0

votes

Meat to Non-Meat ratio?

Answered on September 12, 2014
Created June 30, 2010 at 12:01 PM

What is the ideal meat-to-non-meat ratio?

Or, what is the ideal meat-to-vegetable ratio?

In other words: It's unclear to me if, according to our paleo worldview, I should eat 90% meat (including offal, bone, etc) and then 5% vegetables, 3% nuts and 2% berries? Or 30% meat, 55% vegetables, 5% nuts and 10% fruit? Etc etc (I just made up these numbers now as examples.)

This suggests a related question: for me, at least, meat and (non-starchy) vegetables are the vast bulk of what I eat. Not only am I unclear of how much of each to eat - but I'm unclear on how much of what else (nuts and berries for example) to eat, too!

Of course, some paleo genius is going to ask: what do these % mean? by weight? by size? by psychological space? etc. You can define it how you wish in the answer. Maybe the answer to my question isn't even a definitive %; it's more general guidance on how to proportion or ratio the different servings as compared to each other.

Clarification: there might be a meta-rule involved here; what would even be helpful would be general broad strokes ("mostly meat, with a touch of this" or "mostly vegetables with meat once every few days" etc)

Thank you!

morgan

84f2ebde3766d05896406e1b0ad5b079

(110)

on July 10, 2010
at 03:44 PM

Totally agree, and comforting to hear, the 40/40/20 protein/fat/carbs. I kept trying to eat 30/60/10 and I gained rather than losing. Since upping my protein it's snap for me to maintain a lower weight.

25819079a9264c10bcba7cd592e16216

(446)

on July 01, 2010
at 07:20 PM

I usually use my palm to measure serving sizes - so a hunk of meat the size of my palm usually works with a serving of veggies and/or fruit the same size on the same plate... sometimes half a palm for fruit also, www.dailyburn.com is a great estimator and puts % in a pie chart for you hope this helps

4b97e3bb2ee4a9588783f5d56d687da1

(22913)

on June 30, 2010
at 02:53 PM

Try nutritiondata.com or fitday.com The problem with percents beyond eyeballing and knowing the ratio of individual foods is most of us are unmeasured eaters We eat to satiety...

78ecfc8268ec58cdc189301f4b071088

(1670)

on June 30, 2010
at 02:40 PM

I'm a little stupid so forgive me. Can you help me translate your % (which sound great!) to average estimate portion sizes? Or is there a tool that does this? I don't know how to go from your great numbers to, what size ribeye and how much arugula and broccoli on the side to have....

4b97e3bb2ee4a9588783f5d56d687da1

(22913)

on June 30, 2010
at 02:12 PM

High activity day on maintainence also coincides with endurance events like running, although most running/sports I do fasted an fuel up after

  • 78ecfc8268ec58cdc189301f4b071088

    asked by

    (1670)
  • Views
    5.4K
  • Last Activity
    1408D AGO
Frontpage book

Get FREE instant access to our Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!

4 Answers

1
4b97e3bb2ee4a9588783f5d56d687da1

on June 30, 2010
at 02:11 PM

When my goal is muscle, I eat almost exclusively meat

  • High Protein, High Fat, Low Carb

When my goal is weightloss I eat high fat

  • High Fat, low protein, low carb, limited calories

When my goal is maintainence, I base my meals on activity

  • High activity days are 40/40/20 protein/goodcarb/fat
  • Low activity is low carb meat

4b97e3bb2ee4a9588783f5d56d687da1

(22913)

on June 30, 2010
at 02:12 PM

High activity day on maintainence also coincides with endurance events like running, although most running/sports I do fasted an fuel up after

1
25819079a9264c10bcba7cd592e16216

(446)

on June 30, 2010
at 02:01 PM

Hi Morgan!

In Paleolithic times, the % probably varied a bit according to season.

For your concerns, I think you need to consider your goals.

Since there is a wide range of Paleo within Paleo - some (Robb Wolf) advocate lots of protein filled in with fat and veggies, while others (Kurt G. Harris, Mark Sisson) advocate up to 80% fat filled in with protein and minimal carbs - it's important to know your body and what it wants.

