Why should you track macros over calories? Really it comes down to science.
I recommend that anyone with (really any) fitness goals should be tracking macros over calories. Here is why:
Macros is short for Macronutrients which are Protein, carbs and fat. When tracking macros you focus on the grams of macro nutrients on the label opposed to the traditional calorie recommendation. Fat provides 9 calories per gram, while carbohydrates and protein each contain 4 calories per gram. So one gram of fat calorically is more dense than one gram of protein or carbs. Simply put it make sure you are getting a balanced intake. (Enough protein, balanced fats adequate carbs for your goal.)
100 calories of peanut butter vs. 100 calories of bread are not volume wise anywhere close to each other but the peanut butter would leave you much more satiated. However could put you way over on fat for the day if you had already had other portions of fat.
Each macronutrient yields a certain number of calories.
One gram of protein yields 4 calories.
One gram of carbohydrate yields 4 calories.
One gram of fat yields 9 calories.
One gram of alcohol yields 7 calories.
While tracking macros can seem daunting to someone that is less than a math whiz, there are tons of wonderful apps you can use to simplify the equation process. I recommend my clients use Myfitnesspal to track. There is a huge database of food and ingredients so you can easily enter and see how the day will break down.
The amount of each macronutrient that the body needs will be unique to the individual and their fitness goals. So even if you follow the macros that your favorite fitness model follows- chances are you will not yield the same results they did. The amount of macros a person should be consuming in order to lose weight is calculated based on age, weight and gender. The number of protein, carbs, and fat allowed per day are converted into grams. To accurately count your macros, it is recommended to use a kitchen scale. It can be done without a scale, although it is not as precise.
If you need coaching or would like to get your own macro recommendation please sign up for one of my personalized plans.