Calorie Total vs Macros

Hey guys,

I have been using Cronometer for the last several months and have a question about my calorie total vs my macro goals.


  • I have a Custom Energy Target set up for 2,575 calories per day.
  • I also have macro ratios set up using grams.
  • I DO NOT have any variability built into that calorie goal. It stays at 2,575 regardless of exercise or TEF.

See the below screenshot. You'll see that my calorie intake for the day is 2,597 which is slightly above my goal while all 3 of my macro goals are below their targets.

From reading other posts, I understand this is because the macros in foods don't exactly align with the 4:4:9 calorie/gram ratios we use.

My question is: which should I 'trust'...maybe thats a bad word because I know both are accurate but in the example picture, should I look for foods to fill those macros and go over my calories or keep calories at my target and let the macros stay low?

I am currently trying to stay at a moderate calorie deficit as I am doing a body recomposition. This makes keeping my calories low important but also makes hitting my macros as important. If I don't get enough carbs or protein for example, I might not recover from my workouts as well.

I know there's not a right or wrong here but am interested in you alls perspectives!

Thanks in advance



  • Options


    Here's my input as a dietitian (and athlete):

    Calories matter more than macros when it comes to weight (losing, gaining, or maintaining). To be honest, I don't actually work with macros because they don't tell me if someone met specific targets needed for their size and I don't know much about the quality of their diets when only looking at macros.

    Protein targets I set for athletes range from 1.5 to 2 g protein per kg per day. There are also carb targets I'll use but these are more specific to the person's sport.

    Hope this helps!

    Susan Macfarlane, MScA, RD
    Registered Dietitian Nutritionist
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