Macronutrients – what are they ?

What are macronutrients ?

Macronutrients are nutrients (substances), that are required in large amounts for our body functions. We need them for growth, energy and other functions.

The word macro comes from the Greek language and means big or large.

There are three macronutrients groups need it the humans : proteins, carbohydrate and fats.


Most of the food is mix of all of three macronutrients, but generally they are classifying as one they contain most of it. Macronutrients we are counting as calories.

Proteins and carbohydrate are providing four calories per gram, while fats or lipids are providing nine calories per gram.




The word protein comes from the Greek word “Protos” which means First. Proteins are very important organic compounds made up of amino acids. There are twenty amino acids. Nine are essential, because our body cannot produce them. Therefore, we need to supply them from the right food.

There are two types of protein food. Complete and incomplete.

The complete proteins food we call those who contain all twenty amino acids and generally they are animal foods. Incomplete protein food are those who don’t contain all twenty amino acids, but if you are eating combination of these foods you can obtain complete protein food.

Proteins perform a lot of functions in our bodies.

One of the most known is that is building material for our muscles, bones, skin and any other tissues in our body. Also, proteins are involved in hormone creation, molecules transportation, create antibodies that prevent us from illness.



In the first place there are three different types of carbohydrates : searches , sugars and fibres.

We can also split them into two groups : complex carbohydrates and simple carbohydrates.

Simple carbohydrates are the sugars (monosaccharides and disaccharides) and complex carbohydrates are the starches and the fibres (polysaccharides).

Carbohydrates function is to provide energy for our body, regulate blood glucose, spare the proteins for creating energy, prevent ketosis, add flavour to our food.



Alongside proteins and carbohydrates, fats or lipids are the third macronutrient.

One gram of fat has nine calories. Fat or lipids also can be simple and complex.

Their primary function is to provide fuel for the muscles and for the other body processes.