More and more people are beginning to understand the significance of total calorie consumption and how it can significantly affect your overall body composition.
You can divide calorie consumption into three different categories; caloric maintenance, caloric deficit, and caloric surplus.
How Will a Calorie & Macro Calculator Help Me Meal Plan?
Macronutrients are none other than protein, carbohydrate, and fat. Whether your goal is to have a healthy balanced diet, build muscle, lose fat, or follow a specific diet plan such as the Ketogenic Diet, adjusting your macronutrient ratios is key to achieving your goals.
Nearly everyone who's paying attention to calories should have their health goal in mind when it comes time to meal plan. If you fit in this category then take this quick test to see how many grams of your macronutrients will help you reach your goals.
Once you're finished take a look below the calculator to learn more about calorie-related goals.
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Quite often, individuals who aim to consume a balanced diet are looking to maintain their current weight and to prioritize a healthy lifestyle. As stated earlier, a person must eat his or her allotted calories for maintenance, to keep their weight the same.
According to experts, a balanced macronutrient split that the average person may benefit from is 45% carbohydrates, 25% protein and 30% fat.
Additionally, a balanced diet is not complete without consuming a sufficient amount of fiber from whole food sources. The minimum fiber intake for women is 25 grams daily, and for men, it’s 38 grams daily.
The carbohydrates this macronutrient ratio provides will give you lasting energy to get you through the day while a moderate protein intake will help keep you satiated and will help the body recover from exercise and other rigorous activities.
Weight Loss Diet
It goes without saying that weight loss and fat loss is arguably the most common goal when it comes to fitness. There are hundreds of training programs and pieces of exercise equipment designed to help accelerate weight loss.
You may be surprised to find out that a proper diet alone will yield excellent weight loss results.
First things first, your total daily caloric intake should be at a caloric deficit, which means your burning more calories than you're consuming.
Next, your macronutrient split should be as follows; 50% carbohydrates, 30% protein and 20% fat. The minimum fiber intake does not change, in fact, it goes up by a few grams due to the higher protein intake from this macronutrient split.
Protein intake is high during a weight loss diet to preserve as much muscle as possible. It’s also more satiating than both carbs and fat.
Additionally, fat is kept to a minimum to maximize fat loss but is enough to ensure proper brain function and to maintain stable hormone levels.
Muscle Gain Diet
To build muscle, you need to consume enough calories to keep your body in an anabolic state. Research states that consuming 200-500 calories above maintenance is sufficient enough to ensure muscle gain and to minimize fat gain.
Consuming any higher than 500 calories would increase the risk of the excess calories being converted to fat.
A common macronutrient ratio for muscle gain is 55% carbohydrates, 25% protein and 20% fat. The minimum intake of fiber is the same as the requirements for a balanced diet.
To build muscle, it’s essential that you consume a high amount of carbohydrates. Carbs will provide you with enough energy to get through hard workouts.
When you train hard, you will create micro-tears in the muscle, which will signal the body to repair it to be bigger and stronger.
In most cases, people implement a Ketogenic diet for fat loss. In summary, the Ketogenic Diet requires individuals to consume a low amount of carbohydrates, a low to moderate amount of protein, and a high amount of fat.
After a few days to a week, the body enters ketosis. Ketosis is a state in which ketones are produced in the liver, and it starts to use fat as the body's primary fuel source due to the absence of glucose.
The macronutrient split suggested for a Ketogenic Diet is 5% carbohydrates, 10-15% protein, and the remaining percentage is fat.
For a person who consumes 2,300 calories, he or she would eat only 29 grams of carbohydrates, 58-86 grams of protein, and 204-217 grams of fat.
Consuming healthy sources of fat is imperative. Examples of this would be fatty fish, avocados, olive oil, coconut oil, MCT oil, etc.
The Final Word
Learning how to adjust your macronutrient ratios is a precious tool that will come in handy when you want to maintain your current weight, you want to build muscle, you want to lose fat, or you want to try out specific dieting protocols such as the Ketogenic Diet.
Additionally, it’s also worth taking note that leaner individuals who are looking to lose weight should further add to their daily protein intake by 10-15 grams as the risk for muscle loss increases as one gets leaner.
Also, people who have gastrointestinal problems may want to reduce their carbohydrate intake during a muscle gain phase as excess carbs may further aggravate digestive issues.
Going on a diet is more than just counting calories. Macronutrient ratios have a significant impact on muscle preservation, muscle building, fat loss, athletic performance, and overall health.