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What’s the deal with macros

mc62412mc62412 Member Posts: 154 Member Member Posts: 154 Member
So I’m new to all this ... seriously eating healthy business.
So if I’m asking a question that seems silly, be nice lol. I don’t know anything about them.

What is the deal with macros ? What’s their purpose. How do they help ? And how do you navigate / track / use them for reaching your goals ?

Replies

  • psuLemonpsuLemon Member, MFP Moderator, Greeter, Premium Posts: 36,513 MFP Moderator Member, MFP Moderator, Greeter, Premium Posts: 36,513 MFP Moderator
    mc62412 wrote: »
    So I’m new to all this ... seriously eating healthy business.
    So if I’m asking a question that seems silly, be nice lol. I don’t know anything about them.

    What is the deal with macros ? What’s their purpose. How do they help ? And how do you navigate / track / use them for reaching your goals ?

    Dealing with macros allows you to address more specific goals or satiety. Higher protein diets can improve muscle retention and improve exercise recovery.

    I run a modified Ketogenic diet for the satiation effects. Within the diets, i aim for low net carbs (~50g) and higher protein (~165g or 1g/lb of weight). I do this to help with muscle retention as i get more lean. And i use this in conjunction with a 5 day lifting program.
  • mc62412mc62412 Member Posts: 154 Member Member Posts: 154 Member
    psuLemon wrote: »
    mc62412 wrote: »
    So I’m new to all this ... seriously eating healthy business.
    So if I’m asking a question that seems silly, be nice lol. I don’t know anything about them.

    What is the deal with macros ? What’s their purpose. How do they help ? And how do you navigate / track / use them for reaching your goals ?

    Dealing with macros allows you to address more specific goals or satiety. Higher protein diets can improve muscle retention and improve exercise recovery.

    I run a modified Ketogenic diet for the satiation effects. Within the diets, i aim for low net carbs (~50g) and higher protein (~165g or 1g/lb of weight). I do this to help with muscle retention as i get more lean. And i use this in conjunction with a 5 day lifting program.

    Is this something I should be paying closer attention to now ? Or down the road when I’m closer to my goal
  • yirarayirara Member Posts: 5,286 Member Member Posts: 5,286 Member
    psuLemon wrote: »
    mc62412 wrote: »
    psuLemon wrote: »
    mc62412 wrote: »
    So I’m new to all this ... seriously eating healthy business.
    So if I’m asking a question that seems silly, be nice lol. I don’t know anything about them.

    What is the deal with macros ? What’s their purpose. How do they help ? And how do you navigate / track / use them for reaching your goals ?

    Dealing with macros allows you to address more specific goals or satiety. Higher protein diets can improve muscle retention and improve exercise recovery.

    I run a modified Ketogenic diet for the satiation effects. Within the diets, i aim for low net carbs (~50g) and higher protein (~165g or 1g/lb of weight). I do this to help with muscle retention as i get more lean. And i use this in conjunction with a 5 day lifting program.

    Is this something I should be paying closer attention to now ? Or down the road when I’m closer to my goal

    Higher protein is always good during weight loss. So it weight training. Outside of that, its based on preference.

    In general, women should consume 90-130g of protein per day. Getting adequate fiber is also beneficial.

    Quite honestly, I have no idea how I could even consume 90g of protein. The usual European non-UK diet, having bread for breakfast and lunch just doesn't add a lot of that. And having a dinner with 60gr protein... I fail to even imagine how that looks like in a 500-600 calorie dinner. These might be recommendations, but they just aren't feasible for considerable amount of people, depending on what their diet looks like.
  • lemurcat2lemurcat2 Member Posts: 5,557 Member Member Posts: 5,557 Member
    I'd say when losing a good goal for muscle maintenance is at least 0.8 g per lb of a healthy goal weight (although more is fine). For me, that's a minimum of 96, and generally consistent with lemon's recommendations.

    I've actually read that the range is more like at least 0.6 or 0.65-0.8, but more is recommended if one is both active and losing -- in which case one would have more cals, of course, and as a woman of middle age, muscle retention is hard enough so I do like to get at least the 0.8.

    When not losing, I think the 0.6 g is sufficient, which is more like 75 g for me.

    And yeah, I do make sure to have protein with breakfast and lunch. If I skip breakfast, as I sometimes do, then I have larger lunches and dinners, so it's not a problem.

    But it's true you don't actually need that much for health. I find my overall diet tends to be more sating eating that way.

