Macros

Lets talk about Macros.. Some of you may be thinking what. the. heck. are. macros?! So to answer your question; Macros or Macronutrients are the three groups that all foods are categorised into. These are:

  • Fats
  • Carbohydrates
  • Proteins

To have a healthy balanced diet you need all three in moderation, as they each serve different purposes for your general health as well as helping you to function properly both physically and mentally, yet I still hear that people are avoiding or at least trying to avoid certain macros because they believe that they are “bad” for them. Food is not “good” or “bad” its not a child, but it can be categorised into “simple” and “complex” groups instead. Yes some foods are better for you then others but your body can’t process the fuel further than it being a carb, fat or protein. So by avoiding any macros you’re depleting your body of nutrients that it needs to be able to function as effectively as possible.

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Carbs

So what actually are carbs? Carbs are the sugars, starches and the fibre found in fruit, grains and vegetables. They are our bodies main source of fuel, by avoiding carbs or restricting them from your diet your body will react by going into a state of starvation where it takes its energy from your muscles instead of your body fat. From a fitness perspective this is exactly what you don’t want, especially if you’re trying to build any form of muscle mass. You may be losing weight, but its water weight and muscle, which when carbs are reintroduced into the diet will pile back on again.

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If you’re really wanting to make a healthy choice when it comes to carbs, try looking into simple and complex carbs more and make the decision to eat a diet containing more wholefoods.

  • Simple carbs: are processed foods such as canned fruit, candy, cake, brown/white sugars and sodas.
  • Complex carbs: are more natural foods such as vegetables, fruit, grains such as quinoa and brown rice and legumes.

Fats

Fats in food have a purpose and role to fill too, for one they help your brain function, fats regulate your bodies hormones, they help maintain healthy skin and hair and they also provide energy. If you have read any articles around exercise you may know that once the fuel from the carbs you ate before working out are used up, your fat storage is used as your next fuel source. But where should you get your fat from? Your body won’t be able to tell the difference between different types of fat but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t go for the healthier alternatives.

  • Saturated fats: Many Meats contain saturated fat (one of many good reasons not to eat meat), cream, butter, milk and cheese (another reason to go vegan), many baked goods and fried foods also contain high levels of saturated fats. Some plant-based oils, such as palm oil, palm kernel oil and coconut oil, also contain primarily saturated fats, but do not contain cholesterol. (why I avoid oils as much as possible.

So what exactly does saturated fat do? It raises total blood cholesterol levels and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol levels, which can increase your risk of cardiovascular disease and also can increase your chance of type II diabetes.

  • Monounsaturated fats: Avocados (um yes please), Nuts, nut/seed butters, olives and olive oil, Dark chocolate, Tofu, Edamame and seeds.

Although these are healthier, remember that for every gram of fat thats 9 calories (much more calorie dense than carbs and protein), so like everything eat in moderation.

Protein

The role of proteins is simple. They do most of the work in the cells as they structure, function and regulate the bodies tissues and organs. So their role is really frickin important. Even though more people are becoming aware of significance of having protein in their diet, I still hear girls saying that they don’t want to eat protein (especially protein powders) because it will make them bulk up. Protein will actually help you maintain a toned body and can assist in burning fat and increase your lean muscle mass. Another myth is that you can only get protein from meat, which as a vegan is probably the most face palming myth that there is. As a vegan it opens up your eyes to what you actually eat and how much BS we are told. No, you don’t just get protein from dead animals.

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Vegan protein is an amazing thing, no animals are hurt in the process and its so much better for you, the animals and our planet. If you’re looking for another source of protein, I recommend finding a vegan protein, one that suits you and what you’re looking for. Do your research before buying but after trying many different brands I can that my favourite is Womens Best by far.

Hope this helps some of you ☺️ as always if you have any suggestions for any future posts or just want to say hi feel free to email me at natasha.lexis1@gmail.com 

Tash x

 

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