Do You Really Need to Count Calories

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Nowadays calorie counting is part of every other persons routine either if he/she wants to lose weight or be more fitter. Especially if you are coming from a nutritionist, not counting calories may really sound stupid. But, did you ever think if it was really necessary to count calories? Or they are something that the food and weight lose industry have always hyped about? Do you think being healthy or measuring health in numbers is rewarding?

I have heard from few people that, they don’t count calories on the weekend. But, what’s the whole idea about it? When the body is hungry, it demands for more nutrients and not just the calories. Also once you start counting calories, it takes away the joy of eating. When cooking food, you don’t have to count calories. Also while eating healthy food, there is no need to count calories, but control the portion size. On reading further you can make out yourself if it is really necessary to count calories:-

1. Do You actually Absorb all the Calories that You eat?

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No matter how efficient your digestive track is, you don’t absorb each and every calorie from the food you eat. The truth is that we all digest food differently, only a certain part of the calories is actually absorbed and it depends upon the type of bacteria in the gut(stomach and intestines) and also on the macronutrient content of the food you are consuming. Many foods just pass through the body undigested. Evan the scientists warn, not to depend on calories if you want to lose weight and be fit for rest of your lives, especially those on the nutritional labels as the numbers differ from those that we actually absorb.

2. Myth: Its all about Calories!

I have seen a lot of people who are weight conscious and for them gulping a glass of sugary drink or gorging on potato chips is fine as long as they workout an extra 30minutes at the gym. I’m sorry if you are one of them. Calories aren’t much more than a number. Counting them is not a perfect solution if you want to lose weight. Yes, calories are there, they are vitally a measure of how much energy the food is comprised of and eating in too large quantities is not good for the health but, they are not an entire picture.

See, if you are counting calories that you are taking in, you should know the calories that you take out as well or you can say that the calories that you consume! What we eat are the calories that we take in, that’s easy. Calories out is where it gets a little puzzling. Calories are burned even while resting as we breathe, the energy is used to manage basic day to day functions. We burn calories to digest food or doing any sort of activity even like fidgeting and shivering.

3. Nutrients and Calories vary

calorie nut.jpgThe calories and nutrients differ by season, variety and ripeness. While its fine to have the evaluation of the nutrient content of food, there is no way food enterprises could analyse every variety of fruit or vegetable from every zone, from every season and from different growing conditions.

4. More Calories = Weight Gain?

There is no exact science which proves that more calories equals weight gain. If calorie counting would have worked for long period, America would have been the slimmest country on the earth. It is important to realise that the counting calorie approach does have its limitation. Cutting calories lead to momentary weight loss and the results don’t last forever. According to a review of studies by UCLA(University of California, Los Angles) scientists, as average of 41percent of people gain back more weight than they lost within a year after starting to diet and this figure doesn’t account for people who drop out because they were embarrassed by their expanding waistlines.

What can be done!

Make lifestyle changes like eat your meals with the television off and mobile kept aside, in this manner you can concentrate on the food and can make out yourself when you are full, please don’t overeat once you get the signal that you are full. Always listen to your body’s signs. I do understand probably still one may overdo when we find our favourite dish on the plate, in this case you may help yourself by controlling its portion size.

How shortly one gets hungry depends on how active you were, what the meal was comprised of, the quantity of food and the time of having the meal. Always notice your body’s cues and trust it, counting calories is not the best solution. Since a food is low in calories doesn’t indicate that it’s healthy or if it is high in calories, it doesn’t imply that its unhealthy. You cannot be healthy by eating low fat or low calorie but, have to maintain best of our health by nourishing our body with whole foods without counting their calories so that you are consistently energised to live life to the fullest. If you are amongst those who need to count the calories as you keep on craving for food, then you may go through the article on How to Manage Food Cravings

Let’s count our blessings instead of calories!

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9 Comments »

  1. I counted calories for years and got no where…. when I was diagnosed diabetic I was shown to count carbs and that has made all the difference. I eat whatever I want ( diabetic friendly of course) but just make sure it stays in my carb count that works for my body and keeps my glucose levels normal…

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  2. I try to maintain a healthy lifestyle in general with occasional sinful food indulgence. It’s great you mentioned about controlling portion sizes. That’s a great tip that most people tend to ignore specially when their favorite food is around 🙂

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  3. Yes, you are right, calorie counting is not at all necessary! I gave up on counting calories long ago. What I have endeavored to do instead is incorporate healthy eating as a lifestyle, staying away from what would be “empty” or harmful calories, and loading up on the more nutritional foods overall.

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