    Beyond protein, I think macros don't matter much, other than on an individual level -- if you find eating a certain amount of carbs or fat helps with satiety or if you are someone who tends not to eat enough fat unless you focus on it (not my problem). For some I think it helps with structure. For me, focusing on nutrition instead of macros (other than protein) seems more logical.
    edited June 30
  • mc62412mc62412 Member Posts: 154 Member Member Posts: 154 Member
    mc62412 wrote: »
    So I’m new to all this ... seriously eating healthy business.
    So if I’m asking a question that seems silly, be nice lol. I don’t know anything about them.

    What is the deal with macros ? What’s their purpose. How do they help ? And how do you navigate / track / use them for reaching your goals ?
    How new? I don't want to offend, but I'm gonna go very basic just in case. There are three macronutrients, protein, carbohydrates, and dietary fat. (Dietary fat is not related to body fat.)

    Protein and carbs are 4 calories per gram. Fat is 9 calories per gram.

    Protein, as stated above, helps preserve and repair muscle. It also helps some people feel full, and can help curb cravings in some people. Based on this, getting adequate protein is a good idea.

    Your body uses carbohydrates to create energy. Many people cut them very low (keto, low-carb), to help create the calorie deficit needed to lose weight. That doesn't work for me, personally. I freak out and binge if my carbs are too low.

    Fats help your body absorb nutrients and are important in hormone production. Going low-fat for a long time can really screw up your body because of this.

    The only thing you need to do to lose weight is create a calorie deficit. How you choose to do that is up to you.

    Thanks.
    Not new to healthy eating habits. But super new when it comes to understanding the macros. I see some people really focus on them. While others don’t.
  • ebrookes73ebrookes73 Member Posts: 18 Member Member Posts: 18 Member

    yirara wrote: »
    psuLemon wrote: »
    mc62412 wrote: »
    psuLemon wrote: »
    mc62412 wrote: »
    So I’m new to all this ... seriously eating healthy business.
    So if I’m asking a question that seems silly, be nice lol. I don’t know anything about them.

    What is the deal with macros ? What’s their purpose. How do they help ? And how do you navigate / track / use them for reaching your goals ?

    Dealing with macros allows you to address more specific goals or satiety. Higher protein diets can improve muscle retention and improve exercise recovery.

    I run a modified Ketogenic diet for the satiation effects. Within the diets, i aim for low net carbs (~50g) and higher protein (~165g or 1g/lb of weight). I do this to help with muscle retention as i get more lean. And i use this in conjunction with a 5 day lifting program.

    Is this something I should be paying closer attention to now ? Or down the road when I’m closer to my goal

    Higher protein is always good during weight loss. So it weight training. Outside of that, its based on preference.

    In general, women should consume 90-130g of protein per day. Getting adequate fiber is also beneficial.

    Quite honestly, I have no idea how I could even consume 90g of protein. The usual European non-UK diet, having bread for breakfast and lunch just doesn't add a lot of that. And having a dinner with 60gr protein... I fail to even imagine how that looks like in a 500-600 calorie dinner. These might be recommendations, but they just aren't feasible for considerable amount of people, depending on what their diet looks like.

    A traditional French bean cassoulet with sausages or a piece of fish, or a Greek salad with fish or feta would meet the brief.
  • quiksylver296quiksylver296 Member Posts: 26,955 Member Member Posts: 26,955 Member
    mc62412 wrote: »
    mc62412 wrote: »
    So I’m new to all this ... seriously eating healthy business.
    So if I’m asking a question that seems silly, be nice lol. I don’t know anything about them.

    What is the deal with macros ? What’s their purpose. How do they help ? And how do you navigate / track / use them for reaching your goals ?
    How new? I don't want to offend, but I'm gonna go very basic just in case. There are three macronutrients, protein, carbohydrates, and dietary fat. (Dietary fat is not related to body fat.)

    Protein and carbs are 4 calories per gram. Fat is 9 calories per gram.

    Protein, as stated above, helps preserve and repair muscle. It also helps some people feel full, and can help curb cravings in some people. Based on this, getting adequate protein is a good idea.

    Your body uses carbohydrates to create energy. Many people cut them very low (keto, low-carb), to help create the calorie deficit needed to lose weight. That doesn't work for me, personally. I freak out and binge if my carbs are too low.

    Fats help your body absorb nutrients and are important in hormone production. Going low-fat for a long time can really screw up your body because of this.

    The only thing you need to do to lose weight is create a calorie deficit. How you choose to do that is up to you.

    Thanks.
    Not new to healthy eating habits. But super new when it comes to understanding the macros. I see some people really focus on them. While others don’t.

