All you DON’T know about Macros
Macros is a very shiny word used by lot of people in every day life but how much we actually know about our macros? There are lot of myths and misconceptions about macronutriets.
In this article I will explain all three macronutrients and its importance in our body.
All these three Macros have their own specific work. Let’s start with carbohydrates.
Carbohydrates are the primary energy source of the body. Means your body will need carbohydrates if you want to move well. Our body can get energy more easily from carbohydrates than proteins and fats. That’s why they are the primary source of energy.
Our digestive system breaks down carbohydrates in three simple forms.
> Fructose or
So here’s a takeaway. No matter what type of carbohydrates you eat it all breaks down to glucose. It doesn’t mean you can eat whatever you want. All whole wheat products are low G.I carb which is good for the body. White bread is high G.I. carb which is not good for the body.
whole wheat bread, sweet potatoes, potatoes, oats, rice etc. All are low G.I carbs which are good for your body. On the other hand white bread, sugar, artificial sweeteners, soft drinks, etc. All are high G.I carbs which are bad for your body.
Our Brain and central nervous system prefer glucose for fuel ( However, there is a backup system we will discuss it some other day). The minimum intake of 130 grams per day is recommended by the dietary guidelines advisory. It differs according to body size, age, gender, daily activities etc.
A highly active person will need more amount of daily carbohydrates. On the other hand physique athletes can benefit from low carb diet to promote rapid fat loss.
(Caution ⚠ : what physique athletes do as preparations of competition is NOT healthy.)
So we need enough amount of carbohydrates according to our lifestyle.
First of all, you need to understand is…
what is protein?
Protein is basically amino acids. Amino acids are the building blocks of our body. There are lots of amino acids in our body. Some of them are synthesized inside the body and some of them we have to take from the food. These amino acids make TEAMS do work in the body. These TEAMS are called PROTEINS. There lot of different teams (proteins) for a lot of different work.
So what work actually they do and why they are so important?
Most of us think proteins are important for muscle building/muscle recovery. But that’s not the only thing. Below is the list of the body functions in which we need proteins (amino acids) directly or indirectly.
💎 Our body needs hormones for better functionality of our organs systems. Most of these hormones are made up of PROTEINS (amino acids).
💎 Our body needs lots of enzymes to trigger certain functions. For example, digestive enzyme who does most important work of digestion is made up of PROTEINS.
💎 In the liver, amino acid groups are used to make energy, glucose, ketone bodies, cholesterol (a good one), and fatty acids. Means they all are made up of PROTEINS.
💎 Some of the part of amino acids goes directly to the bloodstream to make plasma component of the blood. It is called plasma amino acid pull. These amino acids take charge of our muscle recovery after the exercise session or heavy resistance training.
💎 Synthesis of neurotransmitters (most important) is also done by this plasma pull amino acids.
This list can go longer but I want to talk about how to consume the food so we can get all type of amino acids.
Different foods provide different amino acid profiles so they all are different in protein quality. Some foods have limited amino acid profiles while some have all essential amino acids. Though each food has it’s own unique proportion. So we can’t rely on the single food for our all amino acid (protein) requirements. We need to eat different foods that are rich in protein.
For example Dairy proteins, plant proteins, animal proteins. For vegetarians and vegans, it’s important to consume the different types of plant protein to fulfill their protein requirements.
The minimum required protein amount for a SEDENTARY and generally healthy adult is ‘0.8 g’ per kg of body weight. This means 55 g for a person of average weight 70 kg. This is minimum amount just to prevent deficiency of protein.
Individuals with High-intensity resistance training needs 1.6 to 2 g per kg of body weight. This means 110 to 135 g per for person of average weight 70 kg. This requirement can increase for physique athletes and professional bodybuilders.
Everyone hates FAT. Everyone wants to avoid fatty foods.
Are they really that bad?
Let’s check it out by below list of functions that are done by fats in our body.
- It helps in manufacture and balance of hormones.
- Fat does the work of formation of our brains and nervous systems.
- It forms important components inside the cell.
- It provides energy. It’s the most energy dense macronutrient.
- Without fat, transportation of vitamins A, D, E and K would not be possible.
You must be thinking like “Then why everyone tells us to stay away from fatty foods?”
Let me explain it in the story mode.
There was family named ‘FAT FAMILY’. The FAT family was a huge family here we will discuss some of the main characters of the family.
There were two brothers in the family.
1. Saturated fat
2. Unsaturated fat
Unsaturated fat has two kids.
1. Monounsaturated fat
2. Polyunsaturated fat
There are two other members of the family who are important in the story.
1. Omega-3 fatty acid
2. Omega-6 fatty acid
Our body is the workplace for this family. They all work together and all have their unique tasks in the body. Ultimately, if they all will be together then only they can work well and keep our body healthy. So here is a TRUTH. The ‘BAD’ fat and ‘GOOD’ fat theory is a myth. If we talk about natural fats there is no ‘BAD GUY’.
So what do we need to do to be healthy and stay away from the heart and chronic disease?
The answer is in the story. We have to BALANCE all type of fatty acids in our food. Below is the ratio of fatty acids we have to maintain to stay healthy.
– 1:1 for saturated and unsaturated fats
– 1:1 for monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats
– 1:1 for omega-3 and omega -6 fatty acids
Let me tell you what is actually bad for your body.
– Consuming high amount of saturated fat but and very low amount of unsaturated fat.
– Consuming high amount of omega-6 fatty acid and very low omega-3 fatty acid.
Above two conditions can take you close to heart disease and other more terrible situations. Another thing that you have to completely avoid is Trans fat. Trans fats are fats that are not natural fat. Hydrogenated vegetable oils are this type of fat. Things like hydrogenated butter, highly sugary items, some chocolates generally contain trans fat.
At the end it all comes down to one simple thing. Balance. Yes, you have to keep balance in every macros you put into your daily diet. All macros are essential for our body to function well. You have to keep changing the ratio of your macros according to your activity level of the day. That’s the key to optimum health and fitness for long term.
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