Individuals might think that they understand everything there is to know about calories. Several individuals have been counting calories, cutting out calories, and even adding up calories for the majority of their lives. However, as it relates to weight loss, there is really still a lot of uncertainty associated with counting calories. As it turns out, several of the assumptions on the topic are actually myths. Following are seven of the major calorie counting myths.
Every Calorie Is Created Equally
A lot of individuals believe that as long as they remain on a specific amount of calories each day, they are healthy eaters. This myth could interfere with the individual consuming a nutritious and balanced diet. There is no way that individuals can compare 100 calories of soda to 100 calories of salmon. The reason being is that salmon is packed with nutrients that are beneficial, such as protein and omega-3 fatty acids.
They work extremely hard in order to feed the body. This is one of the reasons that the American Heart Association encourages individuals to eat salmon twice per week. As it relates to soda, it is the contrast, the calories in sodas are constantly working against the body. They are not just lacking in nutrients, but are also loaded with sugar. This is the reason that consuming them has been connected to an enhanced risk of developing type II diabetes and obesity. It is a complete error to think that all calories are the same.
Celery Has Negative Calories
According to the United States Department of Agriculture, celery has roughly 9 calories in each stalk, so it is apparent how this myth started. It would be easy to envision that just chewing on some celery sticks, would reverse a sufficient amount of calories. Leading to the negative calorie territory. Lettuce, radishes, cucumbers, and other water-loaded vegetables are also considered to be negative calorie foods. However, similar to celery, this is nothing short of a myth. There are simply no foods that carry negative calories.
Calorie Labels Are 100 Percent Accurate
As it relates to calorie information on nutrition labels, what you see is not necessarily what you get. Manufacturers have some leeway as it relates to this. As a matter of fact, by law, food producers could be as much as twenty percent off the mark as it relates to the calorie count. This means that a product being consumed by an individual which they believe to have 200 calories might in actual fact have as much as 240 calories. A study on obesity assessed the accuracy of nutrition labels and discovered that convenience meals that have been prepackaged had eight percent more calories. This can definitely add up.
If 3,500 Calories Are Cut, 1 Pound Will Be Loss
As it relates to the science of calories, this is a gross oversimplification of the process, and really not how weight loss operates in real life. Stress, sleep or lack thereof, genetics, and overall body size could obscure this broad rule. As the body starts to lose weight, the number of calories required to maintain that weight decreases. The 3,500 calories equivalent to one pound formula does not take this into consideration.
Neither does it account for other factors such as poor compliance, exercise habits, altering diets, and gender. A reduction of ten calories each day could result in one pound loss; however, this could take a few years to reach. For dieters this rule is not as appealing as the 3,500 calories one, however, it is much more accurate.
The Body Absorbs Each Calorie In A Food
There is a difference between the number of calories a person’s body will absorb from food and the number of calories that specific food consists of. Depending on the makeup of the gut microbiome, the number of calories a person could assimilate could vary. Scientists have uncovered that calorie counts could vary between cooked and raw foods. What is more, is that there is also the fiber effect. Due to the fact that the body does not absorb fiber, which is actually the indigestible part of a plant, the quantity a food consists of could impact the calories absorbed.
The Readout Of Calories Burned On Fitness Trackers Is Accurate
Several calories counters live and die by their calories burned readouts on their preferred device or exercise equipment. It is quite common for individuals to eat an additional snack or order dessert depending on the value they see on their device. However, it was discovered that fitness trackers are typically off by as much as twenty-seven percent. This is a significant amount. If an individual is overestimating their calories burned by so much, it could make it quite difficult to lose weight; what is more, it could result in weight gain.
Individuals do not recognize that when they exercise, they unknowingly reduce other energy spent throughout the day. They might take the stairs less often, stand less or fidget less. The body will consistently make adjustments and compensate in order to maintain the balance of energy below the level of consciousness. This is nothing that can be manually controlled. Thanks to these devices, individuals get an inflated idea of the calories burned, after making an assumption on the number of calories they consumed.
For Losing Weight, Counting Calories Is Essential
Of course, counting calories could be a useful guide for losing weight. However, there is no need to feel as you cannot lose weight if you cannot count all your calories. It was discovered that other dietary modifications, for example, eliminating processed food, could as effective for losing weight. A study revealed that even though no one counted calories in determining which is better between low carbohydrates or low-fat diets. Each group lost practically identical weight, and the only thing they had in common was a diet of whole foods and not processed. Therefore, regardless of if you count or not, the best option is the one that works for you.