Eating for Success: Macro & Micro Nutrients

Macro and micro nutrients

Macro and micro nutrients

Simple, healthy eating tips to fuel your body – the right way!

Boost your workouts and get better fitness results by balancing macro and micro nutrients.  

Macro nutrientsWhat are macro nutrients?

Macros are the carbohydrates, fats, and proteins that we eat in large quantities to keep our bodies satiated, active… and alive!  Combined, those three macro nutrients make up the majority of a healthy eating lifestyle.

  • Carbs: Not to be confused with potato chips, white bread, and cookies.  In terms of macro carbs, we mean the good stuff that nourishes, restores and helps your body perform at its peak while supplying much-needed energy.   Think: veggies, whole grains, fruits, beans, and lentils.
  • Fats: It’s important to incorporate the right kind of fats into your diet because it protects our organs and provides our cells with energy.  When choosing fats, select foods like avocados, fatty fish, extra virgin olive oil, nuts, cheese, etc.
  • Proteins: Evvvverybody knows that a body needs it.  Protein builds and repair muscles, takes care of our hair, nails and skin, and more!  Great sources of protein are eggs, fish, lean meat, black beans, Greek yogurt, and cheese.

What are micro nutrients?

List of micro nutrients

Micro nutrients are vitamins and minerals that we need in small portions to keep our bodies healthy and balanced.   Their main function is to enable necessary chemical reactions to occur in the body, but they provide no energy (i.e. they don’t boost your calorie intake).  Although micro nutrients are needed in much smaller quantities than macro nutrients, they are vital. Getting less than the recommended amount of micros creates a body that is susceptible to disease and more!  Here are a few benefits to getting the right amount of micro nutrients:

  • Regulating various functions in the human body (e.g. metabolism, heart beat, etc.)
  • Preventing, treating diseases and illnesses
  • Sustaining physical and mental well-being

Healthy foods on a tableHow macro and micro nutrients work together

Think of it this way: macros are the airplanes and micros are the luggage.  The plane is necessary to get to your destination and, while the luggage doesn’t impact your arrival time or travel schedule, it greatly influences how prepared you are upon arriving.  Without proper luggage, you’re totally unprepared for a dinner out, the beach…  any activity.

In the same way, if you eat the recommended amount of macros, you’ll feel full and have energy, but if those chosen macros don’t have the necessary amount of micros, your body will be lacking the vital components needed to function smoothly.  This can result in fatigue, weakness, mental fogginess, slow reflexes, abnormal heart beat, mood swings, impaired immune system, brittle bones and so much more!

Fuel your body for success

Group of smiling friendsThe best way to ensure that you’re getting the right amount of macros and micros is to check your eating habits.  One great way to do this is meal planning.  It’s no secret that meal planning provides HUGE lifestyle benefits, it also enables you monitor how well you’re doing on the macro/micro front.

For example, if you know that you need X amount of calories daily (apps like MyFitnessPal come in handy to figure that out), then combining a free meal planning app such as FoodPlanner can help you find tasty recipes, plan your weekly menu, AND see the nutritional facts.  Armed with nutritional info, you’ll not only see the calorie breakdown of carbs, fats and proteins, but you’ll also see what vitamins and minerals are found in each food.

Ready to build a balanced plate?

Check out the Huffington Post’s article about how to get the right amount of macros and micros in your diet!