    I would suggest starting with MFP's macros you are given when you do the guided set-up. Try them out for a month or so, see how you like them, and adjust as needed.
  • mc62412mc62412 Member Posts: 154 Member Member Posts: 154 Member
    mc62412 wrote: »
    mc62412 wrote: »
    So I’m new to all this ... seriously eating healthy business.
    So if I’m asking a question that seems silly, be nice lol. I don’t know anything about them.

    What is the deal with macros ? What’s their purpose. How do they help ? And how do you navigate / track / use them for reaching your goals ?
    How new? I don't want to offend, but I'm gonna go very basic just in case. There are three macronutrients, protein, carbohydrates, and dietary fat. (Dietary fat is not related to body fat.)

    Protein and carbs are 4 calories per gram. Fat is 9 calories per gram.

    Protein, as stated above, helps preserve and repair muscle. It also helps some people feel full, and can help curb cravings in some people. Based on this, getting adequate protein is a good idea.

    Your body uses carbohydrates to create energy. Many people cut them very low (keto, low-carb), to help create the calorie deficit needed to lose weight. That doesn't work for me, personally. I freak out and binge if my carbs are too low.

    Fats help your body absorb nutrients and are important in hormone production. Going low-fat for a long time can really screw up your body because of this.

    The only thing you need to do to lose weight is create a calorie deficit. How you choose to do that is up to you.

    Thanks.
    Not new to healthy eating habits. But super new when it comes to understanding the macros. I see some people really focus on them. While others don’t.

    I would suggest starting with MFP's macros you are given when you do the guided set-up. Try them out for a month or so, see how you like them, and adjust as needed.

    Will do. Thanks
  • yirarayirara Member Posts: 5,286 Member Member Posts: 5,286 Member
    ebrookes73 wrote: »
    yirara wrote: »
    psuLemon wrote: »
    mc62412 wrote: »
    psuLemon wrote: »
    mc62412 wrote: »
    So I’m new to all this ... seriously eating healthy business.
    So if I’m asking a question that seems silly, be nice lol. I don’t know anything about them.

    What is the deal with macros ? What’s their purpose. How do they help ? And how do you navigate / track / use them for reaching your goals ?

    Dealing with macros allows you to address more specific goals or satiety. Higher protein diets can improve muscle retention and improve exercise recovery.

    I run a modified Ketogenic diet for the satiation effects. Within the diets, i aim for low net carbs (~50g) and higher protein (~165g or 1g/lb of weight). I do this to help with muscle retention as i get more lean. And i use this in conjunction with a 5 day lifting program.

    Is this something I should be paying closer attention to now ? Or down the road when I’m closer to my goal

    Higher protein is always good during weight loss. So it weight training. Outside of that, its based on preference.

    In general, women should consume 90-130g of protein per day. Getting adequate fiber is also beneficial.

    Quite honestly, I have no idea how I could even consume 90g of protein. The usual European non-UK diet, having bread for breakfast and lunch just doesn't add a lot of that. And having a dinner with 60gr protein... I fail to even imagine how that looks like in a 500-600 calorie dinner. These might be recommendations, but they just aren't feasible for considerable amount of people, depending on what their diet looks like.

    A traditional French bean cassoulet with sausages or a piece of fish, or a Greek salad with fish or feta would meet the brief.

    Yes, as a dinner. I could never put for example 60gr of protein from feta into a salad. Feta has about 17g protein per 100 grams, and 280 calories. Thus I could eat 200 gram max and a few leafy greens. Would it fill me? Totally not as carbs keep me full. Plus protein-rich food is a massive reflux trigger for me. If you're small and not that young anymore it's very difficult to hit the majority of the protein goal with one meal. Sure, I put cheese or meats on my bread, but it doesn't add up to much, unless I wanted to gain weight again and eat a lot more. Which again would likely trigger reflux.
  • lorrieannoberrylorrieannoberry Member Posts: 33 Member Member Posts: 33 Member
    A friend of mine does faster way to fat loss. and she set my macros on here. We look at carbs, protein and fat. On Monday and Tuesday we double the fat and only 50 carbs, protein stays the same. Wed through Sunday. I just go by whatever protein, fat, and carbs say to use. This i am sure is not for everyone.. but for me it has worked and i no longer have to chose low fat or just low carb. I get to eat both. This plan is also at 'fast" where most do 16/8 eating schedule. for me i eat from 1 to 9. again this is not for everyone. Just what works for me. But if you research faster way.. you can at least learn a little more on macros and i hope it helps. God Bless.
  • LietchiLietchi Member Posts: 1,003 Member Member Posts: 1,003 Member
    yirara wrote: »
    psuLemon wrote: »
    mc62412 wrote: »
    psuLemon wrote: »
    mc62412 wrote: »
    So I’m new to all this ... seriously eating healthy business.
    So if I’m asking a question that seems silly, be nice lol. I don’t know anything about them.

