The Mighty Macronutrients
Have you heard people taking about measuring their macronutrients instead of calories lately? Not that calories aren't important but by getting substance in whole foods has been shown to to help with optimal help and getting better numbers on the scale.
A calorie is a a unit of measurement that represents the amount of energy your body gains upon consumption. It will depend on what type of calories you are taking in and if you are gravitating towards things that don't serve you it will have a negative impact on your health. By eating simple carbs and fats, such as pastries and cereals, you will absorb it quickly and store as fat. A lifestyle with an even balance of carbs, fats, and protein, as well as vitamins, minerals, and fibre, such as sweet potato, and whole grains will act as fuel for your body, keeping you full longer.
WHAT ARE MACRO NUTRIENTS?
Macronutrients or "macros" for short are your carbohydrates, proteins and fats which are 3 groups that all the whole foods you eat are divided into. Micronutrients are divided into minerals and vitamins that work together to create a balance with macronutrients. By making sure you consume the requires macronutrients into your diet you will then get the adequate vitamins and minerals needed daily. Having these two categories well balanced will give you the energy and mind focus needed to keep you fuelled throughout the day.
Why does my body need macronutrients?
Carbohydrates: They have been given a bad reputation because many people tend to reach for simple carbohydrates(cakes, white rice, potatoes) instead of the complex ones. (whole grain, vegetables) However, when you consume the healthy ones they are essential and much needed by your body to function. They keep your brain and muscles functioning at optimal levels. When consumed and broken down they provide a major energy source to fuel your everyday activities. 45-65 percent of your calories needs should be supplied by carbohydrates, depending on their goals and lifestyle. A trick to counting your carbohydrates is that they should be no more than the palm of your hand.
Fat: Another category that has often been given a bad reputation. We have this notion that the more fat you eat, the more fat you will put on. This isn’t necessarily true. We nee good fats for our body to function properly, they help with vitamin absorption. They also supply the body with the essential fatty acids that it doesn't make itself. Unsaturated fats are what we need in the body which are found in nuts, avocados, olive oil. Saturated fat which is found in meat and creams, while trans fat is found in some processed food, and fast food, are the culprits that need to be consumed in moderation. Fats give food the flavour and texture that we all enjoy and I good rule of thumb is too only add a thumb size amount of unsaturated fats to your meals.
Protein: So many of us do not get enough protein and we need it for so many reasons. Whether it be plant protein or animal protein, it breaks down in the gut into amino acids and utilized as building blocks. Protein is key to help with repairing tissue, like muscle bone and skin. We need it to support our immune system and is used as an energy source by the body. When carbohydrate and and fat storage is depleted, protein picks up the pace and allows our bodies to continue on with normal function. Using a closed fist will determine the amount of protein needed at a meal usually 5-8oz per meal but will depend on the number of meals and snacks consumed daily.
These are suggested serving guidelines and will vary from person to person as there are many factors involved. There are three categories that most people fall into: weight loss, muscle gain, or general maintenance. Your macro requirements will shift based your physical goals. There is no one set guidelines for each individual. If you would like to know more feel free to connect and I would be happy to help you on your journey.