Confused about what and how much you should be eating?
Of course you are. There are several reasons why. Everyday contradictory “news” reports from “experts” pop up in your social media feeds and on websites you visit.
We approach nutrition from a different angle
We have recommendations and guidelines that can vary by massive amounts.
Let’s Look at Basic Nutrition Labels
Nutrition labels are required on all food products. These labels list:
- nutritional information
- serving size
- calories per serving size
- recommended daily value (DV) of micronutrients, protein, fats, carbohydrates
- total sugar and added sugars
The information and percentages on these food labels are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. They are also based on the RDA (or recommended daily allowance). This guideline is defined as the amount of nutrient needed to satisfy almost all the people in a certain group based on age and sex. However, the guideline is the minimums needed. They are not necessarily the optimum amounts for each individual body.
For example, let’s consider the nutrition label below. The total fat content of 6g per serving (at 9% DV) is based on a 2,000 calorie diet. This would make the RDA for total fat about 66g. However, if your caloric need is higher or lower than 2,000 calories, your RDA and DV will vary.
Protein Intake Requirements
First, let me explain how important is the distinction between RDA and actual nutritional needs.
The RDA for protein consumption is 46 grams for females and 56 grams for males per day. However, your actual daily protein requirements will vary depending on your lifestyle, body type, and activity level. There are studies saying that the RDA is between 30% and 50% below optimum levels.
Recommendations from studies show that light to moderate cardio demands 1.2-1.6 grams per kilogram of bodyweight. So, for the average American female who weighs 170 pounds (77 kilograms), she would need between 92 and 123 grams of protein per day.
For light to moderate resistance work, the recommendation is 1.5-2 grams per kilogram of body weight. For the average American male weighing 200 pounds (91 kilograms), he would need between 136 and 182 grams of protein daily.
By sticking to the RDA for protein, it would be extremely difficult to stimulate muscle protein synthesis. In essence, this refers to the process of building and repairing muscle tissue.
Without enough protein the body will not have the building blocks to build or repair muscle and bone tissue after working out. In other words, that effectively means no “gains.”
Remember that the daily value (DV) is derived from a 2,000 calorie diet and the RDA’s guidelines. Again, these recommendations are the minimum to keep our bodies alive, not working and feeling our best.
Carbohydrate Intake Requirements
Now, let’s look at carbohydrates. Carbs are often demonized in mainstream media outlets. However, the reality is that our bodies are designed to use carbohydrates as our primary source of energy.
Consuming the right quantity and quality is key
The RDA for carbohydrates is 130 grams per day for adults 19 and up. Each gram of carbs is equal to 4 calories. 130 x 4 = 560 calories a day from carbohydrates.
At the same time, the carbohydrate intake recommendation is 45 to 65% of daily calories. Surprisingly, that’s an almost 50% difference in calories from carbohydrate consumption daily.
Imagine trying to push through that last set of squats or pushups with no energy. We must be able overload the demands on the body to illicit the correct response. You need energy to push hard enough to make the changes you want.
Get a Certified Nutrition Coach so You Don’t Have to go at it Alone
A certified nutrition coach creates an evidence-based nutrition program that suits your personal needs, goals, wants, and lifestyle. For instance, we look at scientific information and optimize your caloric and nutrition need to get you to your ideal body weight. Moreover, your overall health and longevity are parts of our equation. Basically, that means incorporating vital micronutrients, sufficient hydration, and food preferences. Additionally, it includes mindset changes to help you escape stress, fatigue, malnutrition, and dehydration.
All of this is meant to move you toward the body, energy, and health you want, need, and deserve.
Fill out our contact form to have Coach Pete contact you directly and set you up with a nutrition coaching plan.
Also check out our FAQ about the Fun Fit Program.