Proteins, Carbohydrates and Fats

Keeping tuned into your nutrition when considering that new recipe, you may wonder how many carbs vs fats vs proteins do they contain? Not all recipes will have that break-down on nutrients, so we have this brief chart to help you know what foods fall into what category. Keep in mind that proteins give your body energy with strength to grow. Carbohydrate are a source of energy. Excess carbs that are not used up in energy turn into weight gain for many people which is why we are told to watch our carbs. We’ve been told to avoid fats. Our bodies need certain fats to support healthy growth and keep our internal body parts working properly.

Proteins – Proteins are one of the three classes of foods necessary for the body to grow and find strength from. Meats and fish are good sources of proteins while vegans will get their protein from nuts, beans, seeds and cereals. Some vegetables like broccoli have amounts of protein as well. If you ever start your day and haven’t eaten finding yourself with a headache, it may be a sure sign you need some quick protein. Remember that fact to keep your body powered for the day. That is why the experts say, breakfast is your most important meal of the day!

Carbohydrates (Carbs) – Carbs are one of the three main classes of food that are a source of energy. They are primarily starches and sugars that the body will break down into glucose that the body uses to feed its cells for energy. Chemically it is defined as neutral compounds of carbon, oxygen and hydrogen. They come in simple forms and in complex forms. Simple carbs are commonly sugars while complex carbs are starches and fiber. Excess carbohydrates not used up as energy tend to cause weight gain.

Dietary Fats – Fats in your diet are essential to provide your body energy and to support cell growth. Fats also keep your internal organs healthy and your body warm. Fats also help your body to absorb some nutrients and even produce necessary hormones. There are good fats and bad fats. The good guys are UNSATURATED FATS. Unsaturated fats will include polyunsaturated fatty acids and monounsaturated fats. Both polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats when eaten in moderation can help lower the cholesterol levels and reduce your risk of heart disease.1

Recommended Daily Intake Levels for the Nutrients (If you have a dietary health plan for specific health problems – follow your Doctor’s advice and ignore this information)

Nutrient Quantity Per Day
Protein 50 grams
Carbohydrates 310 grams
Fat 70 grams

Here is a list to give you an example where common foods fall in one of the three categories above. (counts are estimates)

Proteins g per 3 oz. or 1 serving
Avocado 2.9
Tofu 10
Macadamia Nuts 11
Salmon 40
Peanut Butter 8
Cheddar Cheese 7
Egg 6
Dark Chocolate 7.79
Scallops 20
Cod 41
Can Tuna in water 25
Lamb Chops 24
Turkey Breast w/skin 26
Hot Dog no bun 5
Bacon 5 slices 15
Tenderloin Steak 20
Ground Beef 15
Baby Back Ribs 20
Italian Sausage 16
Carbohydrates (Carbs) (g/100g)
Apple 13.8
Apricot 11.1
Banana 22.8
Peach 9.5
Pineapple 13.1
Pear 15.1
Broccoli 2.1
Red Beets 9.6
Spinach 7
Sweet Corn 19.0
Carrot 9.6
Sweet Potato 20.1
Yam 27.9

Carbs in meats appear with the way they are prepared. Frying in batter, breading, or adding sauces and gravies will be the main source for carbs in meats.

Dietary Fats 3 oz.
Avocado 29
Olives in brine 20
Tofu 22
Macadamia Nuts 22
Salmon 21
Peanut Butter 16
Cheddar Cheese 9
Egg 5
Dark Chocolate 12
Scallops 0.6
Cod 0.7
Can Tuna in water 0.7
Lamb Chops 4.2
Turkey Breast w/skin 3.5
Hot Dog no bun 12.8
Bacon 5 slices 15.6
Tenderloin Steak 17.9
Ground Beef 22.6
Baby Back Ribs 25.1
Italian Sausage 31.3

Certainly by looking at the above counts we are only giving you a breakdown sampling by category. Consider what the daily recommended counts are to keep yourself and your family in best health. Mixing a healthy diet with a few splurges are just common-sense dietary decision making.

Those with health issues are recommended to follow their doctors advise only for dietary recommendations.


1 Source: Nov.1, 2007. The Skinny on Fat: Good Fats vs Bad Fats