When I meet a new client for the first time, whether it’s in person or online, I always ask them a series of carefully picked questions. One of them is, “On a scale of 1–10, what do you rate your nutrition, and why?” The answers will range anywhere from 1 to 9, but as they expand on their answers, a theme is exposed. More often than not, they’ll list off the foods they either eat or don’t eat with no mention of the quantities of those foods.
The greatest lie the devil ever told was that what you eat matters more than how much you eat.
And this lie has gone so viral that most people think that controlling what they eat will dictate how awesome (or not awesome) their body looks. That’s exactly why, at this moment in time, this is the most important piece of information I can give you regarding nutrition and fat loss.
Let Me Drop a Bomb On You — How Much You Eat Matters More Than What You Eat.
Here’s how it works.
You need a certain amount of calories to maintain your body weight.
Eat too many, you gain weight.
Eat a little below that mark, and you’ll lose weight.
Where those calories come from, whether it be chicken breast and vegetables or snickers bars, is secondary. It’s not as important as the total calories themselves.
I know, your head just exploded.
Now don’t get me wrong. The foods you choose to eat are important. Eating nutritious foods will help you stay full, feel good, train hard….
..oh, and be healthy.
But when it comes to your body weight, it’s all about how many calories you eat and how many calories you burn throughout your day. Which is why knowing how many calories you should be eating, and how many calories you are eating, is crucial.
You may have heard the word ‘macros’ before. ‘Macros’ is a short version of the word ‘macronutrients’. Macronutrients refer to the three main nutrients that make up all the calories you eat: Protein, Carbohydrates, and Fat.
These three nutrients all serve a different purpose.
Protein: The structural component of cells and tissues. Protein is what rebuilds your muscle tissue after it’s broken down by exercise, and is what makes up your skeletal muscle (the ones you flex in the mirror).
Carbohydrates: The primary function of carbohydrates, or carbs, is energy. Put simply, they provide quick energy and are our bodies primary source of fuel.
Note – Carbs have gotten a bad rap in the past decade or so after becoming he subject of the latest nutrition witch hunt. But carbs are useful, they don’t make you fat (in the right doses), and they’re delicious.
Fat: this is the backup fuel source for the body. It also provides vital functions like absorbing nutrients, maintaining core temperature, and regulating hormones.
Note – Fat was the subject of the nutrition witch hunt before carbs. Again, fat doesn’t make you fat in the right doses, and they’re also delicious.
If calories dictate whether your lose, gain, or maintain your body weight, then macros will dictate your body composition. (How lean you are).
It’s not only important to understand how many calories are in the food you eat. It’s also important to understand how many macronutrients are in your food as well.
The Bottom Line is This
The foods you choose to eat are important. Not only because some foods offer more nutritionally than others, but also because they provide varying amounts of calories and macronutrients.
And this is the key.
Knowing how many calories and macronutrients you need, and how many you eat on a day to day basis is the game.
How Do You Do This?
Oh, what a time to be alive.
It’s never been easier to not only find out how many calories and macros you need. It’s dead simple to track your intake every day as well. In order to find out how many calories and macros you need for your goals, there are a ton of apps, calculators and formulas available online.
One important note: no formula on earth can give you precisely how many calories or macros you need, but they can give you a great place to start. The magic is in the adjustments. Watching how your body responds, and adjusting accordingly as you progress.
As for tracking, I like to use an app called MyFitnessPal. I know others who like an app called MyMacros. I’m sure there are plenty out there. These apps make tracking easy and fast. It takes me an average of 1–2 minutes per day to track all my food.
This Is The Game
Understanding how much food you’re eating in terms of calories and macronutrients is the game.
While you won’t need to track your food for the rest of your life, taking 30 days to track your nutrition and aim for daily targets will be the best education in nutrition you will ever get.
By Fat Loss Expert & Fitmo Coach, Mitch Heaslip
Mitch is going to get you into the best shape of your life! But what’s his secret? Mitch has developed solid methods that work for both men and women in losing weight and building muscle. With his very flexible approach, Mitch can tailor his methods to anyone. When it comes to building strength, muscle, and losing fat, his approach is second to none!