What is a Calorie?
- As it applies to food and your body, it’s the amount of energy that a particular food will produce in the human body when consumed and metabolized. On a social scale this isn't accounted for because calories and their importance have become so filled with incorrect or damaging implications about diet, nutrition and health; focusing on calories alone ignores a vast majority of nutritional complexity.
Calorie counting simply can't be done accurately.
- As much as we'd like to trust our calorie "guessimation" that's all they are, guesses. According to the FDA, a calorie value is only out of compliance if the actual number of calories the food has is 20% higher than what’s on the label (calories, fat, sodium, etc.). Basically stating there's a 20% margin of error.
Calories get absolutely too much attention
- When was the last time you checked your nutrient intake as opposed to your calorie intake? The chances you said often or ever are in the lower percentage. We rarely pay attention to our nutrients and chuck everything up to calories, however counting calories is just that, counting calories. It’s not looking at the true nutritional value of the foods you’re eating. You don't know a foods ability to nourish your body simply by looking at it’s calorie count.
All calories are not created equal
- This if nothing else is a huge takeaway! The biggest setback with calorie counting applies to the ability to count 300 calories of organic vegetables equal to 300 calories of your local fast-food burger based solely on number. Different foods are metabolized differently, absorbed differently, converted into fat or energy differently and impact your internal health differently.
The Weigh In: Stop counting calories & listen to your body. Hunger is an alert for nutrients not calories. Stay aware of your portions. Portion control does more for your weight loss and gains than calorie counting. Simply put, the quality of calories, meaning the types of food we eat, has an important effect on whether we gain or lose body fat.
Eat well & Eat to live.