For many people, the thought of tracking your food sounds terrible. And what are macros anyway? Macros are protein, fats, and carbohydrates that your body uses for energy and building and repairing the body. What is left over is stored as fat. These macros make up your calories.
Protein– Protein is broken down into amino acids and then used to repair and build muscle
Carbohydrates– Non-essential and used for energy and recovery
Fats– Essential and used for hormone recovery
Why do you need to track your calories or macros? Most people do not know how many calories they should be eating daily and have no idea how many calories they are taking in daily. In order to know how many calories you are taking in, you are going to need to track your calories and macros. In order for you to intuitively eat later on, you need to learn what calories are in the foods that you consume and what the macro content is.
Calories are king in the world of diet and nutrition. We know through a few studies that dieting in most cases is as simple as calorie in and calorie out. In other cases, there are other issues that need to be addressed such as hormone health. If we have a calorie deficit, we should lose weight and if we have a surplus we should gain.
So why macros? We could just look at calories and get results from a weight loss standpoint but that doesn’t mean healthy weight loss. So, when we also look at the macros, we know that protein is the building block for muscle and carbs and fats are fuel sources. Fats are also good for hormone recovery.
If we just looked at calories, we could lose weight by eating heavy carbohydrates and some protein and fats. As long as there is a deficit, we should see weight loss. But if we were looking at our diet from a health perspective, we would not be very healthy with a carbohydrate diet and little protein and fat. So, macros become very important to track to make sure we are getting the proper amount of all three macros.
We must track on a consistent basis in order to know what calories we are taking in and so that we can begin to learn how to intuitively eat. Over time, as we learn what foods have what amounts of calories and macros, we can start to know without tracking what amount of calories we take in daily. This will take time and effort on your part but, your diet and nutrition should be a lifelong journey.