Balance is key, but finding it a task. So, how do you find the balance? This is something that will take experimenting to figure out. There is no one balance fits all ratios of macronutrients (fats, carbohydrates, proteins). This will vary from person to person based on a number of different variables, like age, weight, goals, and metabolism. If these ratios aren’t something you’ve ever paid attention to, then now is the time to start tweaking your food intake and pay closer attention to the amounts of macronutrients you consume with each meal. If you normally consume mostly one macronutrient than the others, this is your baseline and where you can start to make some changes. With this baseline, you can now start to add and subtract from there. Your baseline is based on your normal way of eating and averaging the amounts of macronutrients you tend to eat and in what ratio. If you add a little more of one macro, then you might have to take away some of another, or you very well may have to add more of 1 or all macros. Again, it’s different for everyone and depends on what and how you are eating now. And remember, the foods you consume should come from healthy and whole foods and much as humanly possible. Which means, it is very very possible!!! Here are some examples of how to tweak your macronutrient ratios:
- You eat a ¼ of a chicken breast, pile of cooked broccoli with sourcream, shredded cheddar cheese, chopped green onions, butter, on a large baked potato. In this meal, there really aren’t any delineated guides on macronutrients. So, let’s switch this up, instead do this: 3 ounces cooked chicken breast, ¾ cup cooked broccoli, 1 tsp sour cream, ¼ cup chopped green onions, ¼ cup shredded cheddar cheese, 3 ounces baked potato.
If you measure things out, it gives you a better eye for future prep of this meal or one similar, and later, you can eyeball what these portions look like, based on your past measuring experience. When you have no guidelines, then you end up overeating. Measuring allows you to have a balance of the nutrients you consume.
- Ex.: You have been following a fats/carbs/protein ratio of 20/60/20, and have been doing cardio several days per week for the past 6 weeks, but you haven’t seen any change in your weight loss efforts. This is a good time to revisit and tweak the macronutrient ratio you’ve been following. Maybe you should try to up your protein intake, and lessen the carbohydrate intake. Also, rethink the types of carbohydrates you’ve been eating, for ex., less breads and more high fiber carbs like cruciferous vegetables, and high fiber whole grains. Think about the sources of fat you’re eating. Are they healthy fats, like avocados, high fat fish, coconut and coconut oil? When you balance your ratios for your needs, your results will start to show the top of its head. Be patient and figure out what your body is asking you for.
Finding a macro ratio that works for you may take a few ratio tweaks, but it’s out there, you will find it. The ratio that worked for your friend may not work for you, your body’s makeup and necessities for change are different. Finding what you need may take a moment, but maintain patience with yourself, and seek help when you need it. Remember, if what you’ve been doing hasn’t been working, then a change needs to be made in your diet and/or in your fitness routine. The balance is out there. Help is out there, you just have to ask for it. So, walking the nutrition tightrope will land you on the right side of your goal, you just have to start the walk.
Tipping the scales,