion size into your tracking app.
6 Guiding Principles of Macro Dieting
- Add more protein if you’re hungry, as it is the most satiating nutrient. More fiber is also filling.
- If you’re tired, add more fibrous veggies to ensure sufficient energy from carbs.
- Lower your carbohydrate intake, especially with dinner, if you’re not losing weight.
- Keep yourself full with good protein and fiber to suppress the sugar craving.
- If you are losing weight too fast, add 5 to 6 bites of starch, such as sweet potato, oatmeal or squash, with one meal per day.
- Add more protein ideally, an extra 5-6 bites per day, if losing muscles along with strength training and related workouts.
Does Counting Your Macros Help You Lose Weight?
Focusing on the right balance of protein and carbs and fat while allowing yourself some freedom to eat candy or fun foods now and then is a good approach.The focus should be always on healthy eating allowing a cheat day once or twice.
Remember that food quality still matters and should not be compromised. Vegetables, which are full of disease-fighting antioxidants and fiber, will always be better for you than chips or cookies, which are essentially empty calories.
Counting your macros or macro diet is a practical approach to weight maintenance and the quality of your diet is still one of the most important factors.
Also,adherence is the most important thing for any diet to be successful. It is important to understand that flexible diets allow you to lose weight or have success while eating a much wider range of foods. The first consultation is on us. Book your FREE CONSULTATION with a Possible Nutritionist!