Have you been faithfully counting calories but still not losing the weight? If so—and you’ve got the belly bulge to show for it—the problem may lie in what you’re eating, not how much you’re eating. Learn how to bring a macro diet into your life, and lose weight the healthy, sustainable way!
What the Macros?
Macros, which refer to macronutrients, make up a complete diet and include fats, proteins and carbs. Other diets have jumped ahead in popularity, because ‘fats’ are bad, and ‘carbs’ are bad. Aren’t they? Well, as it turns out, healthy fats and carbs (and combined with protein) with each meal is the recipe for a satisfying diet, and portion control. You just need to know how to do it right.
photodune-6267340-calorie-kilograms-sport-diet-xsKnowing Your Number
If you’re just focused on counting calories, you may not get as much protein as you need. Protein has a low-calorie count per gram (at only 4 calories per gram) which means that you may fuel up on meat and dairy, without getting high nutrients elsewhere. As a beginner, you’ll need to figure out how many macros you need on a daily basis. Once you know what it is, you can determine that eating less than this amount per day will allow you to lose weight, while eating more than this per day will cause you to gain weight.
To find out your number, you have to factor in your age, gender, weight, activity level and muscle mass. Spend one week tracking what you normally eat per day. Write everything down in a food journal. If you aren’t gaining weight, this should tell you what your daily calorie intake currently is, and reduce it by 500 calories per day to start immediately losing weight.
Divide Up Your Number With Macronutrients
Your main nutrient groups (as mentioned above) are carbs, proteins and fats. Divide up your daily calories to a 40:40:20 system. 40 percent of your calories each day will go to carbs (complex, not simple carbs, as simple carbs will turn into sugar, and fat.) Another 40 percent of your calories will go to protein, and the remaining 20 percent of your calories will go towards fats. So, if you have a 2,000 calorie intake for the day, 800 of those calories would go towards carbs and another 800 would go towards protein. Want to increase your weight loss? Drop your macros down by 5 percent, and see the difference for yourself!