Why Counting Calories Isn't the Only Answer

When I was first attempted to lose weight and burn fat I immediately began with counting my calories. Looking  up "How to lose weight" online and the advice mainly says it's calories in versus calories out, a simple, easy to understand method. Burn more calories than you eat and bam…you will lose weight.  Unfortunately it is NOT that simple. Assuming that you can alter the amount of calories you consume, and then your body will respond with linear weight loss is well...one-dimensional.

Concentrating solely on the calories excludes two CRITICAL components that can have an effect on many areas related to our metabolism and weight - our personality and hormones.  One food that may cause inflammation for one person may not for another. Food that makes you feel full and satisfied, may lead to cravings for another friend. Every person is different and unique to their own wants, needs and desires. Our bodies, metabolisms, DNA, family histories, personal preferences, financial situation, lifestyle, family, etc ALL play a role in reaching our goals. This is why there is no ONE diet that works for everyone, because diets do not account for YOU, the one who it SHOULD be tailored to!

Calories also do not take into consideration your hormones and your hormones are something you want to be paying attention to!  You can burn calories and "lose weight" but how do you know if the weight you are losing is fat or muscle loss? How about keeping your hunger or cravings in check? Have you thought about energy levels?  The answer, caring about your hormones!

Instead of focusing on the calories you are eating, focus on the energy exchange and the information your body is receiving from the food. Is what you are eating giving you energy for your day or leaving you dozing in your afternoon meeting? Focusing on calories assumes eating a 150 calorie donut would have the same effect as eating 150 calories worth of almonds. One will satisfy your hunger and keep your energy thriving through the afternoon, the other could very well leave you reaching for another snack shortly after.

"Food is information. It gives instructions that turn on/off genes that regulate hormones, and regulate immune system function." Dr. Mark Hyman

Fueling your body with information (Food) that keeps your hunger at bay, your cravings nonexistent, and your energy high is better information than any "low calorie" alternative will give you. Not only will it make losing the weight EASIER because it is tough to over eat whole foods but you’re helping your hormones function optimally too.  It is quality versus quantity.

 

Here are THREE questions you can ask yourself to ensure you are making the best food choices for YOU!

  1. What information will this food give my body? Will I have more or less energy after eating this? Will this keep me full for a while? Does this food typically trigger cravings later in the day?
  2. Does my body tend to experience a reaction after eating this food?For example, gas, bloating, a runny nose or watery eyes, a headache, or digestive issues. These are all things to consider.
  3.  Am I truly hungry? Is what I want to eat extremely specific, more connected to a craving, or would I be willing to a nutritious meal because my body is signaling for true hunger.

Xo,

Shannon

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