Why Is It Important To Track Your Macros?
Fitness can be generally divided into two main categories: fat loss and muscle gain. Fat loss is about creating a calorie deficit, which means you’re eating fewer calories than you’re burning. On the other hand, muscle gain is achieved by eating more calories than you burn (creating a surplus).
If you are stuck tracking your macros, this blog post is for you.
Macros: What Are They?
When it comes to fat loss or muscle gain, both require a strategic approach to be successful. This is where tracking your macros comes in.
Macros are the three macronutrients that make up the calories in the foods we eat: carbohydrates, proteins, and fats.
Each macro has a different calorie content:
1 gram of carbohydrate = 4 calories
1 gram of protein = 4 calories
1 gram of fat = 9 calories
Difference Between Tracking Calories and Macros
Now that we know what macros are let’s dive into the difference between tracking calories and macros.
The main difference between tracking calories and macros is that when you track your macros, you also consider the type of food you’re eating, not just the number of calories.
For instance, if you’re eating 200 calories worth of carrots, that’s not the same as 200 calories worth of cake. So even though they have the same calorie content, the cake will impact your blood sugar levels much differently than the carrots.
This is because they have different macro profiles:
Carrots: 12 grams of carbs, 2 grams of protein, 0 grams of fat
Cake: 26 grams of carbs, 4 grams of protein, 9 grams of fat
As you can see, even though they have the same calories, the cake has over twice the amount of carbs and fat as the carrots. This is why tracking your macros can be much more effective than just tracking your calories.
Why Is It Important To Track Your Macros?
There are several reasons why tracking your macros can be beneficial, whether you’re trying to lose fat or build muscle.
1. It Holds You Accountable
If you’re trying to lose fat, tracking your macros can help hold you accountable for consuming calories. Awareness of how many calories you’re eating makes you less likely to overeat and sabotage your fat-loss efforts.
2. It Helps You hit Your Goals
If you’re trying to build muscle, tracking your macros can help ensure you’re eating enough calories to reach your goals. Eating enough calories is essential to build muscle because if you don’t, your body will start breaking down muscle tissue for energy.
3. It Keeps You on Track
Even if you’re not trying to lose fat or build muscle, tracking your macros can still be beneficial. It can help keep you on track with your eating habits and ensure you get the proper nutrients.
4. It Can Help You Avoid Binge Eating
If you’re prone to binge eating, tracking your macros can help you avoid it. Binge eating often occurs when people feel like they’re restricting themselves too much. By tracking your macros, you can see that you’re still consuming a good amount of calories, which can help prevent binge eating.
5. It Can Help You Make Better Food Choices
You’re more likely to make better food choices when you track your macros. This is because you’re aware of the calorie and nutrient content of the foods you eat. You’re also more likely to pay attention to portion sizes when tracking your macros.
6. It Teaches You about Nutrition
Tracking your macros can also teach you a lot about nutrition. You’ll learn about the different nutrients you’re eating and how they affect your body. This knowledge can help make better food choices in the future.
7. It Can Help with Meal Planning
If you find meal planning difficult, tracking your macros can help. This is because you’ll better understand the nutrient content of the foods you eat. This can make it easier to plan nutritious meals and meet your macro goals.
8. It Can Help Reduce Body Fat
If you’re carrying around excess body fat, tracking your macros can help you reduce it. This is because you’ll be more aware of the calorie content of the foods you’re eating and be less likely to overeat.
9. It Can Help Increase Muscle Mass
If you’re looking to increase your muscle mass, tracking your macros can help. This is because you’ll be able to ensure you’re eating enough calories to support muscle growth. You’ll also be able to ensure you’re getting enough protein, which is essential for muscle growth.
10. It’s a Healthy Way of Eating
Overall, tracking your macros is a healthy way of eating. This is because you’re more aware of the nutrient content of the foods you eat and are less likely to overeat. In addition, tracking your macros can help you make better food choices and reduce body fat.
What Happens If You Don’t Track Your Macros?
If you’re tracking your macros, you could benefit from vital nutrients your body needs to function correctly. Without adequate amounts of protein, fat, and carbs, your body will struggle to perform optimally, both physically and mentally. As a result, you may notice a decrease in energy levels, strength, and stamina, as well as an increase in food cravings and hunger. If you are not monitoring your macros, it may lead to weight gain or difficulty hitting your fitness goals. To avoid these negative consequences, track your macros to get the nutrients your body needs.
Most Asked Questions
What if I hit my macros but go over calories?
Things like this happen; when you worry about high calorific intake, you start to overthink things and make simple things more complicated than they need to be. But the consensus about this is mixed; some say that hitting within your macros is more critical, as they say, quality over quantity, while on the other hand, some fitness experts rally for watching your calorie intake as this is the critical factor in reaching your weight loss goals – the decision is yours. So why not consult a health fitness professional and do a customised programme that fits your biological blueprint?
What are the best macro-tracking apps?
Can I hit my macro and not calories?
It’s possible to hit your macros but not calories. However, it could be better if you’re trying to lose weight. Aiming for a slight deficit of 200-300 calories daily is better.
The Bottom Line
When you track your macros, you can ensure that you’re getting the right balance of nutrients for your goals. For instance, if your goal is fat loss, you want to ensure that you eat fewer carbs and fats and more protein.
On the other hand, if your goal is muscle gain, you want to ensure that you’re eating more carbs and fats and less protein. This is because carbs and fats help to fuel your workouts and assist with muscle recovery, while too much protein can lead to muscle loss.
As you can see, tracking your macros is a much more effective way to reach your fitness goals than simply tracking your calories.
Disclaimer: This is informative and should under no circumstance be taken as medical advice. We cannot guarantee accuracy – if you have any questions, always consult your doctor or natural health practitioner.