??? Working with 40% protein, 30-40% fat, and 20-30% carbs works really great for some. If you are highly active, carbs help replenish muscle glycogen stores quickly. This usually looks like a huge hunk of meat with a serving of veggies and serving of fruit.

??? 60% fat, 30% protein, 10% carbs is spot on for others. If eating fruit or tubers packs on pounds (insulin resistance), this is a better option. This could look like a yummy coconut milk curry with meat and only the veggies used to season it.

Generally, staying away from nuts gives you a better omega6:omega3 ratio.

If I have a specific weight loss goal or putting on muscle, I use high fat, low veggies/fruit. If I'm working to maintain and extend my endurance efforts, I add in more veggies and fruits.

Most of the time, I listen to my body and what it is craving. Meaning, if I am craving lots of fat that day, I'll eat fat. If I'm craving veggies, I'll eat what's seasonal with my hunk of meat.

If your insulin resistance is good, experiment with what you like! You may enjoy 90% protein and it could work well for you.

Bones are always tasty, though, and should be enjoyed! ;)

78ecfc8268ec58cdc189301f4b071088

(1670)

on June 30, 2010
at 02:40 PM

I'm a little stupid so forgive me. Can you help me translate your % (which sound great!) to average estimate portion sizes? Or is there a tool that does this? I don't know how to go from your great numbers to, what size ribeye and how much arugula and broccoli on the side to have....

25819079a9264c10bcba7cd592e16216

(446)

on July 01, 2010
at 07:20 PM

I usually use my palm to measure serving sizes - so a hunk of meat the size of my palm usually works with a serving of veggies and/or fruit the same size on the same plate... sometimes half a palm for fruit also, www.dailyburn.com is a great estimator and puts % in a pie chart for you hope this helps

84f2ebde3766d05896406e1b0ad5b079

(110)

on July 10, 2010
at 03:44 PM

Totally agree, and comforting to hear, the 40/40/20 protein/fat/carbs. I kept trying to eat 30/60/10 and I gained rather than losing. Since upping my protein it's snap for me to maintain a lower weight.

4b97e3bb2ee4a9588783f5d56d687da1

(22913)

on June 30, 2010
at 02:53 PM

Try nutritiondata.com or fitday.com The problem with percents beyond eyeballing and knowing the ratio of individual foods is most of us are unmeasured eaters We eat to satiety...

0
667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on July 04, 2010
at 08:08 PM

I think it will help you if you think in terms of the three macronutrients that include all of what you mention: 1. protein 2. fat 3. carbohydrate

Like one responder mentions, it depends on how good your hormones are. How much control over insulin release you have. If you are healthy, have been exercising for a long time, have been eating well, do not require a lot of weight loss, etc you can prolly up the carb-intake. if however you are coming off the SAD, and want to lose weight and gain better hormonal control, i'd say youre better off with very little carbohydrate (that'd cover all your veg, fruit, and nuts) and medium protein and lots of fat. Maybe tinker and up the protein and decrease fat so that they're equal, too.

0
C1fb8666b1ae085507a76a4c494e4f0a

on July 04, 2010
at 07:21 PM

Why worry about percentages? Eat in a way that works for you. It's natural that your tastes and desires may vary throughout the year (week, season, etc). Like geelyn said, consider your goals and of course your current state of health (ie if you have metabolic syndrome etc, you may want to be on the lower end with respect to carbs)

Incidentally, meat and non-starchy veggies are what I eat 90% of the time. :) If you want to eat other things, then eat them. Fretting about how much of them to eat is pointless, IMHO, unless you have a health issue that warrants such concern, or you're trying to lose weight. If you want some strawberries, eat some strawberries!

As far as portion sizes, unless you have some kind of issue with hunger regulation (like I used to, so if you do then I completely relate), just eat when you're hungry and stop when you're not hungry anymore. If you grill up a big ribeye and can't eat all of it, then save it for later. If you eat a teeny one and are still hungry, eat more. If you do have a hunger issue, keeping carbs low can/does help get things back in order. When all is working as it should, if you overeat one day, you'll generally find that the next day you don't have much of an appetite.

Eat according to what your body needs... not according to a 'worldview'.

Answer Question


Get FREE instant access to our
Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!