Nutrition is the main ingredient to your fitness blueprint and this series covers every aspect along with exercise advice to help you draw up your own plan.
Last week, in part one, I discussed the foundation of creating your own blueprint to your nutrition strategy. I taught you some of the most effective ways to measure your weight, rate and time frame. If you have not read that yet, you can do so HERE.
The path to a healthier lifestyle is a learning experience. With this series I am summarizing the basic concepts that you can use to draw up your own nutrition plan. It is an attempt to spark a change in the way people see and pay for fitness programs.
CALORIES, CARBS, PROTEIN, FAT, FIBER AND ALCOHOL:
Also known as macronutrients, the six elements in the heading are the fundamental constituents in every food or drink that you consume. A common mistake people who start a nutrition plan make, is that they ‘control’ their nutrition by measuring the portion sizes. This is not a very effective tool because it does not take the energy content of the food into account.
PORTION CONTROL VS. ENERGY CONTROL:
Using portion control as a tool to gauge your nutrition is like swinging at a pinata blindfolded – it’s only accurate some of time. In order to get your nutrition on track you must understand how to control energy intake and output. In the case of human beings we do this through calorie consumption and activity. Calories control how we lose or gain weight, if we consume more than we spend we will gain weight that’s just the simple physics behind it. But how are calories calculated?
THE MATHEMATICS OF NUTRITION:
All of the food we consume is made up of carbohydrates, protein and fat. The amount of each of these macronutrients will determine the total amount of calories that a meal contains. Here is a summary of the caloric value that carbs, fat and protein contain:
Where people tend to get confused with their nutrition is when they think that the weight of the food itself is the most important aspect of a fat-friendly meal but inn actual fact, it is the caloric value. For instance, a 50 gram bowl of Kellogg’s Rice Krispies contains 41.7g of carbs, 0.7g of fat and 3.3g of protein. Using the value per gram table from above that equates to 186.3 calories.
If you take another food like, for example, peanut butter (7g carb, 28g fat, 10g protein) of equivalent weight, not only is it much more in calories but also much less in size. You could eat 3 bowls of Rice Krispies for the same energy value as 2.5 tablespoons of peanut butter.
Here are some snippets from my book of examples of what category certain foods fall into:
FIBER AND ALCOHOL IN YOUR NUTRITION:
Fiber is part of the macronutrient family, but it does not add caloric value to your nutrition. It is worth mentioning because it is important to know that picking carbohydrate based foods with more fiber (wholewheat options) will help you reach the recommended amount of 20-40g of fiber in your nutrition plan.
Alcohol is a tricky nutrient, as it does have 7 calories per gram, but has different effects in the way we metabolize it along with the other macronutrients. Incorporating it into your nutrition plan requires you to reduce some of the other foods to make up for the extra calories. I have written a longer post about this that you can read HERE.
Now that you have a very basic understanding of the elements in your nutrition plan, stay tuned for part three where I will show you how to calculate each of these elements to perfectly match your weight loss/gain that you calculated in your foundation in PART ONE.
The next few entries into this series will still cover:
- How to align these elements to your blueprint
- Broken metabolisms
- Training and cardio’s effect on your blueprint
- How to bring it all together
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