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3/8/14 4:18 P

Thank you :)

I'm sure I'm not the only one so I thought I'd mention it.

ALGEBRAGIRL Posts: 1,925
3/8/14 4:00 P

Justeatrealfood, that's why I try to always include the summary statement.
You're welcome!

Edited by: ALGEBRAGIRL at: 3/8/2014 (16:03)
3/8/14 3:13 P

Find a ratio that works for you and don't worry too much if it doesn't match SP's recommends. Mine doesn't but that doesn't mean it's not working :)

Algebra I never check out your links because you don't use the Add a Link button at the top of the message box. It makes it so much easier to access. What can I say, I'm lazy ;)

ALGEBRAGIRL Posts: 1,925
3/8/14 9:27 A

'And even with a healthy food selection---if the same healthy meal was consumed 3 times a day there would probably not be the "variety" of foods included in the diet to meet all nutritional needs (or at least it would make it more difficult).

To feed the body properly, one must look at "moderation" of food intake for appropriate calorie intake, "balance" when selecting foods to assure macronutrient needs are meet, and variety within the foods selected to meet total nutritional needs.'

I came across this:

'Different foods possess different bioactive compounds with varied antioxidant capacities. When foods are consumed together, the total antioxidant capacity of food mixtures may be modified via synergistic, additive, or antagonistic interactions among these components, which may in turn alter their physiological impacts.'

This supports the idea that variety is important.

MICHELLEXXXX SparkPoints: (12,100)
Fitness Minutes: (5,920)
Posts: 3,750
3/7/14 4:28 P

"However, a person can not be fit and healthy using "any" macro nutrient ratio they choose. "

I agree. That's why I said "appear fit".

RUSSELL_40 Posts: 16,826
3/7/14 10:08 A

Yes Eelpie. While sugar has remained relatively unchanged( slight increase ), the combo of sugar and HFCS has doubled. This is because we cut fat, and the food tasted horrible. These changes caused our cravings. That caused our obesity epidemic.

Of course sugar increased a great deal since the 1890's when sodas were discovered, and we started refining our grain, which is why obesity was climbing slowly from then till the 1970's. It just accelerated since we changed to a low fat diet. We can argue that it is because we don't eat what the government intended, but these are the results of the " low fat craze ". The inability to stick to low fat, is part of a low fat diet. Saying that if we just ate what we were supposed to it works, assumes we can dismiss the fact that people are starving, and in their heart know that this isn't normal.

So yes, there are many factors when you change the national diet, and they all contributed to the obesity epidemic, but noting that it was caused by the dietary change, even if what changed was unintentional, still identifies the problem. If we increase salt, and sweeteners, when we switch to a low fat diet, and have cravings, and overeat junk food, then the result of low fat, is increased salt, sugar,HFCS, junk food intake, and therefore obesity.

The problem is that the government is stupid, and thought we would all just eat tasteless low fat food, and we would all be healthier. They never dreamed that food manufacturers would realize that sales would drop, and added salt, and sugar/HFCS, so we would eat the same or more calories. Amazingly a bunch of people who made millions creating businesses, are smarter than a bunch of Congressmen, who have never created anything, or even had a real job.

Thanks for pointing that out Eelpie! I always forget

EELPIE Posts: 2,700
3/7/14 9:43 A

"Our diet changed in the 1970's when we upped carbs, and cut fat. "

And HFCS was added at that time.

I know, I know...some people argue that HFCS does not contribute to obesity. But....I don't know. I avoid it as much as possible.

I do remember, however, the low fat craze that swept America at that time. Everything in our house was "low fat", lol. Didn't help anyone in my house.

RUSSELL_40 Posts: 16,826
3/7/14 9:35 A

As of 2008, 96 countries had 20 % obesity among adults. The U.S was 18th at 33%, and is currently 34%, so it is still rising. This doesn't count children.

