I talk a lot about macros here because I watch mine pretty closely. But some of you have wondered what that’s all about, so I thought I’d explain the system here.
I’m leaning pretty heavily into the keto eating plan at the moment. It seems to do the best job of controlling my blood sugar right now.
WHAT ARE MACROS?
So what the heck are macros? Macronutrients are the main nutrient categorization of our food. Simply put, they are fats, proteins and carbs. And counting macros simply means that you maintain a certain balance of intake where those three categories are concerned.
For those who eat Keto, macros are usually somewhere in the ballpark of 80% fats, 15% protein and 5% carbs. This can vary a bit from person to person, but that’s the general starting point for most people.
If you don’t eat Keto, your macros can include just about any range or balance of those macros. It’s also important to note that counting macros is not necessarily the same thing as counting carbs. Your macros will depend heavily on your overall eating plan and will adjust up or down on a daily basis if macros are not your focus.
I recently switched my macros to have slightly more protein and guess what? My blood sugars went slightly higher too. Excess protein, particularly on a keto diet, creates the need for more glucose in the body.
I don’t take even this small change lightly. You see, when I was eating more fat and less protein, my blood sugar was completely in check. I lost 40 lbs. without much effort at all and life was great! But then it stopped, and this was not just an average plateau. It went on for weeks and weeks. I attribute this to higher stress levels which do affect insulin levels (I’m caring for my mother who is on hospice and she is nearly at the end) as well as macros that were now out of line with what my body needs to lose weight.
Now I’m not suggesting everyone on a plateau should mess with their blood sugar just to get some weight off. Please know you should talk to your doctor. This is my experiment with my body. I can’t recommend it to anyone else. I have no medical training.
But I do know that much of my issues with blood sugar stem from excess weight. So for me, I find the tradeoff worth it for a short time. A few weeks of slightly elevated blood sugar while I get the weight off some more, which in turn, will bring my blood sugar down. It’s a balancing act for sure and will be different for everyone. And as of today, I can say my experiment is working. I’ve dropped several more pounds and my blood sugar has come down with them. As you can see in my sidebar counter, I’m currently down 49 pounds and counting!
SHOULD YOU COUNT MACROS?
I think you probably already know the answer to this. Counting macros is right for you if it’s something you feel is a good fit and the doctor in your life gives you the green light.
That being said, you can count macros in any eating plan. It’s not specific to Keto or even low carb eating. You could even count macros on a vegan diet! Your percentages would look very, very different of course, but it’s really just about finding the balance of macronutrients that works best for your body. It’s a highly useful tool regardless of what eating plan you apply it to.