What are macronutrients and why do people count them?
Macronutrients are nutrients that we need in large quantities to provide us with energy in the form of calories. People commonly refer to them as “macros”, and they include protein, carbohydrates, and fat. Various foods contain different amounts of each!
Each macro affects your energy levels, immune health, metabolic function, and hormone production in different ways. Macros play a major role in your body composition and exercise recovery. And depending on how active you are and the types of physical activity you do, your performance will benefit from different amounts and ratios of macros in your diet.
This is why many people find it more beneficial to count their macros instead of simply tracking the total calories they eat. What exactly does “counting macros” entail?
Counting macros involves setting and hitting daily targets, in grams, for protein, carbs, and fat consumed. Your individual macro targets and ratio will depend on factors such as your body weight, goals, how active you are, and the types of exercise or sports you do. For example, an Olympic lifter and an ultra-marathoner will each benefit from eating vastly different levels of protein, carbs, and fat!
Like any other nutrition regimen, finding daily macro targets that work for you may take some trial and error. People aren’t predictable factors you can easily plug into an equation. Each person is unique! We all have unique goals and lifestyles we need our nutrition to work with. Additionally, some people tolerate certain macros better than others. This is why it’s beneficial to work with a nutrition coach! You’re much more likely to stick to counting your macros if you have someone to help take the guesswork out for you and to hold you accountable.
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