Most people turn to math to maintain healthy body weight, i.e., how many calories they consume versus how many they lose. Although the food you eat does matter, focusing solely on the quantity rather than the quality of your calories may actually discourage weight loss.
In today’s blog, holistic health coach Kim Tuber Butters will share why calorie counting can be counterproductive and harmful.
You may think you can eat anything as long as you’re burning it off, but that interpretation is over-simplified and simply not true. When you eat empty or near-empty calories, you’re depriving your body of its nutrients to function properly.
You can’t deplete your nutrient reserves without replenishing them. Therefore, just looking at the numbers on the back of every food packaging isn’t the right way to go. No matter how many, your calories need to consist of nutrients and whole foods, not empty calories and processed foods.
Counting calories might help you lose weight rapidly, but it’s not exactly sustainable. You can’t keep on restricting yourselves to a certain number of calories—no matter how value-adding—a day. It’s not how nature intended, and it’s definitely not a way of life.
Calorie counting requires discipline and a certain level of control at all times. You can’t add energy before eating anything or decide against eating something because you’ve reached your daily limit. It’s not fun or sustainable.
The human body has over 600 muscles, which promote movement, blood circulation, breathing, and weightlifting. You’d be quite helpless without your muscles, so maintaining them must take priority.
Luckily, it’s quite easy to maintain muscle mass. All you need to do is sleep well, exercise every other day, and eat well. By counting calories, you wouldn’t exactly be achieving that last point.
You need to consume more value-adding calories per day to build muscles. When you eat fewer calories, your body turns to your existing muscles for energy. Look at it this way: you can’t expect a car to run on fumes any more than you can expect your body to do the same.
Counting calories is the exact opposite of a normal way of life. It’s a constant struggle to stay on the straight and narrow and can be incredibly stressful in the long run. When you stress out, your body releases cortisol, which increases your appetite for unhealthy food, among other things.
When your body releases cortisol, it becomes increasingly hard for you to resist empty calories and slow down the calorie-burning process. Counting calories can be stressful and, in turn, counterproductive, which is precisely why you shouldn’t do it at all.
Instead of counting calories or checking your weight after every gym run and meal, adopt a healthier approach to weight loss with our health and wellness coach. Join our six-month plan to lose weight and improve your metabolism and health through individualized movement protocols and food management information.
Reach out to the online health coach for more information about weight loss coaching.