Calorie Counting – Does It Work?
Some might find it useful, while others think it’s a pain in the a*s. If you’re confused whether calorie counting is effective or not, trust us, you’re not the only one.
There are a lot of people that insist that counting calories is useful because they believe the science of losing weight sums up to the concept of calories in versus calories out. That makes a lot of sense, right?
Well, others believe that calorie counting is outdated, doesn’t work and often leaves people heavier than when they started. Both sides claim their ideas are supported by science, which only makes matters more confusing. So, what’s going on?
What’s a calorie?
Let’s get down to the bottom of it. A calorie is defined as the amount of heat energy needed to raise the temperature of one gram of water by 1°C. We use the energy from the calories we ingest for essential functions such as thinking, breathing, as well as day-to-day activities such as walking, talking and eating and everything else related to body-functioning. Any excess calories that are not consumed during the day, are eventually stored as fat deposits. Eating more than you manage to burn, is what causes weigh gain over time.
How does your body break down food into calories?
During the digestion process, your body breaks down the foods you ingest into nutrients (smaller units)
These subunits can either be used to build your own tissues or to provide your body with the energy it needs to meet its immediate needs.
The amount of energy (calories) your body gets from the subunits depends on where they come from:
- Carbohydrates: 4 calories / gram
- Protein: 4 calories / gram
- Fat: 9 calories / gram
- Alcohol: 7 calories / gram
The source of those calories. Why is it important?
As we said, during the digestion process, your body breaks down the food into nutrients. While some of the things you eat, such as vegetables and whole foods in general are very nutritious and provide your body enough protein, carbs and essential fats, there are also certain things you eat or drink that end up causing more harm than good – We call these “empty calories” because they generally lack important nutrients for your body, and just end up getting stored as fat deposits. That’s why having one too many drinks on a night out, or making too frequent stops at your favourite fast food can eventually have great impact over your health, wellbeing and especially the way you look.
Our Bet? Calorie Counting is Extremely Important!
We know, it’s very boring and sometimes requires a lot of work (weighting everything you eat, counting, researching every food) – but we promise, it’s all going to be worth it in the end. The simplest rule when it comes to losing weight, is that you must go on a calorie deficit. What does that mean? You need to eat less calories than what your body needs in order to function properly. This will cause the fat storages to get in line and be used as fuel.
That is why we recommend using our Diet and Workout Plan App, an easy way to keep track of your calories, each day. Using our meal planning mode, you can now exactly how many calories, proteins, carbs, fats and other nutritional values rests in every meal you’re having. Keeping track of your diet is going to make it easier for you to reach your fitness goals.