What kinds of foods to make up the macronutrient ratios?
What foods should you eat daily?
You need a variety of food to provide fat, carbohydrates and protein.
Again contrary to popular opinion fat is not bad for you. Fat does contain 9 calories per gram compared to 4 calories per gram for carbs and protein. So a small amount can add calories quickly. Fat is needed for essential bodily functions and without it you will have health problems. A minimum of 20% of your calories should come from fat. Fat has also been shown to have the ability to satiate hunger which is always important when dieting.
Good sources of healthy fats(mono- and polyunsaturated):
Nuts (I like unroasted almonds, natural peanut butter, walnuts)
Olive oil (I use extra virgin almost exclusively)
Carbohydrates come in two varieties complex (also called good carb) and simple (also called bad carbs). Simple carbs are not necessarily bad for you. The problem with simple carbs is that they are digested quickly. The good thing about simple carbs is they are digested quickly. Think of sugar. It is great for a quick short term energy boost and when your glycogen levels (the energy source for your muscles) are low, like after a workout, simple carbs are a great way to replenish your glycogen supply. But if your glycogen levels are full because you have been sitting in front of your computer, the carbs get stored as fat. Complex carbs take longer to digest so they provide a longer lasting energy source. Because they take longer to digest your body has a chance to burn off some of your glycogen supply before it tries to store the complex carbs as glycogen or fat. You should limit your simple carbs to the morning (after you haven't eaten for 6-8 hours and your glycogen supplies are low) or after a workout when your glycogen need refilled.
Whole Wheat/Whole Grain bread
white flour (including white breads)
Alcohol (including hard liquor, wine and beer)
Protein is the only nutrient that has the chemical building blocks to repair and build muscle. Protein is very important when dieting. Weight loss from diet without exercise will be 50% from burning fat stores and 50% from catabolizing muscle. Losing muscle is a bad thing as muscle drives your metabolism when you have less your body burns less calories.
Meat (Beef, turkey, tuna, fish, chicken, pork)
Beans (lentils, navy beans, pinto beans, soy beans,etc.)
Dairy (milk, cottage cheese, yogurt)
Water (Not really a food, but essential just the same)
You should strive to get a minimum of 20% of your calories from fat, 30% from protein and the rest from carbohydrate (limiting simple carbs).
Last edited by VitoVino; 02-02-2012 at 04:47 PM.