Breaking Down Your Macro Breakdown
You’re heading into your second week of tracking of your macros now! Hopefully you’re beginning to get the hang of how it all works and which foods contain which macros. In this article we’re going to explain exactly what each of your three macros are what they do for your body.
I like to think of protein as the foundation of your body. All of your cells and tissues are built from protein. Likewise, any damage done to those tissues (surgery, injury, weightlifting etc) require protein in order to repair and grow muscles and other tissues. In short, if you want muscle (bulking or toning) you need protein.
Protein is most commonly found in meat and eggs, but can be taken in through a variety of plant products. However, plant proteins are not complete proteins. Please keep in mind that some of your essential amino acids can ONLY be obtained through animal products. *If you are a vegetarian, we highly suggest taking a BCAA supplement, and considering at least occasionally consuming fish or eggs.*
Most people are not consuming enough protein per day and often, the meat or protein sources we consume are so high in fat that we aren’t eating enough to get the protein amount our bodies really need. Your meal plan is created to supply your body with the appropriate amount of protein each day to support the activities that you do. Below is a list of good, lean protein that we recommend:
- Top or bottom round steak (23 grams of protein per 3-ounce serving)
- Lean ground beef (18 grams per 3-ounce serving)
- Pork chops (26 grams per 3-ounce serving)
- Chicken breast (24 grams per 3-ounce serving)
- Turkey breast (24 grams per 3-ounce serving)
- Sockeye salmon (23 grams per 3-ounce serving)
- Yellow-fin tuna (25 grams per 3-ounce serving)
- Eggs or Egg Whites (6 grams per large egg)
Some other high-protein foods are:
- Some canned foods, like sardines, anchovies and tuna average around 22 grams of protein per serving
- Navy beans (20 grams per cup)
- Lentils (13 grams per quarter-cup)
- Quinoa (8 grams per 1-cup serving)
Perhaps the most demonized of all the macros, healthy fat is actually one of the most important things we consume. Fat is a necessary element that your body uses to absorb vitamins from your food. So eating all of those vegetables doesn’t do much unless you have a little fat to go with them. Fat is also what helps your body produce and regulate hormones. This means that fat will control your emotions, temperature regulation, sleep, sex drive, menstrual cycle, and weight. In addition, fat is essential to insulate your body and protect your organs from harm. We’ll dig deeper into which fats are good bad later, but for now, we’ve provided a list of some great options for fat!
- Avocado and Avocado Oil
- Coconut and Coconut Oil
- Grass-fed and/or Raw Butter
- Meat/Bacon Grease/Lard
- Egg Yolks
- Nuts and Seeds
- Nut and Seed Butters
- Olive Oil
- Sesame Oil
Carbs have recently taken a lot of flack in the nutrition world. From Atkins to Keto to Paleo, it has become a widely accepted truth that carbs make us fat. We’re here to debunk that myth. Carbs don’t make you fat, carbs give you ENERGY! However, if you’re taking in significantly more energy than you need AND NOT USING IT, your body will store it as fat. That’s why we’ve allotted a certain amount of carbohydrates per day based on how much energy you expend. We will dig into which kinds of carbs are best for your body in another blog, but for now, here’s a list of some great choices.
- All Vegetables
- All Fruit
- Well soaked and well cooked grains like rice & buckwheat
- All tuber vegetables (like potatoes, sweet potatoes, and yams)
- Gluten-free, Steal Cut Oats (oatmeal)
The Trinity of Food
If there’s one thing you glean from this post, I hope it’s this: EVERY macro is vitally important for your health and EVERY macro can be detrimental to your health and your weight-loss if consumed in excess. Stick to your target amounts and your body will begin to work like a well oiled, well fueled machine.