Counting calories has always been the “thing” when it comes to dieting and nutrition. In knowing that consuming too many calories in comparison to your activity level can lead to weight gain, it has been seen as only plausible that by eating fewer calories can make you lose weight, right? It is true, by consuming less calories than you burn provides a deficit that leads to weight loss.
With general weight gain (or weight loss) being the focus, this means the focus simply becomes the number on the scale when we weigh ourselves. People can become obsessed with making sure they see a certain number on the scale, which in their minds tells the whole story of how they look and feel. In recent years however, people have begun to shift their focus from a simple number to a more lean, muscular build.
This is where the profile of the calories matters too.
When looking at the profile of the calories we consume, we have protein, carbs, and fats. These are known as macronutrients, or “macros”. These macros together make up the total calorie count you consume, so in a way you still are counting, but macros instead of calories.
Each macronutrient possesses its own number of calories:
- 1 gram of protein = 4 calories
- 1 gram of carbs = 4 calories
- 1 gram of fat = 9 calories
To give an example, a person eating 150 grams of protein (600 calories), 200 carbs (800 calories), and 70 grams of fat (630 calories), in the end are consuming a grand total of 2030 calories. So, once again, it is not only necessarily to count the number of calories, but also count the profile of the calories you are eating too.