Macronutrients: The Importance of Proteins, Fats and Carbs

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Proteins, fats and carbohydrates are often called the three basic building blocks of nutrition. Each one of these macro-nutrients plays an important role in vital processes and functions that take place in our body.

1. Proteins
Proteins play a big role in hormone balancing processes and help reduce belly fat. Proteins are critical for cellular growth, hormone formation, and organ function. A protein can be comprised by up to 20 amino acids, of which 9 are considered to be ‘essential’. Essential amino acids must come from our diet as they can not be produced by our body. Some excellent sources of protein include sea food, lean poultry meat, milk and milk products, eggs, beans and soy.

2. Fats
Despite powerful stigma, fat is NOT the enemy and should not be so demonized by society. Fat is in fact vital to our health and its consumption plays a crucial role in any diet. Fats help to control appetite if consumed in small portions and in the right form. Without the consumption of the so called “good fats”, both saturated and unsaturated, we’d be most likely having some serious nutritional disbalance. “Good fats” have a positive effect on your health, satisfy your hunger and help you lose weight. Some of the best sources of “good fat” include avocados, eggs, olive oil, nuts, nut butter and fatty fish.

3. Carbohydrates
Carbs provide quick fuel for our bodies, digested much quicker than proteins or fats. They break down into glucose (blood sugar), which is essential for our body and brain to work efficiently. Carbohydrates are classified into two main groups: ‘simple’ carbohydrates and ‘complex’ carbohydrates. Simple carbohydrates are, essentially, sugars whereas complex carbohydrates are higher in fiber and take longer to break down into glucose. When choosing carbs, try to focus on foods that are as close to their natural condition as possible. Great sources of healthy carbs include vegetables (all kinds, especially green, leafy vegetables), fruits, oats and oatmeal, seeds, brown rice, nuts, quinoa, whole grain breads, cereals and chia seeds..