40 30 30 Diet Plan and Nutrition Basics

40 30 30 Diets are extremely popular.

When implemented properly, the 40% carbohydrate, 30% protein, and 30% fat nutrition program will help most people make significant progress in shedding excess pounds by priming the body to burn fat tissue.

The good news is it’s fairly straight-forward to use the formula to prepare your meal plans. First, you need to figure out your daily maintenance calorie requirements. That is, how many calories, given your level of activity, you need to consume to maintain your current weight.



Check out this helpful guide to calculate your recommended daily calorie allowance.

Counting Calories In 40 30 30 Diet

If you don’t already have an idea of your maintenance calorie needs, one way to figure it out is to keep a calorie intake journal for 5-7 days. If your goal is to maintain your current weight then you simply divide the total calories consumed by the number of days and you’ll get your daily intake.

Once you have your maintenance level (let’s say for example it’s 2250 calories), get your calculator out and subtract 20% from that number to find your target level. So in our example it’s 2250 – 20% = 1800.

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If we follow this example through, then you should shoot for 1800 total daily calories at a 40-30-30 ratio. Doing the math, you’ll find that this translates into 720 calories from carbohydrates, 540 calories from protein, and 540 calories from fat.

At this point, you need to remember that there are 4 calories in every gram of carbohydrate and 4 in every gram of protein, but there are 9 calories in every gram of fat.

The next step is to translate your calorie intakes into gram amounts:
720 divided by 4 = 180 grams of carbohydrates.
540 divided by 4 = 135 grams of protein.
And 540 divided by 9 = 60 grams of fat.

The final step is to take your results and divide by the total number of meals you can fit in per day (should be in the 4-6 meals range).

We’ll use 5 meals per day as our example.

So our final numbers end up being:
36 grams of carbohydrates, 27 grams of protein, and 12 grams of fat.

These are your target numbers for each meal you eat. Of course, you may not be able to hit the target at every meal, but you should use these numbers as solid guidelines.

I’ve found with many clients that using prepared meals and/or 40-30-30 nutrition bars or shakes are a great way to help meet your targets.