"Macro” is short for macronutrient. They're the three categories of nutrients you eat the most and provide you with most of your energy: protein, carbohydrates and fats. So when you're counting your macros, you're counting the grams of proteins, carbs or fat that you're consuming.
How many calories are in a macro?
Proteins = 4 calories per gram
Carbohydrates = 4 calories per gram
Fats = 9 calories per gram!
So be mindful when consuming Fats as they are the most calorically dense!
Can I consume fruit while dieting?
Fruits are an excellent source of essential vitamins and minerals, and they are high in fiber. Fruits also provide a wide range of health-boosting antioxidants.
Its important to be mindful of the sugar (fructose) content in fruit and not go overboard!
My top 3 picks would have to be:
Blueberries- Packed with antioxidants and high in fiber, vitamin C, vitamin K and manganese
Pineapples-Contain bromelain, a mixture of enzymes known for its anti-inflammatory properties and ability to digest protein
Apples- Apples are low in calories and high in fiber which make them very filling and a great way to curb your appetite and leave you satisfied!
Are all Carbs created equal?
NO! Not all carbs are created equal.
There are many different types of carbohydrate-containing foods, and they vary in health benefits and the way our bodies process them, break them down and utilize them.
Knowing the difference between “simple” versus “complex, or “whole” versus “refined" is the key here.
Simple or refined carbs have been processed and had the natural fiber removed or changed and tend to cause spikes in blood sugar levels, which leads to a subsequent crash that can trigger hunger and lead to food cravings. They’re usually also lacking in essential nutrients. In other words, they’re “empty” calories.
Complex or whole carbs are unprocessed and contain the fiber found naturally in the food and don’t cause the same spikes and dips in blood sugar levels., Whole food sources of carbohydrates are loaded with nutrients.
Examples of complex/whole carbs include:
Example of simple/refined carbs include:
other items made with white flour
So where does that leave us? I like to eat complex carbohydrates in my pre workout meal bc they digest slower and will help give me energy throughout my workout. For my post workout meal I like simple carbs like white rice because its fast and easy to digest and will provide me with the anabolic insulin spike I ant post workout!
How much muscle you have and how lean you are will also greatly effect how well you can handle certain carbs and how much.
The best carbohydrate for you is the one that you digest the best and provides you with sustained energy.
Should I count Macros or Calories?
It can be said that counting calories is useful for weight loss and counting macros is better suited for fat loss and changes in body composition.
Weight loss is the result of a calorie deficit - which causes your body to tap into muscle stores and body fat stores for the fuel/energy your body needs. This will result in weight loss.
Fat loss can be targeted by strategically tracking your macronutrients and taking advantage of the way your body responds to these key nutrients. Each macro plays a unique role in persevering muscle and aiding in fat loss. The right balance of all three is crucial when becoming a muscle building, fat burning machine
So when it comes to building muscle and lowering body fat, I recommend counting macros over counting calories alone. By counting macros you can make sure you are fueling your workouts efficiently and feeding your body what it needs, when it needs it!