Nourish November: November 22- Track Your Macros
Updated: Nov 28, 2020
Have you ever used an app to track your daily food and water intake? I like to use MyFitnessPal. It helps to see the caloric intake, but you can also track your macronutrients (macros). These are carbohydrates, fats, and proteins, and they are the main sources of energy for our bodies. When you track your macros, you can see where your daily calories are coming from. If you have the right ratio of the three, then you are fueling your body with what it needs.
Carbohydrates can have a bad reputation, but they are necessary for brain function. To give some perspective on macro amounts, my ratio for daily carbohydrates is 50%. It's important to take in complex carbohydrates, such as: sweet potatoes, bananas, wheat bread, oatmeal, etc.
Protein is important for many processes in the body, including bone and muscle growth. Protein is also involved in almost all activities in our cells. My daily ratio of protein is 20% of my calories. That may seem low, but it comes out to 99g. That can be hard for me to take in every day. I've learned to be creative to help increase my protein intake. I have dairy milk in my oatmeal, a protein bar after working out, and I try to eat eggs daily.
Fats can also be seen in an unfair light, but they are necessary for cellular growth, energy, protecting our organs, and temperature regulation. My ratio for daily fats is 30%. Some healthy fats that I like are olive oil, avocado, and nuts. I've heard it's good to drink milk with some fat in it because it helps you absorb the nutrients. The same is true for why your salad dressing should have a little fat in it.
It may seem daunting to track your macros, but if you use a free app, like MyFitnessPal, you can determine the correct ratio based on your body weight and activity level. I've learned a lot about how much proteins, fats, and carbohydrates are in food, and it's benefited my body. Since tracking my macros, I've learned to try to eat some protein with every meal and have protein and some carbohydrates 30-60 minutes after a workout. You may be surprised how good your body feels after you start eating the correct macro ratio.
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