What are your macronutrients?
Macronutrients consist of protein, carbohydrates and fats, which are all processed differently – the processing of which is called the thermic effect.
What is the thermic effect?
When digesting your macronutrients (protein, carbohydrates, fats) the body will use up calories depending on the food that is being eaten. For example, when digesting protein, such as meat, eggs or fish, 20-30% of calories are burned. When digesting carbohydrates such as bread, rice or potato, 5-15% of calories are burned, and when digesting fats, such as avocado, nuts or olive oil, 0-5% of calories are burned.
Therefore, as you have just read, a protein calorie is NOT the same as a carbohydrate calorie.
The total number of calories you eat in a day DOES matter for body composition (shape). If you are overeating you will gain weight, but whether that weight results in fat or muscle gain depends on what you are eating.
If you aren’t overeating, simply altering the macronutrient ratios to manage insulin and the hormone response of food can lead to fat loss and significantly improve body shape.
Why balanced hormones matter?
The human body is very complex. We have many different hormones and they all have their own role within the body. Numerous things can impact how well your hormones work.
•Too much exercise/exercising when stressed
•Poor food choices
•Poor breathing technique
Day to day we need to make sure we are keeping all these points balanced to keep our hormones working as efficiently as possible for us. Happy hormones = happy healthy you.
To lose fat, build muscle or maintain weight, the daily ratio of fats, proteins and carbohydrates must be considered. Why not write a diary of what you are eating daily and review it? Once you can see daily what you are eating on paper, you will be able to work out what to change or adjust to suit your goal (fat loss, muscle gain, maintenance). Here are some general guidance options:
•Fat Loss Goal/Ratio – high protein, high fats, low carbohydrates.
•Muscle Gain Goal/Ratio – high protein, high carbohydrates, moderate fats.
•Maintenance Goal/Ratio – moderate fats, protein and carbohydrates.
These ratios are accumulated over a day of eating so have a look at the images to mimic your plate for breakfast, dinner and tea to achieve your own specific goal.
I find these ratios a great guide to keep myself on track with my nutrition and this has a positive impact on my gym sessions and my boxing training as I feel more energised, have more focus and good recovery.
Find out more hints and tips on nutrition and fitness on Beth’s Facebook page.