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The Difference Between Calories and Macros

Fitness pro or not, you have definitely heard of calories. A calorie is just a unit of energy which describes how much energy comes from the food you are about to eat. There are calories in everything that we consume but not all calories are equal.

Macronutrients (macros) are what make up the amount of calories that a food has. You’ve probably heard of protein, carbohydrate and fat before but do you know how much of each equals the calories in your favorite meal? Probably not!

Here’s a quick breakdown:

- 1 gram of protein = 4 calories

- 1 gram of carbohydrates = 4 calories

- 1 gram of fat = 9 calories

- bonus! 1 gram of alcohol = 7 calories

Info from HEAT Fitness about Macronutrients

This math is what makes up the calories on our favorite packaged foods. For example, when you look at a label and it says the food has 10g of fat, 5g of carbohydrates and 15g of protein. That food has around 170 calories in it. (15x4 + 5x4 + 10x9 = 170)

Most people don‘t pay close attention to the amount of macros they consume on a daily basis. But macros become very important once you start taking your nutrition more seriously. Especially if you workout and are trying to lose weight. It is important to have the correct balance of macros each day to fit your goals.

How do you know how much protein, carbohydrates and fat to eat each day? Well that is a more complicated question. There are many factors that go into deciding how much of each macro you should eat which is why hiring an experienced nutrition coach can help you get the best results.

If you are trying on your own, using a food logging app like MyFitnessPal and Chronometer can help you.

If you have given that a shot and are still having a hard time, fill out the form on my website for a free nutrition consultation. We will chat about your goals surrounding nutrition and fitness and find a plan that works for you!

You can also call or text me at 520-314-7834 or email me at

Thanks for reading and start paying attention to those food labels!

Coach Allie

Owner of H.E.A.T. Fitness

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