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A Scientific Approach to Nutrition Volume 2 ( Macronutrients )

Updated: Sep 21, 2018

Welcome back to Volume two hopefully, volume one didn't bore you too much. Trying to keep this whole science thing as fun as possible turns out its pretty difficult anyway shall we proceed. Volume 2 macronutrients so in this section we I get to talk about chicken, pasta and olive oil sorry I mean protein, carbohydrates and, fats. In the last section, we talked about calorie balance well our daily calories will be made of the three macronutrients and how we set them will dictate this next section. Remember we still cannot violate the previous law, in fact, we use the numbers generated from section one to aid us in this section.

I think it's actually important at this point to identify that there are 4 macronutrients





But for those interested in body composition or recovery alcohol should probably be limit unless of course its whiskey because we all know that whiskey is highly anabolic, Duffin takes shots between deadlifts and he reps 1000lb's

*whiskey isn't anabolic so I'm not condoning its consumption, in fact, if you have any send it my way.

First up Protein.

Most of us know kind of what protein is I mean its not industry secret that we need it. In fact, it seems lately that every single food product company out there is slapping the words PROTEIN on everything to increase sales.

Proteins have many essential roles within the body such as the transportation of substances, building tissue, being converted to energy for use as a fuel. They are sort of like a little construction crew. Proteins come from the greek proteos, meaning the most important one this is because we cannot survive without protein intake. Proteins are made up of amino acids of which there are 20. Of the 20 amino acids 12 are considered nonessential this is because the body can synthesise them, with the other 8 being considered essential because the only way to get them is through food consumption. Protein Yield's 4 calories per gram, we will get onto how much we need later in this post first let's introduce the over macronutrients.

Up Next Carbohydrates.

I feel sorry for carbohydrates, they currently bear the brunt of all the blame of this current obesity crisis we are in it seems like every day that someone says hey I have cut out carbs as if I'm going to pat them on the back and say well done I'm proud of you. Carbohydrates aren’t the reason you gained weight being greedy is....... Dam there goes a few more followers so that leaves me with just you mum, by the way, can we have fajitas for dinner.

Carbohydrates are an organic compound found in the foods we consume and is categorised as a combination of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen formed into a chain called sugar which we call a monosaccharide, these sugar molecules can be bonded together when 2 are bonded together we call it a disaccharide then we move to the between 3 and 10 chains which are called oligosaccharides and then 10+ is called polysaccharides. Polysaccharides can contain so many branches that they form a crystal which we refer to as starches.

-Monosaccharides -> Galactose, Fructose, Glucose

-Disaccharides -> Surcrose (table sugar) or Lactose

-Oligosaccharides ->Maltodextrin

-Polysaccharides -> Starch and glycogen

During digestion enzymes like alpha-amylase severs the chains into single monosaccharides (sugars) this is vital for absorption. What I'm saying is that whether you eat a potato or gummy bear it all ends up the same your body doesn't know the difference.

If you think of the protein as forming the engine of a car then carbohydrates are the fuel, they provide the fuel for the high-intensity training sessions. Carbohydrates yield 4 calories per gram and like protein, we will get onto home much we need later in this section.

Finally Fats.

Fats in the diet come in a number of formes for the scope of this post we will deal with fats as saturated and unsaturated. Fats have become somewhat of a holy grail with the recent rise in popularity of ketogenic diets which I don't have a problem but I know a handful of people who follow ketogenic diets and they seem to think that fats do not have any kind of a calorie value like they are so great it doesn't matter, funny thing is this same group still struggle to make changes in body composition mmmmmmmmm. Fats are distinctly different from protein and carbohydrates in that they are hydrophobic meaning they don't mix well with water. This is key as it allows them to perform certain functions within the body such as forming cell walls.

Saturated and unsaturated fats are categorised by the presence or lack of a double bond in chemical structure. Unsaturated fats have this double bond structure and the names Omega 3/6/9 signifies the position of the bond. Fats are very important in the body for hormone synthesis, cellular integrity, glycolipid formation and energy production via the aerobic energy pathway. Fat stored in the adipose tissue of the body otherwise known as body fat is actually your most potent energy store. So if you plan on going on Bear Grylls the Island it would be worth putting on a little weight before the show to give you more stored energy to aid your survival. Fats contain 9 calories per gram.

Calories per gram

I know I have already written this but you know I hate having to scroll back to the beginning to find some information that I need again so here it is again.

Protein = 4 caloires per gram -> 100g = 400caloires

Carbohydrate = 4 calories per gram 100g = 400caloires

Fats = 9 caloires per gram 100g = 900caloires

Setting you macronutrients in line with your Calories from Volume 1

So how you set your macronutrients will adjust according to your goals as I'm not going to recommend a 65year old lady whos performing light training once a week eats 3g's of protein per its just too extreme and in fact 0.8-1g per kg would be perfectly sufficient.

but the sake of this post I'm going to assume that the majority of your guys reading this are training between 3-5 times per week and are looking to build or retain as much muscle mass as possible.

At this point, you will need the calories that you worked in volume 1.

For this post-Im going to work it out as a 92kg male training 4x per week that requires 2,500 calories for maintenance.

So let's kick it off with protein as its numeral uno. Research supports between 0.8 and 2.8g per kg of body weight. Protein becomes more important in a calorie restriction to help spear muscle mass so you could shift towards the higher end of the scale and carbohydrates are protein sparing so in a gaining phase where carbohydrates are elevated you could get away with less protein. But to keep things easy I'd personally be setting your daily protein intake between 1.8g, 2.0g and 2.5g per kg of body weight.

I'm going to set my protein intake at 2g per kg of body weight so the calculation goes.

92kg (my BW) x 2.0 =184g (know we need to work out how many calories this =) now we times it by 4 (we know protein has 4 calories per gram so multiplying it by 4 will give us our total calories from protein intake) = 736 calories.

So protein is 184g per day which equals 736 calories.

Next, we move on to fat we do this because we need fats to survive and eating too little can be detrimental to health over the long term. The range we use to set fats is from 0.4-1.2g per kg of body weight. This is a pretty big range and ultimately comes down to personal preference. Personally, I prefer to eat more carbohydrates because meals are larger and more satisfying also because of the type of training I do I feel stronger on a higher carbohydrate diet. For this reason, I'm going to set mine at 0.6 which gives me an abundance of room for carbohydrates but not so low that it becomes too hard to stick to.

92kg x 0.6 = 55.2g (This time we need to multiply by 9 as that's how many calories fats have per gram) = 496.8 rounded up to 497 to make it easier.

So Fat = 55.2g per day which equals 497 calories.

Finally Carbohydrates, these will make up the rest of our diet so know we need to subtract the calories from protein and fats from our daily total. For me this is 2,500 - 736 - 497 = 1,267 calories left. Now to work how many grams of carbohydrates that equals we divide it by 4 (this is because carbohydrates have 4 calories per gram) = 316.75 Again to keep it easy I always round to the nearest whole so 317g.

So Carbohydrates = 317g per day which equals 1,267 calories.

So my daily macronutrient split would be

Protein = 184g

Fats = 55.2g

Carbohydrates = 317g

Now when you get to this point to might think mmm that seems like its going to be challenging to hit so you can go back and reset fats higher or lower then adjust the carbohydrates accordingly. Don't worry too much about adjusting them a little to find something that you like, also something that helps you fit in the foods you prefer to eat. Just remember to be successful we must not violate law 1.

Stay Strong


Volume 3 - Micronutrients

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