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Do We Need to Start Counting Calories to Lose Weight?
- It takes 3,500 calories for you to gain one pound, which also means that if you burn 3,500 calories you’ll lose one pound.
- A good way to start a weight loss program is to reduce the amount of food eaten at any meal.
Just two decades ago the dieting fad of the times was calorie counting. Anyone who wanted to drop a few pounds would watch the foods they ate during the day and count the number of calories they were taking in. While that trend was largely replaced by the low-fat craze of the 1990’s and the low-carbohydrate diets more recently, some dieticians and nutritionists are recommending a return to the old days of calorie calculating.
The Basics of the Calorie Counting Idea
We need calories. The calorie is actually a measurement of how much energy is produced when our body eats a certain food. All of us need that energy to keep functioning properly, but if we take in more calories than what is needed for energy, the excess gets stored as fat in our bodies. After all, our bodies want to be prepared in case a steady supply of calories ceases.
It takes 3,500 calories for you to gain one pound, which also means that if you burn 3,500 calories you’ll lose one pound. Clearly, you can lose weight by knowing how many calories you are eating and how many you are burning.
The Best Ways to Count Calories
When you count calories, you don’t want to drastically cut your intake suddenly. That would not only be unhealthy for your body but would send your metabolism into a state of presumed starvation, meaning it would slow to a crawl. Instead, focus on cutting your calorie intake by about 5 to 10 percent. To do this, you need to pay attention to how many calories you are eating in a day.
Additionally, you can’t just go by the numbers. At 190 calories, a Starbucks café latte may not seem like a bad choice for breakfast, however, the beverage doesn’t contain most of what you need to get through the day in terms of micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) or macronutrients (proteins and carbohydrates). Instead, you want to look for good food choices to spend your calories. You want to walk the line between calorie reduction and balanced meals at all times. Not only will such an approach help you lose weight, but it will also help you establish healthier eating habits in the long run.
Other Ideas for Weight Loss
If you want to count calories, start by looking at the portion sizes you consume. In the United States, many people are unsure of a normal or regular portion size, so even when people do count calories, they may end up eating more than a regular portion size and that means they take in more calories than they should.
A good way to start a weight loss program is to reduce the amount of food eaten at any meal. If you go to a restaurant, for example, skip the appetizer and the dessert. You could also take home about half of your meal for leftovers the next day. Taking these actions can help you count calories and control your portions, which will help with your overall weight loss.
The information supplied in this article is not to be considered as medical advice and is for educational purposes only.
|Slimming Diets27 Nov 2008|