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How Do I Improve a Carb Protein Fat Ratio?

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  • Written By: Helen Akers
  • Edited By: Jessica Seminara
  • Last Modified Date: 09 December 2016
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To improve a carb protein fat ratio, an individual should first determine his daily caloric needs. Knowing how many calories are needed to maintain or lose weight is important since the carb protein fat ratio will need to be calculated from this figure. A healthy carb protein fat ratio for most adults is typically 20 percent protein, 30 percent fat, and 50 percent carbohydrates.

There are many online tools that can help determine the proper amount of calories to consume. Factors such as gender, age, current weight, desired weight, and physical activity level all determine the amount of calories that are appropriate for each person. If an individual desires to lose weight, improving the carb protein fat ratio alone will not do the trick. A combination of increased physical activity and calorie reduction is often needed.

Once the appropriate amount of calories has been determined, the second step is to multiply the recommended carb protein fat ratio by that amount. For example, an individual who consumes 2,000 calories a day would need approximately 400 of those calories to come from protein, 600 from fat, and 1,000 from carbohydrates. The third step in making improvements would be to determine what types of food sources would fit into the carbohydrates, protein, and fat categories.

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Some of the obvious sources of carbohydrates are whole grains, pastas, breads, and sweets. Many fruits and vegetables also fall into the carbohydrates category, although they are typically considered to be complex carbohydrates rather than simple sugars. There are some fruits that tend to be higher in simple, starchy sugars than others, such as the banana.

Certain food sources, such as meats, sometimes fall into both the protein and fat categories. Lean protein sources, including salmon, tuna fish, and chicken are great dietary choices to help satisfy a good carb protein fat ratio. Vegetarian sources of protein include soy and beans. Dairy sources of protein include milk, cheese, yogurt, and eggs.

Although it is somewhat tedious and difficult to keep track of exact ratios, some simple meal preparation and planning strategies can be used to improve the ratio between carbohydrates, protein, and fat. Try eating from a variety of food groups at each meal and eliminate high-fat, high sodium, high sugar, and processed foods. Replace as much white pasta and breads with whole grain alternatives instead. In addition, try consuming the majority of carbohydrates during breakfast and lunch and add in protein, fruits and vegetables later in the day.

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clintflint
Post 3

@MrsPramm - That's only going to work if you've already got the knowledge of what ratios individual foods contain. Peanuts, for example, have both fat and protein and so does steak. Cooking something in oil adds fat, adding whole grains means it will have somewhat fewer carbs than processed grains and so forth. And that's not even getting into meals like meat pies or casseroles where all the ingredients are mixed together and it's impossible to tell just by looking what the ratios might be.

I don't encourage people to constantly measure and evaluate what they are eating because I think that's too restrictive, but it can really help to do it for a couple of weeks to get a good idea of what needs to be done to change and what works well as it is.

MrsPramm
Post 2

@umbra21 - I don't even think it's necessary to keep such a close eye on your carb, fat and protein intake. All you really have to do is make sure that each meal is well proportioned and that should do it.

A plate is the perfect way of doing this as well, since you can just divide it up and see how your food fits. If you've got a massive steak and only a tiny handful of greens then you've probably got to increase your carbohydrate intake. If your plate is full of pasta with only a creamy sauce to top it, then you need to work on increasing your protein.

umbra21
Post 1

A lot of people will respond better to different ratios of carbohydrates, fat and protein. There are plenty of diets that try to cut out carbohydrates altogether (although that's impossible and not a good idea) but just decreasing the ratio can help a lot, since fat and protein tend to be better for people with particular conditions or who need to feel full for longer.

I've found that there are some really good tools online that will tell you your percentages if you just enter in the kinds of food you eat every day. You just have to make sure you know what to aim for, as it will be different depending on what you are hoping to achieve and how different ratios make you feel.

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