Why You Should Stop Counting Your Macros, From An MD

Now, that’s not to say macros themselves aren’t important. It’s still a good idea to get a balance of protein, fat, and whole carbs on your plate. However, Davis notes that it’s not too difficult to get those nutrients in your diet, even if you aren’t tracking the numbers, per se. Our society especially emphasizes protein, when Davis notes we already get ample amounts: “The good thing is that [protein is] in just about everything that we eat, and it is very difficult to not get enough protein in the diet,” he says. That’s why he doesn’t talk about protein with his weight loss patients: “I never mentioned the word protein. We don’t talk about protein.” 

As long as you’re eating whole, nutritious foods, he notes, you should be A-OK on the macronutrient front—even with protein. No need to track your entire plate! Of course, if your diet is filled with ultra-processed foods, that’s a different story. “Food with zero nutritional benefit and, at the same time, zero satiety—you eat these foods, and you’re hungry again a few hours later,” he notes. If your diet consists of these blood sugar-spiking selects, perhaps you might fare well with some specific measurements. 

The other caveat, he notes, is with fiber: “We are not getting enough fiber and we’re getting way too much protein.” That’s the one nutrient he says it’s beneficial to track, because it’s crucial to get enough fiber in your diet. “It’s going to be very hard for someone to get fiber from fruits and vegetables alone. There’s just not enough.” That’s why he emphasizes plant-based sources of protein, which oftentimes are chock-full of fiber as well—think legumes, beans, and whole grains.

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