That is half the world with 1 in 5 adults being obese, and yes, most of those countries other than island countries, are from Europe as well as North America. Norway 21.5%( 84 ), Finland 23 % ( 77 ), but also Czech Republic 32.7% ( 21 ).

The best country in Europe is Switzerland at 17.5 % of adults being obese( 111 ), and while that is about 1/2 of the U.S. the ones below us are catching up quickly.

Canada's obesity rate has tripled since 1985, from 6 % to 18 %, and expected to continue rising.

We can argue that the problem is the junk food, but have to stop and ask why you are eating more junk food. One reason may be that everyone following the new diet ratios ( 50/20/30 ), seems to be hungry, and considers cravings to be normal. When you get hungry, there is tons of junk food laying about.

There are 2 possibilities, because business fills demand. Without demand, there is no junk food.

One possibility, is that they knew you were going to get cravings, because they manipulated our food supply to make us hungry, and pre-made the snack foods, so that when we got hungry it was waiting there for us. They knew we would eat it, or else they could have lost all their money, and gone bankrupt.

This just happened because our current diet causes hunger, and they realized this, and made lots of junk food to fill the demand. This requires less gambling, and I think is more likely.

Either way, junk food wasn't the cause of our obesity epidemic. It certainly helped, but business doesn't build a product BEFORE demand rises. Junk food increased due to rising demand, meaning we already were eating more, and feeling hungry between meals. Business saw this, and increased fast food places, more sweets etc.

So, the hunger came first, not the junk food. If we were all still eating at home, and not having cravings after breakfast, the junk food would not exist. There would still be 2-3 restaurants in a town, and people would go to them once a month as a special night out. This idea of eating fast food 4 nights a week is not something we did just 30 years ago. All of my friends sat down and ate meals with their families, and brought lunches to school. Everybody had lunch boxes. Now they eat school lunches, and eat fast food at night, but this is a new phenomenon that was rare before the late 1980's. Our diet changed in the 1970's when we upped carbs, and cut fat. This demand for junk food, our increased craving, and the obesity epidemic have all accelerated since then.

Stop and ask yourself if the cravings came first, or the junk food. Younger people have never experienced life without cravings, because we feed children this junk food from birth now, but some of us just one generation ago, can remember playing outside for 6 hours a day, burning thousands of calories, and never having brunch, snacks, fast food etc ( extra calories ). We ate breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and played outside till dark. We didn't need gatorade, electrolytes, sugary drinks, Power bars, or more recently ENERGY drinks. We had all the energy we needed from our 3 daily meals, despite being much more active, at a time our bodies were growing. Now we aren't growing, we are much less active, eat more, and are starving at 10 a.m, after a huge breakfast.

And we say this is normal. The idea that fast food came before cravings, means that we were sitting around feeling full, and happy, and they built a fast food store, with no customers, and we just decided to go eat an extra meal, and started getting fatter, and hungrier. That is just b.s. We changed our diet, started feeling hungry, and fast food increased to fill this demand.

That " hunger ", is the cause of our obesity epidemic, not fast food, sweets, or any other thing we produced to fill these desires. We can argue how to fix the problem all day long, but we should stop and ask what has caused the problem ( these cravings ), and that might help us find the solution. If fast food is the problem, we could get rid of fast food, and you would all still be starving, so the problem would still exist, and you would just find something else to overeat on.

We aren't fixing the problem, because we refuse to identify the correct cause. So of course we fail year after year.

3/7/14 9:07 A

The brain and body is a delicate system. It is dependent on specific nutrient amounts for functioning and performance.

However, a person can not be fit and healthy using "any" macro nutrient ratio they choose.

Even when using the recommended macro nutrient ratio---this does not assure adequate nutrition.

One must still be aware of food selections.

And even with a healthy food selection---if the same healthy meal was consumed 3 times a day there would probably not be the "variety" of foods included in the diet to meet all nutritional needs (or at least it would make it more difficult).

To feed the body properly, one must look at "moderation" of food intake for appropriate calorie intake, "balance" when selecting foods to assure macronutrient needs are meet, and variety within the foods selected to meet total nutritional needs.


