Monday, March 5, 2012

All Calories Are Not Created Equal

Do you count your calories?

It’s a good idea to learn approximately how many calories are in the foods we eat but I believe that counting calories is not such a great idea. First, most people underestimate the amount of calories in
their food and tend to not be able to accurately determine what a serving size is. In the end, although they are counting calories with all the best intentions, the numbers could be way off. 

Another issue that I have with people wanting to count calories is that I don’t think it is sustainable over a long period of time. I have met very few people that could do this for more than a few days. People tend to either quit after a couple days or get obsessed with calories when in reality they should be caring more about what kinds of food they are eating and NOT the number calories in the food. All calories are NOT created equal.

Which foods you choose to get your calories from will determine how full you get and also whether the calories will be used quickly by the body or stored as fat. When you eat empty calories (calories with little or no nutrients), your body usually begins to crave the missing nutrients. This often leads to overeating. Protein and foods high in fiber will keep you satiated longer. Foods that are mostly sugar lead to an increase in insulin and fat to be deposited into your body. 400 calories from donuts are not the same as 400 calories from a turkey and veggie omelette. As I said before, all calories are not created equal.

Sugar covered deep fried donuts.
2 egg omelette with turkey and veggies.

 Text and Photos by Maria


  1. It should be noted, if counting calories seems like a good idea to you, try it! If it helps you choose better foods, great! For most people it doesn't help them in the long run but there are always exceptions! I just don't find it a sustainable way to help someone eat better over a long period of time. It drives most people crazy and even causes some to just give up! We are all different though so different things work for different people. If counting calories is a short term project to learn about how many calories you are actually consuming in a day, I say try it! Count those calories. BUT if you want to learn how to eat better/change your habits and make lifetime changes....counting calories isn't going to do much for you after a few days.Instead of calorie counting, I help my clients learn what their body needs and what appropriate portions and choices are for them based on their health/lifestyle/activity level.

  2. Very well said! I thoroughly enjoyed this post (and not because those are my doughnuts).