This is part of an ongoing Science Made Simple series that aims to make the tough science a little more palatable. To view all articles, click here.
Macronutrients. That word is thrown around all over the place and can be defined several different ways. For these purposes, we will talk about them as The Stuff That Makes Up Our Food or The Ingredients to Your Food’s Ingredients.
The main players: Protein, Carbohydrate, Fat.
What We Will Learn
- What makes up a macronutrient
- Function of each macronutrient
- Good dietary sources
- Poor dietary sources that will make you unhealthy
What We Will Not Learn
- The nitty-gritty of each macronutrient
- How to draw
Let’s begin, shall we?
What it’s made of
Protein makes and fixes our body tissue, everything from the inside out.
Good dietary sources of protein
Animal proteins such as beef, fish, poultry, eggs, etc. are good sources of protein.
Poor dietary sources of protein that make you unhealthy
While there is technically protein in beans and soy, there is way more bad stuff that is going to harm your body than do well for your body.
What it’s made of.
Carbohydrates are made up of sugars like monosaccharides (one sugar), disaccharides (two sugars), and polysaccharides (many sugars).
Good dietary sources of carbohydrates
Vegetables and fruit are good sources of carbohydrates (I didn’t realize for a long time that they were even carbohydrates to begin with).
Poor dietary sources of carbohydrates that make you unhealthy
Grains such as bread, pasta, rice, corn, etc. are doing more harm than good. Sorry
What it’s made of.
Good dietary sources of fat
Poor dietary sources of fat that make you unhealthy
Margarine and vegetable oils such as canola and corn oil are bad news for your body.
There you have it–the basics of macronutrients. The information will indeed come in handy, though my drawings may have scarred your brains forever. My sincerest apologies.
(And a very big thank you to The Paleo Solution (pgs 49-50), The Primal Blueprint (pgs 85-94), and Wikipedia for their big science brains.