MICHELLEXXXX SparkPoints: (12,100)
Fitness Minutes: (5,920)
Posts: 3,750
3/7/14 8:24 A

I said "overall health", including all internal cellular processes and brain health. I think a person can appear fit at any macro ratio. On the other hand, the brain is a delicate organ, dependent on specific fats and amino acids for maximum performance.

3/7/14 7:50 A

Since you are just starting out, I am going to give you 5 simple steps for success.

1. Try to select wholesome, healthy foods at least 90% of the time.
2. Weigh and measure all your foods and beverages.
3. Stay within your SP calorie range! This is key.
4. And try to stay within your SP ranges for carbohydrates, protein and fat---these ranges are much wider than the pie chart. They allow for a greater amount of flexibility, food preference (for example your whole milk), food availability, your budget, etc. And these ranges are the recommendation for overall health.
5. Ignore (YES, I said ignore) the SP pie chart for now. It is too restrictive and it will make you crazy.

Your SP Registered Dietitian

Edited by: DIETITIANBECKY at: 3/7/2014 (07:51)
JENNILACEY SparkPoints: (81,972)
Fitness Minutes: (86,286)
Posts: 2,489
3/7/14 5:40 A

It is also the recommendations for macro breakdown of all of Northern Europe... who are not suffering from an obesity epidemic like the US. There is a big difference between consuming 50g of carbs from a Starbucks speciality coffee and 50g of carbs from whole food like vegetables, fruits, grains, legumes and lentils.

imo, it isn't macros that make people fat. It's the type of food that make up those macros. There are plenty of fit people who eat high carb diets. Myself included. I think it's necessary to look elsewhere to point the finger at the obesity epidemic in the USA and many other developed countries following their suit.

Edited by: JENNILACEY at: 3/7/2014 (05:45)
MICHELLEXXXX SparkPoints: (12,100)
Fitness Minutes: (5,920)
Posts: 3,750
3/7/14 5:32 A

When starting, I recommend this: read a lot, eat natural foods, move as much as possible.

NMNEWWMN Posts: 120
3/7/14 3:34 A

Yes, I am thinking of checking into a different ratio. I have had the mindset of more fats and proteins for awhile. I am just barely starting this, though, and will have to do a trial and error. I have had my head in the sand for several years now, and just ate what I wanted, and it has almost destroyed me, thank God I have actually not had any major health problems, yet. Will just have to see what works for me, I guess.

MICHELLEXXXX SparkPoints: (12,100)
Fitness Minutes: (5,920)
Posts: 3,750
3/7/14 3:23 A

I would recommend a different ratio, one higher in fat and protein. The pie chart you mention depicts the standard American dietary guidelines. To see how that is working out, I encourage looking at the overall health and obesity rates in America.

Edited by: MICHELLEXXXX at: 3/7/2014 (03:24)
NMNEWWMN Posts: 120
3/7/14 2:43 A

thanks, I think I had that ratio backwards. I am going to have to cut back on fats, the milk is what is getting me.

ANARIE Posts: 13,179
3/7/14 12:15 A

What DATA have you seen saying that whole milk is "better" than other kinds? You may have seen opinions to that effect, but there's no actual data suggesting that fattier milk is better for adults. It definitely IS better for babies under age 3, but that's because they need saturated fat to build the myelin around their nerve fibers. Adults don't need nearly as much saturated fat. And remember that whole milk is about 3% milk fat, so going down to 1% or 2% isn't going to make you fat deficient; it just saves calories.

Skim milk sometimes has extra milk solids, which are almost pure protein, so if you're worried about protein, switching from whole to skim might be one way to get a little closer to your goal. Compare labels to see if your particular brand has that little protein boost.

