When searching for macrobiotics, you may have come upon articles on the macro diet. The macro diet is NOT macrobiotics. This diet is actually very different. A macro diet (also called counting macros diet or macronutrients diet) is a goal oriented dietary program. On this diet, an individual is striving to consume a specific amount of protein, carbohydrates, and fat daily. Unlike macrobiotic diet and lifestyle that centers around enjoying a variety of plant-based meals and incorporating healthy lifestyle practices. Let’s learn more about each to see the difference and why a macrobiotic lifestyle is the best choice for long term health.
What is the Macro Diet?
The macro diet takes calorie counting to the next level. In addition to counting calories, you are counting macronutrients, the grams of protein, carbs and fats consuming each day. The goal of counting macronutrients is to influence an individual to choose healthier foods. For instance, choosing salmon over a cookie in order to fulfill protein/ macronutrient requirement.
Here is how to calculate a macro diet plan:
If calorie goal is 2,000 than of those calories – 50% should be carbohydrates, 25% should be protein, and 25% should be fat. These ratios are flexible depending on if the goal is a healthy lifestyle, looking to lose weight or build muscle. For weight loss, calorie goal is reduced by 20% for a total of 1,600 calories per day. While bodybuilding is increased by 20% that is 2,400 calories per day.
- 50% carbohydrates: 2,000 calories/day x .50 (or 50%) = 1000 calories/day. Divide 1000 by 4gm to get 250 grams of carbs daily.
- 25% protein: 2,000 calories/day x .25 (or 25%) = 500 calories/day. Divide 500 calories by 4gm to get 125 gm protein daily.
- 25% fat: 2,000 calories/day x .25 (or 25%) = 500 calories/day. Divide 500 calories by 9 gm to get ~56 gm fat daily.
What is Macrobiotic Lifestyle?
Macrobiotics is based on habits and practices of long standing world civilizations that continue to live without chronic diseases. A macrobiotics lifestyle emphasizes a plant-based diet of vegetables, fruits, whole grains, beans, nuts, seeds and naturally pickled and fermented foods. While staying away from animal protein, dairy, processed foods, and refined sugar. Macrobiotic also includes a healthy lifestyle – regular scheduled eating, taking a walk everyday, and sitting down and enjoying your meals. To be completely healthy, you need to be feel vibrant and balanced mentally, physically, and spiritually.
3 Reason Macrobiotics is Better for You than Macro Diet
Counting macros diet is too complicated and stressful. Not only are calculations required to create a daily calorie intake plan and track macronutrients, it is also essential to keep a food journal and weigh your food. For this reason, it becomes an all-consuming diet that loses the enjoyment of food and sharing a meal with friends and family. It is just not a way to live. This type of structure does not lead to longevity.
Alternatively, macrobiotic diet and lifestyle wants everybody to spend quality time with family and friends, eat without any distractions during meal time. Common point of longevity is eating together.
Macro diet focuses too much on one nutrient – protein, fat, or carbs. The problem with this approach is missing important nutrients, minerals, and vitamins in one’s diet. Instead look at food as a whole. The best way to live healthy and get everything your body needs is eating a variety of vegetables, grains, fruits, nuts, seeds, and naturally pickled and fermented foods.
Furthermore, our bodies pick up or make the nutrients it needs and discards what it doesn’t need. Fat can transform into protein or carbohydrates. So there is no need to do any complicated calculations or count macronutrients.
Macrobiotic diet is not a long term diet solution. Can you imagine yourself writing down, weighing, and scaling all your food for you entire life? It is just not realistic. Food should be enjoyed and satisfying. Cannot get satisfaction from food with structure and counting calories.
Overall, macrobiotics is the best choice because when it comes to long term health, lifestyle is just as important as a diet. The macro diet neglects social or lifestyle factors that create longevity, happiness and vitality.
What if I am Trying to Lose Weight or Bodybuild?
Macrobiotics lifestyle is still the best option. If looking to lose weight, eating whole, unprocessed, plant-based diet is the way to get to your optimal weight and health. And if bodybuilding, plant protein is the highest quality protein over meat or dairy.