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View Full Version : Protein/Carbs/Fat As A % of Total Calories.



Thunderstorm
03-18-2007, 05:41 PM
I'm trying to get my nutrition down, reading all I can, etc. One thing I am confused about is this:

I've read articles that say your protein intake should be so many grams, etc. But, shouldn't it really be measured in terms of percentage of your total caloric intake?

To me, it seems that if your protein is just a certain number, then your carb and fat intake will be a lower or higher percentage of your caloric intake, depending on how many grams of protein you take.

Wouldn't it be better to have your caloric intake set then make your protein, carbs and fat a percentage of that depending on your goals?

I hope this makes sense.

Chubrock
03-18-2007, 06:28 PM
Percentages aren't good to use because they lead to confusion and often don't paint a clear picture of what you should be ingesting. If I was to say that you need 33% Carbs, 33% Protein, and 33% Fat but at the end of the day, you only ingested 25g Carbs, 25g Protein and 10g of Fat, then your diet wouldn't be sufficient for much of anything, even though it would be balanced (just an example). It is much better to outline minimum requirements based on BW such as 1.5 x BW for grams of Protein, .75 x BW for grams of fat etc etc.

Thunderstorm
03-19-2007, 06:38 AM
Your answer presumes that by knowing how many grams I ingested, I didn't know what percentage that is of my caloric intake. I'd still know the percentage and know whether I'm off one way or another.

Mr. D
03-19-2007, 10:03 AM
http://www.bodyrecomposition.com/Articles/percentages1.html
http://www.bodyrecomposition.com/Articles/percentages2.html

Read the 2 above links, authored by Lyle McDonald, on the faultiness of dieting by percentages.

Thunderstorm
03-19-2007, 01:53 PM
Mr. D, that is helps some, but that is sort of what I was getting at with my original post.

I know that simply adding more, say protein, then the percentage of carbs and fat will mathematically decrease. If I want to increase the other and reach my caloric goal, then the others MUST decrease, right?

I guess I'm having this problem: By just saying I need x amount of carbs, proten and fat, then I HAVE to know how many calories I need to begin with, right?

If I already know how many calories I need, then how do I know how many grams of protein, fat and carbs I need unless I assign a percentage? I mean, is there a chart somewhere that says, "If you weigh x amount and you want to cut, then you need x amount of carbs, fat and protein"?

Let's say I need 2000 calories a day to cut. Someone says (Just for the sake of this scenario) I need 1.5 grams of protein per body weight. What do I do now? Just pick a number of carbs and fat and make the calories contained therein make up the difference? That doesn't sound right to me.

How can I know how much protein, carbs and fat to ingest to reach my caloric goal if I don't know what percentage to take?

As you can see, I'm confused.

HELP!

Mr. D
03-19-2007, 02:07 PM
Fats and Protein are the only 2 that have required minimums. The minimums are 1g/LBM of protein and 0.5g/LBM of fat.

Lets say you are 200lbs and 20%bf. You want to start a cut at say 2000 cals.

At a minimum, you need to eat 160g of protein and 80g of fat, which brings your total to 1360, leaving the rest for any combo of carbs,protein,fat that you like.

As you can see protein and fat are essential macronutrients, carbs are not.

IHaveToCrushYou
03-19-2007, 02:08 PM
Why use percentages at all? It has been found that you need around 1 to 1.5 grams protein per lb of body weight.

So now all you need to know how much fat. Easy.

It has been found that you should get around .5 grams of fat for every lb of body weight. I forget the reason for this but it has something to do with endocrine functionality. Then you can divy up the fats into saturated, polyunsaturated and monounsaturated.

The rest can be carbs so go whole grain.

If your using percentages and then adding a bit more if the percentage doesnt provide enough then you dont need the percentage in the first place.

Mr. D
03-19-2007, 02:33 PM
Why use percentages at all? It has been found that you need around 1 to 1.5 grams protein per lb of body weight.

So now all you need to know how much fat. Easy.

It has been found that you should get around .5 grams of fat for every lb of body weight. I forget the reason for this but it has something to do with endocrine functionality. Then you can divy up the fats into saturated, polyunsaturated and monounsaturated.

The rest can be carbs so go whole grain.

If your using percentages and then adding a bit more if the percentage doesnt provide enough then you dont need the percentage in the first place.

Its LBM, not BW.

Thunderstorm
03-20-2007, 09:24 AM
So, as long as I'm in a caloric deficit (I understand how much I need to consume to lose a pound a week, etc.), and as long as my fat and protein amounts are accurate, the amount of carbs do not matter?

I've read more than a few article where carbs were cut drastically for cutting.

Built
03-20-2007, 09:28 AM
Largely because
a) unlike protein and fat, carbs aren't essential and
b) they can make you kinda hungry - cutting is a whole lot easier if you can control appetite.