Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to RECOGNISE what each food is? For example, what is a Nakd bar classed as? Are ‘protein’ bars an OK snack? Is a sandwich ok or do I have to live off superfood salads my entire life?!
Knowing the basics about food is so essential. So many plans skip right to the subject of what we should be doing, rather than explain the reason ‘why’.
News flash…all food aid weight loss and health, even (dare we say it) chocolate! It is not the food that hinders weight loss, but how we use it and also in what quantities. You CANNOT defy the law of thermodynamics; i.e. if you’re eating more than you require in energy then your body WILL store it.
Also, here’s another unexpected fact…‘Healthy’ isn’t always helpful. For example…
You go to brunch and get eggs on toast with avocado. Healthy…right? Are you sure? Usually this type of brunch comes with what looks like a full large avocado smashed up, two eggs and either one or two pieces of toast. That size of avocado serving is probably 4 x the amount you should be looking to have to make a ‘balanced’ meal. In this way, ‘healthy’ in inappropriate portions isn’t being helpful. For many women, your body doesn’t NEED this serving size (of course, some women have a requirement for a high energy intake such as athletes but we’re not focussing this blog towards them!).
Watching your serving sizes is NOT a restriction, although our mind may convince us it is.
By learning what our body DOES need, and not supplements, or superfood salads, maca and chia seed lattes. No. By learning the basics. So, we’re giving you a snippet of our BeBreakthrough30 plan right here starting from the beginning….
For some people this may sound a little basic, but, to begin with we want to take some time to outline the difference between macronutrients and food groups. So many people get confused with these, and the reason why this can get quite confusing is because the name of the macronutrients (carbs, protein and fats) are exactly the same as the name of three of the food groups. This is your absolute basics about nutrition and if we help you get this, it will make it much easier going forwards.
Food is made up from three main macronutrients which are carbohydrate, fat and protein. Many people think that they are singular, meaning that a carb is a carb and a fat is only a fat. But the truth is that very few foods are made up from just one macronutrient. Most foods have little bits of each macronutrient, or, a lot of all three. For example 100g of broccoli contains around 20% protein, 9% fat and 71% carbohydrates. So, even though we Broccoli is classed as a carbohydrate, it still contains elements of each macronutrient within it.
For now, todays purpose is to help you get fully up to date with the basics that is macro’s.
In no particular order…
Macronutrient 1: Protein
Protein is needed for many things. The body uses it for maintenance such as growth and repair of skin, hair, muscles connective tissue and organs. It is also needed to help produce hormones, enzymes and for immune support (antibodies), as well as being used by the body as an energy source. Because protein is a structural component of our tissues, muscles, bones etc, you can find it in abundance in animal products such as meat, eggs, fish and dairy, and is also present in small amounts in fruit, vegetables, nuts, beans, grains and pulses (for the vegetarians and vegans).
Macronutrient 2: Carbohydrate
This is THE most confusing macro for so many people, and also the one with the most stigma attached to it. When people think of carbohydrates, most people picture bread, potatoes, pasta and rice. One important thing to know and remember, is that carbohydrates are present in nearly all food groups. So, when we talk about carbohydrate, we are referring to all types of carbohydrate including simple sugars, starchy carbohydrate and fibres, which range from potatoes to fruit and other vegetables. The carbohydrate family tree is a large one that has many different branches, some contain more sugars and others more water, starch and fibre, which all have different effects on the body (something we will learn a little later on in the program).
Macronutrient 3: Fat
Fats are important for maintenance of cell membranes, proper functioning of the brain and nerves, and hormone regulation (our hormones are made of fats!). Fat is also integral for us to be able to get our essential fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E, K), without fat, we would not be able to uptake these vitamins – i.e. they are fat soluble vitamins so need some fat in our diets to be processed.There are a few different types of fats, which we will teach you about Fat comes in a variety of different types, which, on the surface of it they all provide equal calories, however they all behave very differently inside our bodies, but don’t stress too much about these large words, we are going to help you really understand this in later emails.
So these are your macros…Fats, Protein and Carbohydrates. Hopefully a little ray of light on these. So, now only food groups…
Food groups simply help us categorise foods based on their source, type or macronutrient profile. The groups are merely an indication of the make-up of the food content in terms of the relative percentage of carbs, fats and proteins in the food. Food groups are:
(4) Dairy alternatives
(6) Fats and
Check out the results that some of our members got on our 30 day nutrition plans in 2018!