Let’s face it, tracking macros can be a pain in the a%#&se. Let me show you the way I’ve been able to easily track keto macros, which has given me the ability to consistently track macros for the past 3 months without fail.
Why Track Macros On Keto
Tracking macros can be a very useful tool for someone who is struggling to lose body fat. It’s the way you can quantify the amount of food you’re eating, and how your body responds to certain ratios of macronutrients.
The reason why tracking macros is useful on a ketogenic diet comes down to “what we know”. Most of us know what our regular diet looks like, but oftentimes don’t understand how much protein we’re eating, which can sometimes be the difference between success and failure.
I personally see many people just track net carbs. But this doesn’t take into account how much protein or fat we’re getting, which can drastically change whether you are eating for maintenance, weight loss, or weight gain.
How To Track Macros On A Ketogenic Diet
The easiest way to track macros is by using an app like Cronometer, or Myfitnesspal. You simply enter in the foods you eat, and it calculates everything for you.
I suggest that you find your macros by using my Keto Macro Calculator, which gives you a good starting point, but it doesn’t take into account your previous eating habits or metabolic rate, so just keep that in mind.
Along with an app, you’ll also need a food scale, which can help you be more accurate with serving sizes, weights of particular ingredients
There are 3 different types of foods that you’ll be tracking:
- Single ingredients or Recipes – This type of food entry is quite simple. You will weight your food, and enter that weight into your nutritional calculator. Be sure that if you are cooking that ingredient, you also track the “uncooked” or “cooked” food type within your app.
- Packaged Foods – These foods can easily be scanned into your food app and tracked by serving size, or by weight. Generally, most apps will give you the nutrition per gram, so you can be specific.
- Unknown Foods (Restaurants etc) – This one is the most difficult. If the restaurant is popular, often times their nutritional information is on their website or menu, otherwise, you’ll have to take an estimate of what the food is made of, and enter those ingredients.
The Common Mistake When Tracking Keto Macros
Most people being tracking macros by simply entering in the foods that they normally eat into the calculator, or maybe what is available on a Keto Foods List. This method works for breakfast and lunch, but often times leaves you trying to fit foods into the macros that you have left for the day (if any).
I call this approach “The Macro Puzzle”. It often leads to weird dinners and crazy amounts of leftover calories.
This is NOT ideal, and you will not learn how to sustain this way of eating by tracking macros this way.
The Solution? Create Habits Based On Your Macros
Not many people do this, but once you realise that when you build your routine/habits around your macros, everything becomes easier.
This can come in many forms, so I’ll list a few down below that have worked for me:
- Pre-preparing protein (i.e. ground beef, cooked chicken, boiled eggs etc)
- Eating the same breakfast and lunch most days
- Work with a nutritionist/dietitian/friend that will keep you accountable
- The night before, quickly enter in a few foods you know you’ll love for the next day.
- Make dinner flexible since oftentimes you might have dinner with your partner or family
This may take a few weeks to get right, but once you have created your routine, adjustments to your routine can be simple. Tracking macros is a great tool, but it’s definitely not sustainable for the rest of your life. Ensuring that your routine reflects your goals and macro ratios is the most sustainable way to ensure you succeed over the long term.
Still Not Convinced?
You can also skip macro tracking altogether and purchase a copy of Easy Keto Meal Prep which will take the guesswork out of planning with over 60 low-carb recipes and 8 easy-to-follow weekly meal plans!