Here's a re-post of a thread I posted here months ago... it's long! But it should help, I hope.
I've created something of a "monster" here, attempting some calculations for new members. LOL
So in order to avoid repeated brain-strain, I'll post a cut-n-paste here of an email that I sent to a fellow Sparkie this morning.
Please heed my warnings about math skills and remember this is just a general how-to, not a definitive guide for everybody!
You have to start from the assumption that I'm *lousy* at math!!! Check ANYthing I quote you! LOL
The first thing you need to know is what calorie range you're aiming for, daily. On low-carb, we don't "count calories", but you have to have that information to begin with in order to work out the percentages for the macros.
The percentages I'm using are:
60-80% calories from fats;
20-30% calories from protein;
and whatever *gram value* you choose for carbs.
The carb value is something you'll just have to pick, depending on the plan you're on or whose recommendations you're taking. I've heard anything from 20 grams up to 100. One of the site hosts elsewhere made a remark about there being a "sweet spot" at 72 grams per day. I have no idea how they came up with that ... but I do notice from a purely personal standpoint that I stall if I get far above 50g/day. Keeping it less than 50 is a challenge for me, but that seems to be what "works", if I can just stick to it. [ sigh ]
So, all that gabbiness done with ~
to calculate your fat and protein macros, start with the lowest of your daily calorie range.
Multiply that by the decimal-value of the lowest fat range (0.60 for 60%). That will give you your *calories* from fat. To get the gram value, you must then divide the calories by 9 (because fat contains 9 calories per gram). That will give you a gram value for fats.
Repeat this for the upper range of your daily calories, and the upper range of your fat percentage (80%).
Then do it all again for the protein.
Say you choose to eat 1200 - 1600 calories per day.
Your fat range is 60% - 80%.
For the low end...
1200 x 0.60 = 720 calories from fat.
720 cal ÷ 9 cal per gram = 80.
The low end of your fat intake would be 80g per day.
For the upper end of the range...
1600 x 0.80 = 1280
1280 ÷ 9 = 142.
The upper end of your fat intake would be 142g per day.
So you'd set your tracker values to 80 - 142.
Protein has 4 calories per gram.
For the same theoretical daily-calorie intake and a protein range of 20% - 30%,
the low end would be
1200 x 0.20 = 240
240 ÷ 4 = 60
The lower end of your protein intake would be 60g per day.
For the upper end
1600 x 0.30 = 480
480 ÷ 4 = 120
The high end of your protein intake would be 120g per day.
You'd set your tracker values to 60 - 120.
I've heard advice that your protein range should be about the same as your *target* weight. So if your target weight is, say, 120 pounds, your protein intake should be right around 120g per day. You just add a little "wiggle room" around that to account for a range.
And the carbs are purely a set gram value, depending on your choice. If you care to do any calculations on it, the range should be 10% or so, and carbs have 4 calories per gram just like protein has.
Keep in mind that although the math is --hopefully-- right, you should adjust it for your own chosen daily calories, and by any other macro range you might prefer. The SP guidelines want us to eat 50% of our calories from carbs! yikes! But the ranges I quoted and calculated up there are general ones that seem to fit with most low-carbers' plans. If you're on a specific one, rework the numbers by their recommendations.
You've at least got the formulas to work from there.
Be sure to check my crappy math! LOL
And don't let yourself get too bogged down by the numbers. This should just give you an overview of whether you're "on plan" or not when you look at your values at the end of the day. You should still be judging your progress primarily by how you feel and then by your weekly weigh-ins. If there's a problem in either of those areas, that would be the time to go back and review your numbers and see if you can figure out where you went astray.
...the problem with people these days is
they've forgotten we're really just animals ...
We did not create the web of life; we are but a strand in it.
We don't have souls. We ARE souls. We have bodies.
| current weight: 214.0