White bread. Wheat bread. Wonder bread.
Whole grain. Multigrain. Sprouted grain.
Sourdough. Pumpernickel. Rye.
Bread baskets. Bread boards. Breadsticks. Breadcrumbs!!! 🙂
Cornbread. Gingerbread. Shortbread.
While it’d be fun for me to go on, I’m confident I’ve made my point. Everywhere we go . . .
We Are Surrounded By Carbohydrates.
In the ultra busy and fast paced world we live in, it’s quick and easy to make a sandwich, grab a bag of chips or stash a “healthy” granola bar in our bag. Carbohydrates have become our go to macro.
Macro what, you ask? MacroNutrient. Let me give you a quick Macro 101 lesson, but first, let me explain why this is the first of several posts on this topic.
I can’t think of a more crucial time for people to focus on their overall health and work to put themselves in the best possible position for a (quick and easy) recovery should they get sick.
I am disheartened by:
1) The lack of focus and lack of information being disseminated regarding preventive health measures.
2) The incentives being used to promote vaccinations that directly contribute to the main conditions which prove to be most detrimental to recovery, like diabetes and obesity. The end of this post includes two example advertisements of incentives that make my blood boil.
Many of the underlying conditions detrimental to recovery are the result of poor nutrition. The purpose of this series is to inspire, inform and make a positive impact on someone’s health and wellness. I’m considering it my Patriotic duty 😌
DISCLAIMER: This post is not a message that “carbs are bad.” Those words will never come from my mouth. (Or fingertips!) I will say there is a BALANCE of what our bodies need and it is very easy to overindulge and take more than we need from carbohydrates.
O.K. – Back to Macro 101!
Our bodies require two types of nutrients: Micronutrients and Macronutrients
MACRO-nutrients are needed in LARGE quantities for energy and to help maintain our bodies systems and structure.
There are 3 types of macronutrients:
There’s a hidden 4th as well: Alcohol
(In an effort not to bite off more than we can chew, we’ll talk about the other Macros and Micronutrients another day.)
Most Americans are consuming excess amounts of carbs and fat and not enough protein.
How much is enough? How do you know if you’re getting enough?
First, I’ll review the amount of protein an average person should be consuming on a daily basis. Then, I’ll show you how to discover what you’re currently consuming. Lastly, I’ll hook you up with some great protein sources to help incorporate into your diet.
HERE WE GO!
We’ll define the average person as:
- Someone who is NOT completely sedentary
- Someone who is NOT training for an endurance event or an Olympic weightlifting competition
- Someone who is NOT looking to “bulk up”
- Someone who is NOT pregnant or nursing
- Someone who does NOT have kidney disease, liver disease or diabetes
We’re talking about Joe Schmo and everyday Dick and Janes. We’re talking about the basic RDA guidelines.
With that being said, the average person needs about .8 grams of protein per every kilogram of body weight.
The formula would look like this for someone who weighs 150lbs:
1kg = 2.2lbs
150/2.2 = 68
This person would need a minimum of 68 grams of protein per day. Most of us need much more than this, but again, this is the basic formula and general guideline you will find if you research.
This is a decent place to start if you fall within the majority of people who don’t get enough protein. If you’re in this category, I can safely assume you also don’t know how much protein you’re currently getting or how to figure that out.
Don’t worry, you are not alone. The good news is that as long as you can read and you know how to count, you can easily start to learn how much protein you are consuming in comparison to what you need.
Next lesson: Reading Labels 101
For the purpose of sticking to the subject, protein, that is the only Macro we will look at. Go grab anything in your home that has a food label. Go…..go now……and come right back with it!
- Look at the label and look at the SERVING SIZE. This is usually at the top of the label. If you’re looking at a granola bar, the serving size is likely 1 bar. If you are looking at something that is not individually wrapped, it will likely read one of the following: 1 serving = 1/2 cup or 1 serving = xxxx amount of the item – chips/crackers/pickles/shrimp/etc.
- Find the Macronutrients on the label. While all 3 (protein, carbs and fat) will be listed, among other information, we are only going to look at Protein for now. Read how many grams of protein are in your product. This amount will always be for 1 serving.
- You now have the information to understand how many grams of protein are in 1 serving of the food in your hands.
That wasn’t too painful, right? As a health coach, this is the information I would first teach to my nutrition clients, except with customized macro numbers based off of their current lifestyle, overall health and individual goals.
I challenge you to take a look at your labels this week and report back your findings. While looking at all 3 macros is most beneficial, let’s just start here, with protein. When it comes to learning and making changes, baby steps (or baby bites in this case!) will yield you better results over time.
Feel free to also post any questions you have!
Here is the promised list of foods containing protein to incorporate into your diet.
I’d also like to suggest my favorite bread. It pairs with everything, is readily available wherever you go and requires zero prep work.
It is The Bread of Life.
“Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.” Matthew 4:4
In my humble opinion, an incentive to do something for your health should not be a reward for something that goes directly against your health.I love Fair Food and Krispy Kreme just as much as anyone, but no matter how you flip it, it’s far from healthy.
If you like this post, please share The Breadcrumb Trail with your family, friends, pets and neighbors 🙂
May God bless and protect our country and everyone reading.