The Science of Macro-Morphing
Understanding how macronutrients and body types effect our goals.
However the right macro mix is an important consideration. Your body type, metabolism and weekly physical activity level all have some bearing on your ideal percentages for that moment in time. Therefore your ratio may and will change over time. It may change if and when your body weight or body fat fluctuates, or if you run into any plateaus.
As you get better at this you will find yourself manipulating your ratios throughout your fat-loss plan. This program allows you to change your ratio as often as necessary. Your nutrition specialist can help you with this. The macronutrient ratio many trainers recommend is 50% protein, 35% carbs and 15% fats. That ratio won't necessarily work for you because we all have a different body type, fitness goal and activity level.
Ectomorph: If you're an ectomorph, you're naturally thin with skinny limbs and a high tolerance for carbohydrates. Usually, your metabolic rate is fast. A good starting macronutrient ratio for you would be something like 25% protein, 55% carbs and 20% fat.
Mesomorph: Mesomorphs are naturally muscular and athletic. They have a moderate carbohydrate tolerance and a moderate metabolic rate. Mesomorphs can usually start at a 30% protein, 40% carb, 30% fat macronutrient ratio.
Endomorph: If you're naturally broad and thick, you're probably an endomorph. Endomorphs have a low carbohydrate tolerance and a slow metabolic rate. If you're an endomorph, try a ratio of 35% protein, 25% carbs and 40% fat.
A word about Gender: Gender is usually less pronounced of a factor than goals or overall body type, and it's far more prone to individual variation. However, it's nevertheless important for you to keep somewhat in mind as you work to find your ideal number.
In general, women are more efficient at burning fat and less efficient at burning the glycogen stored in muscle. As such, they may be able to operate on lower carbohydrate intake than men.
Research suggests a variety of reasons that women have a greater reliance on fats for fuel during exercise, including:
1. Estrogen enhances epinephrine production, the primary hormone that stimulates lipolysis (fatty acid breakdown).
2. Estrogen promotes the release of human growth hormone (HGH), which inhibits the uptake of carbohydrates and increases the mobilization of fatty acids from adipose tissue.
3. Women have increased blood flow to adipose tissue, which could assist in fatty acid mobilization.
4. Women have higher levels of intramuscular triglycerides (IMTG), a fat-based source of fuel that spares muscle glycogen during moderate to high intensity exercise. This sparing of muscle glycogen may actually give women an endurance edge when performing at high intensities against men!
5. According to one study, men appear to rely more on stored carbohydrate for fuel than women when doing the same exercise. One crucial additional factor is the total calories you take in. Even the perfect macronutrient ratio is ineffective if your calorie intake is too high or low. And along the same line, you can't expect to achieve a toned, muscular physique if you are unwilling to take training seriously!
This may sound like a lot to keep in mind, but don't get frustrated. You're building a healthier lifestyle here, not just doing math. Determining your ideal nutritional strategy will take time, and as your fitness goals evolve, your ideal macro ratio will too. But with determination, resolve, and a willingness to change, you'll keep progressing toward great things.