Those of you who read my emails know that I am not really into calorie counting.
And I stand by that…kind of!
But in my Top 50 Lessons from 12 years of coaching the BABEs post last week, lesson number 3 was…
Calories DO matter!
If you want to lose weight PART OF THE PUZZLE is you need to be in an energy deficit.
I.e. you need to burn more energy than you consume.
But the way we burn calories changes from person to person. Just look at what effects how we use the little critters…
Genes – a single variation in certain genes can leave you burning 160 cals less a day than your friend – ouch!
Previous weight gain/ diet history.
Hormones – women’s calorie burn rate can vary by up 100 cals per day.
(You burn more in the Luteal Phase of your cycle, which explains the extra hunger you feel days before you come on).
Sleep Quality and Quantity – a bad nights sleep can drop your calorie burn by up to 20%.
There’s also what you eat…
When you eat protein for example 20-30% of the calories get burnt on digestion alone compared to carbs that only burn 5-10%.
(That’s why we LOVE protein!)
In America the FDA allows for a 20% discrepancy in calculation, so when a “healthy” protein bar tells you it’s only got 99 calories, that’s probably either incorrect or irrelevant.
But, eating too many or too few calories can cause problems if you want to lose weight.
So, I do encourage the BABEs to record what they eat and drink.
We eat so mindlessly these days, just one here and the odd it won’t hurt there adds up!
A food diary makes you think twice.
In short, energy consumption does matter and, although they are not 100% correct, calories are the best guide we have for now, so yes if you want to lose weight then you do need to be mindful of how many you are eating!
But what you are eating matters too… more about that in the next post!
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