Why You Can Lose Weight by Simply Counting Calories Without Cutting Back on Anything
Many people are interested in the topic of losing weight and there are many approaches to this subject. The concept of “correct nutrition” is fairly blurred — diets oftentimes require you to refrain from a habitual lifestyle, cause stress, and don’t bring stable results. But if you know what principle most of them are based on, you can build up a more sensible nutrition plan.
5-Minute Crafts wants to tell you what the principle of losing weight with the help of counting calories is all about and why this method allows you to lose weight without giving anything up.
❗❗Please consult with a doctor before starting a new diet.❗❗
What the principle of counting calories is based on
The unit of measurement for the energy we get from food is a calorie. Just like fuel, this energy provides for all processes in our body, like fuel. The process of thinking, tapping a finger on a table, running long distances — all these activities require energy.
We get most calories from proteins, fats, and carbohydrates. After that, there are 2 ways to get energy: it will either be converted into physical activity or it will be stored in the body as fat.
This means that the principle of any diet for weight loss is based on how much you ate and how many calories you burned. Any approach to losing weight boils down to one principle: if you consume less energy than you expend, you will lose weight. If it’s the other way around, you will gain weight.
To use up all your calories and not store them in the form of fat, you can choose 2 ways:
- Reduce the number of calories you consume.
- Increase physical activity and thus burn more calories.
No matter what option you choose, it’s not necessary to refrain from eating your favorite products.
There are several ways to decrease the consumption of calories without counting them.
- Avoid high-calorie foods that are low in nutrients.
- Replace high-calorie foods with low-calorie foods.
- Reduce serving size.
Why it’s better to have a diet diary and count calories.
Any of the aforementioned options may not be very effective, because it is easy to miscalculate when measuring portions by eye.
Let’s consider the following example. Let’s say you decided to eat a portion of rice with meat and a vegetable mix for lunch.
- Calorie content of boiled rice — 97 cal for 3.5 oz.
- Calorie content of boiled beef — 126 cal for 3.5 oz.
- Calorie content of a pre-cooked vegetable mix — 65 cal for 3.5 oz.
- Calorie content of vegetable oil used for flavoring — 884 cal for 3.5 oz.
Now let’s count and compare the calorie content of 2 portions that weigh 14 oz.
One portion contains 6.7 oz of rice, 5.2 oz of meat, 1.7 oz of vegetables, and 0.5 oz of vegetable oil.
The second one contains 5.2 oz of rice, 3.3 oz of meat, 5.2 oz of vegetables, and 0.17 oz of vegetable oil.
These 2 portions hardly differ by look but let’s find out what calorie content they have.
- 6.7 oz of rice — 185.7 cal, 5.2 oz of beef — 187.2 cal, 1.7 oz of vegetables — 31.6 cal, 0.5 oz of vegetable oil — 126.3 cal. There are a total of 530.8 cal in the first portion.
- 5.2 oz of rice — 144.1, 3.3 oz of beef — 118.8, 5.2 oz of vegetables — 96.6, 0.2 oz of oil- 50.5 cal. There are a total of 410 cal in the second portion.
We got 2 visually similar portions the difference in the calorie content of which is 120.8 cal.
What the advantage of counting calories is.
When you decide to stick to a certain diet, you face restrictions on the choice of products that you can consume. Sometimes saying no to certain foods can be quite an uphill psychological task.
When counting calories, you can basically eat any product, the main thing to remember is to stay within the daily calorie intake. Psychologically, this method is easier, because you are not focused on prohibitions, but are driven by other motivations.
Like what? Let’s say you are facing the choice of what to eat: a plate of salad with tomatoes and cucumbers or candy. Let’s count.
Let’s say there is a plate with a salad with tomatoes and cucumbers in front of you. The total weight of the dish is 10.58 oz. Let’s count the calorie content of the dish provided there is an equal amount of tomatoes and cucumbers.
- Calorie content of tomatoes — 22 cal for 3.5 oz, so 5.2 oz contains 33 cal.
- Calorie content of cucumbers — 15 cal for 3.5 oz, so 5.2 oz contains 22.5 cal.
It means the total calorie content of this salad is 55.5 cal per portion.
Now let’s count the calorie content of one milk chocolate candy that weighs 1.05 oz.
- Calorie content of milk chocolate candy — 535 cal for 3.5 oz.
It means one candy that weighs 1.05 oz contains 160.5 cal.
Practice shows that when a person is hungry and their task is not to eat more calories per day than planned, between a large portion of vegetable salad and candy, they will choose a salad, knowing that candy won’t satisfy their hunger.
But the bonus is that you won’t exceed the daily norm of intake of calories even if you choose candy.
How to learn how many calories to consume a day to lose weight.
Start a calorie diary. There are many handy smartphone apps to help you do this.
In order to find out how many calories to consume a day to lose weight, count how many calories you consume now without restricting yourself and without overeating. Take these measurements within several days.
When reducing a normal diet from 500 to 1,000 calories a day, as a rule, you will start losing about 1.1 pounds.
Keep in mind that it’s important to pay attention to the distribution between proteins, fats, and carbohydrates that you’ll have to stick to to make the process of losing weight effectively and without any harm to your health.