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Needing Guidance - tracking nutrients?


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Hi, I'm looking for some advice on not what to eat per se, but the nutrition breakdown of what I eat.

I'm challenging myself with the Whole30 challenge to break a carb habit. I am currently tracking my calorie intake as well as nutrients (fat, carb, and protein) intake. I started tracking out of curiosity, but now figure if I'm doing it, I better make it worthwhile.

My question, and what I need help with, is knowing how much or what percent of daily calories should be from fat, carbohydrates, and protein. Does anyone have any insight to this?

I am pretty active, I run 20+/- miles a week plus crossfit 4-5 times/week. I am eating 3 meals of a protein source, vegetables, and fat, plus a few snacks of either roasted vegetables or fruit (which I'm scaling back on) but also supplement with a larabar here and there, as well as a tablespoon or two of almond butter. I tried the sweet potato as post-workout food for a few days, but found I could eat through the whole batch in one sitting! I'm on day 5 of my 30 day challenge and don't really feel any different.

Thanks for any insight!

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One of the best benefits of Whole30 is to stop all that counting nonsense. Eat lean meats, lots of veggies, some fruits and healthy fats and the numbers will sort themselves out. Maybe a moderator will chime in and say something different, but that is what I get out of Whole30. Have you read the book It Starts With Food? It's a must. It will explain so much and it will satisfy the sciencey curiosity for you.

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slw600 is right - a Whole30 is done without counting. The guidelines for how much to eat are 1) at least 3 meals per day, 2) every meal should include a palm-size portion of protein, a thumb-size portion of fat, and the rest of your plate should be filled with veggies, 3) you can eat up to 2 palm-size portions of protein at each meal if you are hungry, 4) you can eat more meals or mini-meals if you are hungry. These guidelines are purposefully simple. Counting calories and calculating macro-nutrient ratios is part of an unhealthy relationship with food. Let it go.

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I am pretty active, I run 20+/- miles a week plus crossfit 4-5 times/week. I tried the sweet potato as post-workout food for a few days, but found I could eat through the whole batch in one sitting! I'm on day 5 of my 30 day challenge and don't really feel any different.

You run 20 miles a week AND Crossfit most of the week. Why do you think that eating through an entire sweet potato is a bad thing?

I agree with Tom on the counting. Stop counting. Just eat!

Additionally, you didn't mention your goals. I don't necessarily agree with or support the degree of your activity level, but it's hard for me to advise you one way or the other on that without knowing what you're trying to achieve

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Counting has been a way of life for me off-and-on for the last 10 years. It is a habit that I am working hard to give up! Prior to the whole30 challenge, I had been following a low-fat, high-carb diet. Eating a lot of fat scares me and I need assurance I'm on track. Yesterday I had just gotten worried as I had my first meal out at a restaurant and had a lot more fat than I've consumed previously. We had a pork belly as an appetizer then I had a lamb burger wrapped in lettuce with guacamole and sides of a green salad and braised rainbow chard with dried cranberries and walnuts (all was gluten free and dairy free).


I love being active and working out. I also train a group to run 1/2 marathons and coach crossfit.

Thank you for inspiring me put my goals down on "paper" vesus in my head.

There are many reasons I have decided to take this challenge - and yes, challenge it is!

I have never really had a healthy relationship with food. Eating has always been an emotional roller coaster. In the last few years, I feel I have overcome a lot of the food demons, but I still feel I have a ways to go. I am hopeful and determined to make this challenge help with continuing to make eating and food a positive experience.

I am a "sweet" addict - love the sugar candy and would often call a 1/2 - 3/4lb bag of it "lunch." In addition, I love salads and vegetables, but wouldn't eat as many as I should be due to filling up on breads or other sweets first. I have come to terms with my candy addiction and feel I need to make a change NOW.

I also have a bad habit of snacking or grazing through the day, mostly from boredom, so much that I am rarely hungry for "real" meals. Working from home has been beneficial in many ways, however it allows me the time to linger in the kitchen and rummage for just a bite of this or a spoonful of that all too often. I also have an issue with calling dinner the end of eating for the night - I usually go back and have some sort of dessert - a childhood behavior that I am working to recondition.

In addition, my family has a history of gluten intolerance as well as ulcerative colitis. Another goal of this challenge is to develop a more natural way of eating to aid in preventing adverse health effects in the future.

Ultimately my GOALS are:

1. Live Clean

2. Eat rounded healthy meals and stop snacking between or after

3. Overcome unhealthy emotional eating or thoughts about eating

4. Reconfigure my body to become leaner and stronger

5. Prevent adverse health conditions

6. Maintain an active lifestyle

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