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When I started blogging I had a vision of what I wanted to do and the path I intended to pursue. I stipulated my own guidelines creating a prerequisite of an inclusion and exclusion criteria and one of those things is calorie control. A few of my readers have emailed me inquiring about the “number of calories per serving” or “how to incorporate some of my meals in a calorie restrictive diet”. I knew at some time I would be presented with these questions, after all we’ve been taught to be conscious of calories in order to be healthy.
Portions and servings
The truth is I don’t count calories and have no intention to commence counting any time soon. I urge you to adapt the same stance, but I will go into much more detail throughout the body of the text. The real reason why I don’t count calories is because calories are not created equally and eating nutritional dense food is far more important to me.
I also eat according to what my body needs at the time. For instance, on a cardio workout day I may increase my carb intake for maximum energy or more protein on a strength resistance day. My portions and nutritional needs fluctuate depending on my lifestyle rather than some contemporary diet.
In other words, I listen to my body rather than what society dictates or deems as the correct amount of food to consume. I’m also slightly hesitant about declaring serving sizes on my website, again this due in part to my own lifestyle and finding it difficult to define what the average portion/serving is. What you may classify as a serving for two I may deem this as a meal for one.
Dietary fads and calorie counting
I’m sure we have all heard of different type of diets which guarantee weightloss. Granted a restrictive diet will cause weightloss but it comes at the expense of omitting nutritional dense food. Not only that, these short term results are doing more harm than good to the body.
Furthermore, this doesn’t teach a person how to lead a permanent healthy lifestyle and the value of wholesome food, which explains why most people on diets are more inclined to diet hop out of frustration.
Our bodies needs food to sustain its self, not just any type of food but food with the correct amount of protein, carbs and fats – free from chemicals, GMO, anti inflammatory and non insulin spike food.
Leading a lifestyle which centres around calorie counting is arduous, frustrating and often never works in the long term because of the many constraints and the inability to understand what the body requires, which leaves room for disappointment. Keep this in mind in future that less is not the equivalent to more.
What are calories?
I’m glad you asked, calories are essential just a unit of energy. Whenever someone says “how many calories are in that?’ or “that’s too many calories”. They are referring to the amount of energy which they get from food.
The best analogy I can give you, is to imagine a sports car, the car won’t drive without fuel in it. Patrol/gas is what gives the car fuel and the ability to manoeuvre smoothly.
We procure calories from the carbohydrates, fats and protein that we eat. We need a healthy balance of carbs, fats and protein that is free from additives, preservatives, preferably from fresh produce, that is organic, grass fed meat.
Eating a balanced serving of carbs, protein and fats made from scratch increases the chances of long term weightloss and/or overall good health.
Calories are not created equally
Yup, that’s right! I know, shock! horror! but I thought?……..let me stop you there. I already know what you’re going to say ” isn’t that low fat apple pie from the supermarket healthier than an apple?’ Sorry to be the bearer of bad news but that’s not true.
A low fat apple pie from the store might have a low fat percentage but it is loaded with additives to appeal to our taste buds and convince you that eating it is a step in the right direction.
Sadly, that couldn’t be any further from the truth. These low fat, low calorie, manufactured goods play mayhem with the body causing blood sugar spikes, inflammation, emptiness, constant hunger, cravings, impulsive eating and even excessive weight gain. Can you manage eating 10 low fat apple pies? YIKES!
On the other hand, eating an apple that is full of nutrition, non toxic and not to mention filling would be better option.
Ultimately it’s more advisable to consider the quality of the calories, where they derive from and their enhanced value on the human body rather than what’s written on the pre-packed processed food.
Remember these manufacturers have an agenda and need to make money, even if it’s off the backs of those gullible enough to believe a box of low carb cookies are healthier than some carrots.
I’m going to really drive this message home; about the quality of calories, just for the sake of clarity, poor quality food is exactly that poor quality. A plate of processed noodles is not on par with a freshly made salad bowl. There’s absolutely no competition or comparison, at all and never will.
Poor quality food has a different effect on the body to good quality food. It causes an adverse reaction, where the blood sugar levels become unstable, insatiable hunger and can even contribute to diabetes, obesity, heart disease and non-alcoholic fatty liver.
On the other hand, wholesome, unrefined food yields long lasting energy, stability, lessens the likelihood of feeling hungry and supports the body’s personal development.
What are your thoughts, do you believe calories are equal? Do you have any experiences with calories controlled diets?