With the health and fitness industry growing day by day, we have hundreds of trends and guides thrown at us but, there is one that has caught many peoples attention and may have you questioning, what is all the fuss about macros?
I am aware of the effects of counting macros, as I track them myself and have studied the benefits and effects of eating differing quantities of each macronutrient.
Macronutrients are your vital food groups: protein, carbohydrates and fat. All of which, provide your body with sufficient amounts of energy and the nutrients it needs to grow and repair. Without the correct amounts of each them, your muscles and overall health may not improve and it may be what is holding you back from getting in those awesome gains that you deserve.
However, for people who do count their macros, it can be hard deciding what you should be fitting into them.
You should aim to cover as many of your macronutrients as possible in sufficient quantities, as food can fit into your macros and yet not be nutritionally beneficial (introduction to macros and kilojoules here).
Therefore, I have put together a list of my favourite macro friendly breakfasts as a helpful guide to nutritious and delicious meals.
My first favourite recipe is my macro friendly waffles.
They take up about 1300 kilojoules (the measurement for macros) which leave room for toppings and means your overall breakfast is likely to be about 2000 kilojoules worth. For someone like myself who consumes around 6,500 kilojoules a day, that still leaves a sufficient amount for lunch, dinner and possibly a snack.
As well as this, the recipe is super simple as all you have to do is mix 2 eggs with a scoop of protein powder, 1/2 tsp of baking powder & 3/4 cup water, while your waffle maker heats up. Once it’s at a medium temperature, pour the batter in and cook for 6 -7 minutes.
Another breakfast that I love, because of its simplicity, is toast.
But of course, this is snazzy toast fit for a health blogger and will look great in any pictures. On a slice of whole meal bread, add 50g of plain Greek yoghurt, sprinkle on ¾ cup of mixed berries (I use frozen ones as the flavour is enhanced) and drizzle 2 teaspoons of pure honey on top.
Altogether, it makes up around 880 kilojoules which, is a great number for a mouth-watering breakfast and an Instagram friendly picture.
Lastly, for when you need an on the go breakfast, my berry smoothie will be the one for you.
In a blender, combine half a cup of mixed frozen berries, a scoop of protein powder and a cup of unsweetened almond milk. If you want the smoothie to be thicker add more berries, but if you want it to be thinner, add more almond milk. This recipe is very adaptable, because you can add anything to it and it can be made more interesting by topping it with homemade granola. Without granola this breakfast will come in at around 680 kilojoules whilst with granola, it will take up roughly 1,780 kilojoules.
The key to a macro friendly breakfast is to use a range of ingredients that will satisfy your body’s need for carbohydrates, protein and fat.
The recipes I have suggested can each be adapted day to day in order to change the nutritional value of them or, simply make them more interesting- although I personally could eat waffles every day for the rest of my life, different people require different foods for their body to function normally. As a result, it is also important to get to know what your body requires, rather than following someone else’s guide. For example, a body builder may require a higher amount of kilojoules than a person who goes for a run every day, as their bodies are releasing different amounts of energy and therefore, they need to consume different amounts. If working out the kilojoules that you require becomes complicated (which it often does) apps that I mentioned early can be used and if you require a more specific guide, it is best to see a nutritionist for their professional opinion.
For example, a body builder may require a higher amount of kilojoules than a person who goes for a run every day, as their bodies are releasing different amounts of energy and therefore, they need to consume different amounts. If working out the kilojoules that you require becomes complicated (which it often does) apps that I mentioned early can be used and if you require a more specific guide, it is best to see a nutritionist for their professional opinion.
Of course as with anything, if taken too seriously macro counting can become tedious and make you miserable so if you happen to go above your recommended kilojoules one day, don’t be hard on yourself.
Everyone has days when you will go over your recommend allowance because it is acceptable to have a treat every now and again and if it is a day such as your birthday, you have full license to have a great time – if you’re anything like me, that will involve food.
On the other hand, don’t try and stay well below your suggested number of kilojoules. Just because you are below the number, it doesn’t mean you are being healthier, it may just mean your body is not getting the sufficient amount of nutrients that it deserves.
Overall, counting macros can be a way to stay healthy and doesn’t need to be complicated. Do some research, listen to your body as it will appreciate everything you are doing to take care of it.