    What is the deal with macros ? What’s their purpose. How do they help ? And how do you navigate / track / use them for reaching your goals ?

    Dealing with macros allows you to address more specific goals or satiety. Higher protein diets can improve muscle retention and improve exercise recovery.

    I run a modified Ketogenic diet for the satiation effects. Within the diets, i aim for low net carbs (~50g) and higher protein (~165g or 1g/lb of weight). I do this to help with muscle retention as i get more lean. And i use this in conjunction with a 5 day lifting program.

    Is this something I should be paying closer attention to now ? Or down the road when I’m closer to my goal

    Higher protein is always good during weight loss. So it weight training. Outside of that, its based on preference.

    In general, women should consume 90-130g of protein per day. Getting adequate fiber is also beneficial.

    Quite honestly, I have no idea how I could even consume 90g of protein. The usual European non-UK diet, having bread for breakfast and lunch just doesn't add a lot of that. And having a dinner with 60gr protein... I fail to even imagine how that looks like in a 500-600 calorie dinner. These might be recommendations, but they just aren't feasible for considerable amount of people, depending on what their diet looks like.

    I don't quite agree with saying it's not feasible. It might just need some effort.

    My (European non-UK) diet, before focusing on my protein intake, had an average protein intake of around 75 grams.
    Bread contains some protein (especially darker/wholemeal kinds of bread). And what you put on it makes a difference too of course. Steering away from the sweet options and other low-protein options, in favor of meat, dairy and higher protein veggie options (for example hummus), changing the ratio of bread to topping, and adding some boiled eggs to the mix, was a fairly easy way for me to up my protein.
    I've never eaten bread for breakfast, but I eat yoghurt with fruit (if I have breakfast) instead of cereal. Yoghurt isn't great for protein so I'll sometimes add some protein powder to my yoghurt or (recently discovered) use a higher protein yoghurt such as skyr. It might not be bread, but I know plenty of people who don't eat bread in the morning, so it's not really revolutionary (and yet not the savoury breakfast often consumed in the US and the UK).
    As for dinner, a typical meat and vegetable dish will give a good of amount of protein (for example 150-200gr of chicken), maybe reducing the carbs a little to fit within the calories. It gets a bit trickier for, for example, pasta dishes or vegetarian options, but in some cases it's feasible to add some lentils or beans for extra protein (for example in a bolognese sauce) and whole wheat pasta has more protein too.
    And on top of that I've found some high protein snacks that I enjoy at the end of the day, when I'm a bit low on protein: protein chips (which I source from the Netherlands) with over 22grams of protein for 200kcal, boiled whelks and the occasional protein bar.

    All this to say that it's feasible - maybe not for everyone, but for many people - it just takes a bit of effort. I still have the occasional lower protein day, but my average protein intake is around 100 now.
  • cmriversidecmriverside Member Posts: 30,171 Member Member Posts: 30,171 Member
    I easily hit my 85-120g of protein on a 2000 calorie day (female). I was hitting it at 1700.

    I do use dairy, quite a lot of it actually. Eggs/meat or protein oatmeal for breakfast. Whole grains. Nuts and seeds. A normal 3 ounce portion of meat or fish at dinner. It's not that difficult to do if you include Greek yogurt and lowfat milk/cheese or cottage cheese and always whole grains. My bread has 6g per slice. I shoot for 30+ grams per meal, and that's not hard to do. Snacks need to have a good amount of protein too. I do have plant and whey-based protein powders but I rarely have more than a half scoop per day of supplemented powder and that's usually on a busy exercise day.
  • HeidiCooksSupperHeidiCooksSupper Member, Premium Posts: 3,637 Member Member, Premium Posts: 3,637 Member
    Here's a useful link for learning about macros: https://fullscript.com/blog/counting-macros
  • VegjoyPVegjoyP Member Posts: 705 Member Member Posts: 705 Member
    I am vegan and although I have a plant protein, my grams are at least 90 most days and I eat about 1200 calories a day. I don't eat meat alternativex. Some days I may have 1 shake, some 2
  • Mazintrov13Mazintrov13 Member Posts: 92 Member Member Posts: 92 Member
    Agree protein should be fairly easy to hit with a few adjustments. I am at 1850 calories today with 160 grams of protein. I am currently averaging 1900 calories a day (slow cut) with 150 grams of protein.
    I am 5’4 125 pound female
  • lemongirlbclemongirlbc Member, Premium Posts: 294 Member Member, Premium Posts: 294 Member
    nm
    edited June 30
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