The old school weight loss industry has always told us that counting calories equals weight loss. This is philosophically and scientifically wrong.
Weight loss companies that practice calorie counting may be more interested in your customer loyalty than your independence and freedom.
Here's a more forward-thinking mindset: whatever weight loss strategies you adopt, should be nutritional habits you would reasonably sustain for life. Making yourself go crazy over tracking your food is a pretty unnatural and unsustainable way to eat.
MOST importantly, calorie-counting is counterproductive and does not lead to long-term weight loss.
Here are the top 5 reasons why calorie counting does NOT work:
1. Deprivation causes cravings.
Food is meant to nourish your body. Deprivation from food triggers cravings. For example, depriving yourself of carbs causes your blood sugar to dip, which causes your body to trigger a sugar craving. You will then crave carbs, but in the form of simple sugars like candy and chocolate.
2. Counting makes you neurotic.
Have you ever met a healthy person who promotes their secret to fitness as counting calories? It’s just not sustainable and it's a misdirected way to reach a goal. It would be equivalent to writing down every dollar and cent you spend in order to save money.
3. Counting calories slows down your metabolism.
Going lower than your "resting metabolic rate" puts your metabolism in a slower-running, starvation mode. Most calorie-restricting diets force you to go below your minimum daily caloric intake required for your body to simply function.
4. Nutrients and quality of ingredients are ignored.
Calorie-counting does not leave room for considering the quality of the ingredients or the nutrients you consume. It boils food down to numbers, which is a misrepresentation of what you’re putting into your body.
5. It fights your body's natural rhythm.
Your body is designed to be an incredibly smart and intuitive machine that can tell you when you’re hungry or satisfied through your appetite, which is signaled by your brain. Counting calories forces you to ignore those natural abilities your body has to tell you what it needs for nourishment.
Instead of counting calories, I recommend listening to your body and eating until you are 80% full. Eat slowly enough that you give your stomach the chance to signal to your brain that you've reached this ideal point of your meal for your energy and metabolism.
In my health coaching practice, I don't believe in rules, diets, or calorie counting. Weight loss solutions should be designed to get you OUT of weight loss mode, NOT in. Click here to learn more.