Food shouldn’t be about math. It should be about pleasure and nourishment. More calories doesn’t always lead to weight gain.
Diets low in calories are very hard to stay on. People in all walks of life struggle with weight control. Obesity and type 2 diabetes are two of the major health problems of our time.
Could the? of all Americans either overweight or obese all be gluttonous and lazy? No. Is something inherently wrong with the calorie model? Yes.
Don’t ask “how many calories,” ask “what does this food do for me.” Don’t live in a fairytale, pretending that calories don’t count. Its just that our health is more complex than the amount of calories something contains.
Technically, a calorie is the amount of energy required to raise the temperature of 1 gram of water 1 degree celsius. We don’t use calories like this.
How many calories we actually absorb depends on several factors like the type of food, preparation methods, gut bacteria, and the energy used for digestion.
All calories are not created equally.
Have you ever noticed that when you eat steak you’re full for more hours than if you eat pizza. This is because proteins take longer to digest than carbohydrates regardless of calorie count. Proteins burn 15-20% more calories in the digestion, absorption, and disposal of nutrients.
The type of food changes how many calories we absorb. Studies have shown that the calorie content listed for almonds is 32% higher than what we actually absorb. So we only use a small amount of the calories given on the label.
Limiting calories often means that we limit healthy fats simply because they have more calories, without taking into consideration the benefits.
Fat doesn’t make you fat. (good fats: grassfed butter, ghee, nuts, seeds, coconut oil, olive oil… )
Your body craves and needs fat. Lack of dietary fat/cholesterol can result in a number of issues like a lack of energy, dysregulated hormones, depression, and anxiety.
When we give our body the types of food we are meant to eat, it does the rest.
100 calories of fresh fruits and vegetables and 100 calories of processed sugar are very different. Artificial sugar and ingredients don’t send the same fullness signals to the brain as whole foods.
This makes it easy to overeat without realizing it. Eating nutritious whole foods makes you unlikely to overeat.
Fullness is subtle. It takes 20 minutes for your gut to tell your brain you are full. It involves a vague sense that you don’t want anything else to eat, and it can be ignored accidentally.
Have you ever eaten more calories than you were allotted during the day? Then you feel stressed out and depressed? If so, STOP.
Stress is directly linked to weight gain. Eat the unhealthy things you love on occasion and fully enjoy them!
Just make them the exception not the norm. Enjoy your meals, without the stress.
Many emotions can make people crave food when their bodies really don’t need it. Break these habits by dealing with the slipups while they happen or right after.
You can stop an episode in its tracks by becoming aware of it and not beating yourself up for it.
Don’t count calories for a healthier relationship with food. Don’t turn the wonderful act of eating into a math equation.
Focus on the quality of your calories, not the quantity.
If you want to learn more about healthy living visit the Opportuniteas blog