Calories Count...or do they?

Community Leader
Registered: 04-05-2002
Calories Count...or do they?
4
Tue, 03-12-2013 - 8:04am

This was an interesting article. I like that they cover both sides of the argument. I've always thought the "calories in, calories out" was overly simplified and you can't compare 200 calories of spinach to 200 calories of soda for weight loss. In a lab, 3500 calories of fat equals a pound but our bodies have a variety of energy sources, even muscle, plus it can go into calorie saving mode if you starve it.  And, different food fuels our body differently (there is a reason marathoners use sugars and not butter to refuel!) so a calorie isn't a calorie. But, calories do count; they're just not equivalent.  

http://www.npr.org/blogs/thesalt/2013/02/20/172403779/calorie-counts-fatally-flawed-or-our-best-defense-against-pudge?ft=1






Community Leader
Registered: 04-05-2002
Wed, 03-13-2013 - 1:38pm

Yes, I remember that. Calories definitely do count when it comes to weight loss but I don't think it's as simple as 3500 calories=1 pound. It's contrary to conventional wisdom but I think one person eating 1500 calories of pure junk won't have the same body or weight as someone eating 1500 healthful calories.  From personal experience (which I realize counts for nothing but personal experience), I've found that when I'm eating good healthy food, I eat more calories but weight less than when I eat high processed foods.  I first discovered it when I did the Perricone diet--far more food/calories than I normally eat, I was full most of the time and I lost weight compared to when I was doing low fat diets. This is one reason I stay away from diet sodas--they may be zero calories but the effect on the body isn't zero!






Community Leader
Registered: 04-07-2008
Wed, 03-13-2013 - 7:53am

This is very interesting. Remember a while back some professor did an experiment in which he ate nothing but junk and lost a bunch of weight and then it started a big to-do over the calorie count? I would think that common sense would tell someone that a brownie is not going to be the same health benefit as a couple of apples but apparently it seems difficult for some to understand not all calories are equal. 

Karla
Community Leader
WALKING
EXERCISE and HEALTHY LIVING

Community Leader
Registered: 09-25-2003
Tue, 03-12-2013 - 9:47am
I can't link to the article from my iPad...I still have a lot to learn. However, I was even shocked to hear an endocrinologist tell some docs that it's all about number of calories and not what the calories come from. I know he is wrong, but you do NOT correct a specialist! The speed at which the food turns into sugars is very important as to how the body uses/stores those sugars. I will read the article when I get on my pc.
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-15-2004
Tue, 03-12-2013 - 9:27am

I agree... it's definitely oversimplified.  The best weapon is education.