Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Calorie counting


For variety, I'm going to switch to counting calories. I tend to think that any efforts towards weight-loss are helpful; whether it's following a specific diet or counting calories or whatever. No method is perfect but they are all useful tools. I'm not very good at being consistent so I'll just keep changing the plan whenever I get bored with the last one. I'm the same with exercise; I'll be really into using the rowing machine or dancing or whatever then after about three months be bored with it. And that is ok, I think, as long as I then move on to something else.

Calorie counting is a very imprecise tool. My understanding is that they work out how many calories are in something by burning it to ash and seeing how much energy it gives off in the process. But this would mean that wood or coal would be rated as high calorie - it doesn't take into account how the human body digests the substance. A beaver might be able to live on wood, but I think a human would have trouble extracting enough calories to live on, even if we disregard the whole issue of nutrients. You would starve to death while chowing down on thousands of calories of tree trunk a day.

But I don't plan on eating wood, and although I don't believe in a straight calories-in vs calories-out equation I think it gives a good enough approximation for the purposes of trying to manage weight. And it gives me something to track, which helps keep me mindful about what I am eating.

Calorie counting forces you to reduce fat and starchy carbs and processed foods, and eat more veges, just because of the calorie load of different foods. Tomato soup for lunch!


  1. I think for me, calorie counting is more useful as just being more conscious of what I'm eating.... If I'm not counting calories, I tend to just eat whatever. I hate counting though. LOL

  2. Calorie counting is a research supported way of losing weight so I think it can be a very good thing to do. I like the term "calorie awareness" because I am aware of calories but do not count every day.