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Get the right mix of macronutrients

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Get fit with the right mix of ingredients. Nutrition is an essential cornerstone of our physical and mental performance, health, and recovery. Among other things, the right combination of three macronutrients – carbohydrates, protein, and fat – is crucial. Find out the foods containing these three nutrients and how you can ensure your body gets the optimal supply. 

What are macronutrients

Macronutrients are the essential core suppliers of energy to our body, and they form the foundation for all metabolic processes. Particularly after exercise, it is important to recharge our batteries with the right combination of carbohydrates (50-65%), fats (20-30%) and proteins (15-25%). Here is an overview of the three macronutrients

Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates are the most important sources of energy for our brain and body. Unlike fats and proteins, energy from carbohydrates is quickly available and the body can easily convert the nutrients. Carbohydrates are divided into single/double and multiple sugars and are converted into energy faster or slower depending on the sugar. At the same time, carbohydrates often have the bad reputation of being unhealthy and fattening. However, it depends very much on which form of carbohydrates we eat. Here is an overview of good and not-so-good sources of carbohydrates:

Good sources of carbohydrates:

  • Complex carbohydrates from potatoes, legumes, cereals, flour, wholemeal pasta, bread and rice.
  • Fruits such as bananas, apples, pears, citrus fruits and berries.
  • Vegetables such as cabbage, leafy greens, lettuce, tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, etc.

Less-good sources of carbohydrates:

  • Sugary foods such as sweets, soft drinks, jams, etc.
  • White flour products such as toast, biscuits and pastries
  • Canned fruit, such as tinned pineapple and stewed apples

Fat

Fat consists of fatty acids and is divided into saturated, monounsaturated, and polyunsaturated fatty acids. Primarily, fats are important for the following six functions:

  • Vitamin absorption
  • Hormone Production
  • Saturation
  • Taste
  • Organ protection
  • Energy reserves


When consuming fat, we should make sure that we consume about twice as many unsaturated fatty acids as saturated fatty acids. Monounsaturated fatty acids are mainly found in the following foods:

  • Rapeseed Oil
  • Olive Oil
  • Nuts: hazelnuts, macadamia, almonds, pecans, nut puree
  • Grains and seeds

 

Polyunsaturated fatty acids are essential, i.e., they cannot be produced by our body itself and must be taken in with food. They are found mainly in the following foods:

  • Omega 3: Fish – such as salmon, herring, tuna – and flaxseed oil/seeds, chia seeds and walnuts.
  • Omega 6: sunflower oil, soya oil, sesame seeds and peanuts.
  • The ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 fatty acids in our diet should be about 1:5.


Saturated
fatty acids should not exceed 10% of the macronutrients in our diet. They are mainly found in the following foods:

  • Animal fats: Butter, lard, meat & sausages & dairy products such as high-fat yoghurt.
  • Vegetable fats: margarine, coconut oil & palm oil

Proteins

Proteins – like polyunsaturated fatty acids – are, in part, an essential macronutrient and must be in your diet, therefore. Proteins consist of amino acids and serve to build up the body’s own proteins, such as muscles, connective tissue, hormones, antibodies and more. Athletes, in particular, have a greater need for protein to promote the growth and regeneration of their muscles.

Here is an overview of the top 10 protein sources from plants, dairy products, and meat/fish.

Plant-based:

  1. Almond flour – 53g
  2. Soya shreds – 47g
  3. Soyabeans – 36g
  4. Seitan – 30g
  5. Red lentils – 26g
  6. Peanuts – 25g
  7. Linseed – 22g
  8. Hemp seeds – 21g
  9. Tempeh – 20g
  10. Chickpeas – 20g


Milk & dairy products:

  1. Hard cheese – 30g
  2. Skyrella – 24g
  3. Camembert – 19g
  4. Feta – 19g
  5. Cottage cheese – 13g
  6. Low-fat quark – 12g
  7. Cream cheese – 12g
  8. Egg – 12g
  9. Skyr – 11g
  10. Greek yoghurt – 6g


Meat & fish:

  1. Smoked ham – 24g
  2. Turkey breast – 24g
  3. Saddle of venison – 24g
  4. Chicken breast – 23g
  5. Tuna – 23g
  6. Fillet of breed – 21g
  7. Seafood – 21g
  8. Salmon – 20g
  9. Cod – 19g
  10. Pike fillet – 18g

 

If you would like to read more in depth about the three macronutrients and look for suitable recipes that provide you with an ideal nutrient mix, feel free to check out the following excellent source articles:

Carbohydrates: https://fruehlingszwiebel.com/kohlenhydrate-das-grosse-1×1/

Fat: https://fruehlingszwiebel.com/fett-das-grosse-1×1/

Proteins: https://fruehlingszwiebel.com/protein-eiweiss-bedarf/

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