Nutrition 101: Dietary Fats

Fats are the most energy-dense of the three macronutrients. Dietary fats are also the last of the three major parts of your diet. Fats are probably the most overlooked macronutrient behind protein and carbs because you only need 20 percent of your diet consisting of them. Fats are made up of the same elements as carbohydrates are, but the way the atoms are linked together is different. Oils (like olive oil) are an example of fats that are liquid rather than solid.

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Nutrition 101: Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates are the body’s primary and most easily available source of energy. All carbs are sugars; molecules containing carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen synthesized by plants through the process of photosynthesis or by animals through the process of glycogen synthesis. Some nice science words in that last sentence right? When I say carbs are sugars I don’t mean table sugar that you would put in coffee or on cereal. Carbs may be the most important part of your diet when you want to burn off excess fat. Some people believe that cutting carbs completely out of your diet will give you the results you want. While in some cases this will work, chances are if you don’t know when carbs are most useful and why they are useful, once you start to eat them again you’ll gain the fat right back.

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Nutrition 101: Protein

In the post “Nutrition 101: Burn Fat Fast!”, I mentioned how protein provides the building blocks for muscle tissue and is involved in the structure of skin, bones, and tendons as well as being involved in many bodily functions. Protein is composed of various amino acids that are essential to your diet. Although protein in a diet is more important for people who are looking to build muscle, it is still an essential nutrient for those trying to lose weight or cut up. While dieting, protein should make up approximately 40 percent of your diet and it should be included in each meal throughout the day. Foods high in protein that can be included in your diet are chicken breast, fish (salmon, tilapia, and tuna fish), lean steak, lean pork, eggs, and occasionally turkey. Other foods that contain a moderate amount of protein that can be included in your diet are cottage cheese, whey protein, yogurt, milk, beans (soy beans recommended), cashews and almonds.

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Nutrition 101: Burn Fat Fast

Everyone wants to have that perfect beach body, but most people aren’t willing to work for it. This series of posts will be about how changing up your diet and learning a bit about nutrition can help you reach your goal to lose that extra fat, regardless if you hit the weights or not. In this post, I’ll briefly describe the three basic nutrients you should have in your diet, the importance of water in your diet, how many meals you should be eating a day, counting calories, and a few other tips on how to burn fat. I’ll also be writing a separate post on each specific nutrient on how and when they should be incorporated into your daily diet and a sample 2 week diet plan. Whether you’re a bodybuilder or a couch potato, educating yourself more on nutrition can only be beneficial to you in the long run, especially if you’re looking to burn off some extra fat during the summer months.

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