This week we are going to ‘Geek Out’, so make sure you eat your wheaties before diving in! Make sure to weigh and measure them though, or it defeats the purpose of this series! 😂
The purpose of this series is to paint a picture of the best macronutrient balance for our bodies. We’ve learned the daily percentage of calories that should come from the three macronutrients and we’ve taken a close look at how many grams of protein the average person should consume. This week we are going to put it all together and take the same look at carbohydrates and fat!
Let’s recap the main points of Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3 before we continue 🤓
✅ The 3 macronutrients – Protein, Carbs, Fat
✅ The formula for the minimum amount of protein a person should be getting
✅ How to read a food label to determine how much protein the source contains
✅ A respectable list of protein sources to incorporate into your diet
✅ 10 functions of protein in the body
✅ The Thermic Effect of Food (TEF)
✅ How many burpees you have to do to burn 260 calories 🤯
✅ Where calories come from and the correlation between macronutrients and calories
✅ The ideal allocation of macros and calories to support optimal health and balance in our bodies
1 gram of Protein = 4 calories
1 gram of Carbohydrate = 4 calories
1 gram of Fat = 9 calories
For maximal metabolic efficiency and overall health, caloric distribution on a daily basis would look like this:
40% of calories from CARBOHYDRATES
30% of calories from PROTEIN
30% of calories from FAT
Ok, let’s move on!
As I mentioned in Part 1: We Are Surrounded By Carbohydrates.
In a way this is a good thing because it’s the macro our body requires the largest percentage of calories from.
The not so good thing is the ease of which we can overindulge in this macro (along with fat).
Most Americans have no problem achieving their carb and fat macros, but often under eat the amount of protein they should have.
As we did with protein in Part 1, this week we’ll look at the amount of carbohydrates and fat that is ideal for our bodies.
Reminder: These amounts are for an average person.
Before we look at the actual calculation, let’s understand WHY carbohydrates take the top spot in overall percentage of calories.
Carbohydrates are our bodies main (and preferred) source of energy. They’re the fuel our bodies require for our central nervous system as well as our muscles. Ever wonder why runners “carb load” in the days leading up to a long distance race? They need to make sure their tank is full for hours of running!
The reputation of carbohydrates has steadily declined over the years. Even though carbs produce and store energy in our bodies, spare protein and help metabolize lipid, (aka, fat) people love to place them in the forbidden food group.
Consuming too many carbohydrates in your diet, especially processed carbs, can lead to negative side effects ranging from fatigue, to weight gain, to chronic disease. Most folks care more about the extra pounds than anything else. Weight gain from carbohydrates happens when our cells get more glucose (sugar) than they need and our bodies convert the excess into fat.
How amazing would it be if instead the glucose converted into lean muscle mass?
I know. Life’s not fair.
Eventually, a person consuming too many carbohydrates will face obesity, one of the main conditions which has shown to be most detrimental to recovery from a virus 🦠
Note: Calories in vs calories out is always the measure of keeping body weight balanced. A person becomes obese from consuming more calories than their body needs. The calories do not necessarily have to come from carbs. It is rare though that someone becomes obese from consuming too much protein.
It’s easier for most people to just avoid something altogether rather than learn management and balance. Many folks don’t even realize which foods are carbohydrates.
Fun Fact: All fruits and vegetables are carbohydrates. They are (for the most part) single macro foods, meaning, no protein or fat, just good ol’ carbohydrates in every delicious bite! 🍎🍌🍑
It previously cracked me up when someone would tell me they didn’t eat carbs, as they ate an apple or bit into a banana. I don’t laugh anymore though as I’ve realized just how confused people are.
Carbohydrates are not the problem. Lack of information and understanding is the problem. Too much information is also the problem. This is an actual picture I took at Barnes & Noble one day. It’s no wonder there is so much confusion out there 🤦🏻♀️
Like everything else in life, our carbohydrate intake must be balanced. Let’s see what these numbers look like for a person consuming 2,000 calories a day.
Knowing that the ideal allocations of macronutrients is 40% carbs, 30% protein and 30% fat, and knowing that 1 gram of Protein and 1 gram of Carbohydrate = 4 calories, and 1 gram of Fat = 9 calories, the calorie breakdown for a 2,000 calorie per day diet would look like this:
600 calories from protein
600 calories from fat
800 calories from carbs
Again, most of us are somewhat familiar with counting calories, but counting macros still isn’t quite as cool. Let’s look at this from a MACRO view vs a CALORIE view.
600 calories from protein = 150 grams of protein (600c / 4g)
600 calories from fat = 67 grams of fat (600c / 9g)
800 calories from carbs = 200 grams of carbs (800c / 4g)
I know this may seem like a lot to digest 🤣
Stick with me though, I promise it’s not as scary as it looks.
Counting calories and counting macros is similar because you are tracking numbers. Counting macros is just counting the source of your calories.
At this point, you might be asking for the answer to which method is more advantageous. The answer is simple: JESUS
Just kidding, but not really. He is the answer to everything, but the specific answer is: COUNTING MACROS because of the BALANCE ⚖️
Having the proper balance and combination of the 3 macronutrients results in the following:
✅ Our bodies functioning at max potential
✅ A more favorable body composition
✅ Consuming a wide variety of micronutrients
As I mentioned in Part 3, God created all of us in His image, but He made us in a way that is both unique and special on an individual basis. Therefore, nutrition plans should be tailored to YOUR specific needs.
The individual factors that determine the amount of calories you should consume and/or the best macro-based plan include height, weight, age, activity level, overall health and your goals.
If you’d like to get a better idea of the calories and macros YOU need, feel free to message me HERE.
For an online calculator, I recommend using THIS SITE.
If you really want to geek out, check out THIS GUIDE.
I’ve received a ton of great questions that I’ll be answering in next week’s post. Until then, please:
✔️ Keep the questions coming.
✔️ Share The Breadcrumb Trail with your family and friends.
✔️ Pray for the health of our Nation.
As always, thanks for following!
May God bless and protect everyone reading.