Macros vs Micros... and why they matter to you

You've heard the phrase "you are what you eat". Well, I'd like to take a minute to explain how miraculous that really is. Quite literally.  The human body has an unbelievable ability to take the foods you eat, break them down into smaller components, digest them, metabolise them and reassemble them exactly where they are needed.  Incredible right? There is nothing quite like this adaptive system anywhere on the planet.

Ergo: your body is a direct composition of what you put into it, and you will only be as good as the fuel that you feed it. It's safe to say that the quality of the food you put into your body is directly related to, and has a huge impact on your health and well-being. 

So whether we eat an apple or a steak our body breaks those foods down into their chemical parts, the macros, and micros.

Macronutrients describe three groups of nutrients that we call proteins, carbohydrates, and fats. Hence the term "if it fits your macros". These nutrients are energy rich and high in calories...they also happen to be the ones we identify with the most. 

The lesser known but by no means any less important groups of nutrients are called Micronutrients. They are further classified into vitamins, minerals, trace elements, phytochemicals, and antioxidants. In fact, the word Vitamin is a portmanteau of the words 'Vital' and 'amine'.

Depending on what we eat, the quantity and quality of these nutrients vary a lot. And it doesn't just come down to what we eat, it also depends on the quality of where and how those foods were farmed, processed and cooked.  Processed foods tend to have more macro nutrients than natural foods at the expense of micronutrients.  This is because processing food strips the foods of many of the vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals and gives the food a longer shelf life.  So cereal grains,

In the modern times we live in, we are certainly driven by choices which are convenient, but sadly this comes at a price. The processed foods that make up the contents of our shopping trollies are processed and have a tendency to be more macronutrient dense than natural foods at the expense of micronutrients. During the processing of these foods, they are stripped of the essential vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals to help give longer shelf lives.  This is largely because our farming and processing methods are driven by the need for quantity, not quality.  

At Vitamyn, we recommend a varied and balanced natural diet, with a good balance of the necessary macros and micros. Whilst we're not saying you have to go out there and adopt the paleo lifestyle immediately, lots of fruit, vegetables, seeds, nuts, meat, and fish should be the foundations of your daily menu.

It's very important to remember that there is a variation in the quality of food you buy and where you buy it from. Sometimes an apple is simply not just an apple, nor is a steak a steak. How your food was farmed, stored, transported all contribute to how fresh and therefore how nutritious it will ultimately be when you consume it. The ratio of macro: micro nutrients looks very different between free range/organic naturally fed animals and their intensively farmed counterparts. They are less likely to have synthetic hormones and antibiotics introduced into their food chain. Local markets and food fayres are a great way to ensure hand picked and nutritious fruits and vegetables make it into your pantry.

Your goal should be to thrive from your what you put into your body, not simply survive.  If you are interested in boosting your micro nutrient intake then take a look at our super convenient subscription service for micronutrients

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