Diets and fashion have a lot in common. Like fashion, there has been a huge variety of styles come and go over the years, some of which seem to return every so often. People will embrace the latest trend, no matter how ridiculous it seems. There is always an "old favourite" that appealed more than the others that make us feel comfortable and confident. And as with fashion, trends change quickly, but you can't go wrong with a classic.
The last few years has been no exception, bringing a range of diets, some old, some re-vamped and some new, but unlike fashion, when it comes to diet, there is a right and wrong. That is not saying there is just one correct diet, simply that certain dietary principles are dictated by our physiology in the same way that one plus one will always equal two. Our body will always need water, protein, fats, carbohydrate, fibre, vitamins and minerals.
The ratio in which the body needs these main nutrients will vary depending on what you are trying to achieve, i.e. muscle gain, fat loss, how you go about it with respect to exercise and your health status, i.e. diabetes, heart health.
Firstly, how do you calculate the ratio of fat, protein, carbohydrate and fibre?
Take your total daily energy intake (E). I use calories, simply because the numbers are smaller and easier to calculate in my head, but kJ's are just fine.
Lets say E = 2000
If you want 35% of your diet to be protein, multiply E % protein you want. Remember, 35% = 35/100 = 0.35
2000 x 0.35 = 700 (Calories from Protein)
This is how many calories per day you need to get from protein. To work out how many grams of protein you need, divide the number of Calories from Protein by the number of calories in one gram of protein.
Since protein has 4 calories per gram,
700/4 = 175g
This is the number of grams of protein you need per day so that 35% of your daily energy intake is made up from protein. If you wanted 35% carbs, you would need 175g carbs per day, but if you wanted 35% fat, you would need:
700/9 = 77.7 (78g) per day.
NOTE: Remember too, that this means actual grams of protein, fat or carbs, not of food. If chicken is 20% protein, 100g will provide 20g protein, so you would need 875g chicken to provide the 175g of protein you require for the day.
|How Many Calories Per Gram Of Nutrient|
|Protein = 4 calories per g|
|Fat = 9 calories per g|
|Carbs = 4 calories per g|
|Fibre = 2 calories per g|