You’ve probably heard the old sayings, “A calorie is a calorie”, or “Weight loss is just calories in vs calories out.”
But is this really true? Are all calories the same?
As a certified nutrition counselor here in Nashville, I call bullshit on that.
Nashville Nutritionist Says…
Let’s take two 1200-calories diets:
- One woman eats 1200 calories per day split into 5 small meals of high-quality proteins, healthy fats, and vegetables.
- The second woman doesn’t eat all day, then eats 1200 calories of donuts before going to bed.
Which person do you think will have a healthy, lean body?
And which do you think will pack on body fat, get diabetes, be exhausted all the time, and have severe nutrient deficiencies?
All food is not the same. (duh)
Healthy food creates healthy bodies. Junk food creates junk bodies. We can’t make our own food like plants can, so the old saying “You are what you eat” is exactly right for us humans.
Calories DO matter, don’t get me wrong.
The total amount of food you consume is a very important consideration for whether you’ll gain or lose weight.
But even though the amount of calories you’re eating is very important…
…the QUALITY of those calories is even more important.
For example, if you’re looking for weight loss, eating more high-quality, minimally processed, and nutrient-dense foods), and limiting lower-quality foods (processed foods, sugar, and high-calories low-nutrient starches) is the way to go.
And when you eat mostly healthier foods, you get a bonus:
Consuming higher-quality foods and fewer lower-quality foods helps guide you to consuming fewer calories overall.
When you eat a volleyball-sized amount of salad, it’s super-high in nutrients but only 60 calories. A volleyball-sized plate of pasta, is…well, a lot more than that…
Best Foods For Weight Loss
Harvard Medical School, who is always up-to-date on the current research on health, agrees.
They analyzed studies looking at quality of foods vs. the quantity. And what they showed is:
The quality of what you eat does matter -— especially when it comes to weight loss.
A study covering 120,000 men and women showed:
- Foods that caused the most weight gain were associated with potato chips, sugar-sweetened beverages, and processed meats.
- The best weight loss foods were nuts, seeds, vegetables, whole grains, fruits, yogurt, and lean meats. (These are the kind of ingredients in our Done-For-You Meal Plans)
What This Means For Your Weight Loss Program
So what can you take away from this message?
- The quality of the foods you’re eating is just as important to your results as the amount of calories you’re eating.
- Calories DO matter, so portions still count. But healthier food is typically so much lower in calories that you don’t have to think about it so much.
- If you’re eating better quality foods, there is a good chance you’re going to eat fewer calories as well.
And if you want help putting together healthy meal plans AND STICKING TO IT, just drop us a note. Our personal trainers and nutrition coaches are standing by ready for you!