But as others have already said, 20% calories from protein is plenty. People who are restricting calories sometimes find that they prefer a little more, but that's a preference and comfort issue, not a health advantage. And age may make a difference, too. There's some preliminary research suggesting that middle aged people are better off reducing how much protein they eat, especially from animal sources. Two human studies and a couple of animal studies have found that excess protein correlates to higher cancer and heart disease risk. Personally, I'm a bit skeptical that they would be able to separate protein consumption from animal fat consumption and from low consumption of healthy carbs (especially since there are micronutrients in whole grains that are KNOWN chelating agents-- they suck the heavy metals out of you), but it's still something to think about. Since high-protein foods tend to be expensive and most people don't really need more than about 10-15% of calories from protein, it's certainly not necessary to go all the way to 30% if you don't feel it helps you control calories.

RUSSELL_40 Posts: 16,826
3/6/14 11:59 P

Just so you know the protein in this ratio is 20 %, and the fat is 30 %. If you are just over 20 % fat, you are a bit low on fat, and almost 30 % is pretty high protein.

NMNEWWMN Posts: 120
3/6/14 10:21 P

Thanks for all responses. I have been going over on fats because I haven't given up my whole milk yet and some cream..I might find I will have to, but I see all kinds of data about whole milk being better than the two percent and fat free. Does anyone have any comments about this?
Proteins have been a little less than the thirty percent and carbs are about fifty or a little more, but they are coming from whole wheats and healthy carbs.

3/6/14 7:34 P

The carb, protein and fat ranges used on the SP plan come from The Food and Nutrition Board of the Institute of Medicine, the National Academies.

The carb range is 45-65% of calories coming from carbohydrate.
Of course we encourage healthy types of carbs---this includes: fruit, milk, yogurt, non-starchy vegetables, starchy vegetables, beans, lentils, legumes, whole grains, oats, popcorn, etc.

We have found that some members like to "visualize" this breakdown in a pie-chart form. So for this graphic we use sort of a "middle of the road" approach for the carbs, protein and fat. For carbs we use 50%.

For more on the ranges, click here:

Hope this helps with your question

Your SP Registered Dietitian

MAMA_CD Posts: 1,507
3/6/14 7:30 P

I don't eat according to traditional ratios but prefer a low carb eating plan of about 15-20% carbs

EXOTEC Posts: 3,327
3/6/14 7:07 P

The percentages on that pie chart - I believe - are based upon the USDA recommendations. I don't follow those at all. I calculate my own macros and the daily totals page builds me my own pie chart based upon what I've consumed.
It entertains me a bit to compare my pie chart to the standard one from SP shown beside it... but 50% carbs would blow my whole dietary plan right straight to %#$%@.
I do get carbs - but nothing like 50%, and they're from healthy sources, usually.

FLORADITA SparkPoints: (63,888)
Fitness Minutes: (41,058)
Posts: 541
3/6/14 5:30 P

When it suggests 50% for carbs, they are not suggesting that 50% of your diet should be cake, cookies, bread, crackers etc. Fruits and vegetables along with limited amounts of whole grains are the type of carbs that should make up 50% of what you eat. Protein and fats should also be from healthy sources such as fish, legumes, lean meats, avocados, olive oil etc. Western diets tend to be higher in protein than necessary, the idea of protein at every meal is an unhealthy myth. Vegan and vegetarians fare the best in terms of health outcomes of every kind, cancers, heart disease, diabetes. If that is not possible for people, keep protein to a minimal and lean towards legumes (beans, lentils etc.) fish and chicken.

BUNNYKICKS Posts: 2,433
3/6/14 3:23 P

It's a general guide, and it suits the needs of the average person.

Lots of people tweak the recommendations to their personal tastes or dietary requirements. You'll find people that eat less carbs and more fat, less carbs and more protein, less carbs and more protein-and-fat, more carbs and less fat.... and so on.

Use it as a good "starting point" and adjust to your personal needs, from there.

NMNEWWMN Posts: 120
3/6/14 3:11 P

50% carbs seems way to much carbs, it seems like we should be eating more protein. Does anyone have any ideas about this?

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