Calorie fixation is one of the biggest mistakes in the world of nutrition and diets. Raise your hand, who has not yet carefully checked how many calories are in a bag of chips or Neapolitan before you devour it like there’s no tomorrow: Every neighbor’s son has done this at least once in his life.

Calorie-based diets are a fairly common practice for mere mortals that can confuse us when it comes to figuring out whether a food is healthy or not.

The logic is overwhelming: if we eat too many calories, we gain weight. But is it really so? Our body works like a calculator with millimeter precision? There will be something not. The truth is that the calorie obsession hides a lot of big mistakes that are worth listing in terms of food.

What the hell is a calorie?

Let’s start with the basics of a calorie-based diet. We use them daily, but we rarely think about them. what the hell does the term “calorie” mean. Well, a calorie is a unit of measure for the energy value of a food, and it varies depending on the weight of the food. Thus: the greater the amount of food, the greater its calorie content or number of calories.

A little more technically, calories are required amount of heat raise the temperature of one gram of water by one degree Celsius (°C). However, in the nutritional world, we call a calorie (yes, capitalized) a kilocalorie: a unit of measurement that refers to 1,000 calories. Surely you have come across this word more than once in the abbreviation “kcal” on food labels.

Why am I telling you about this? Well, because calories greatly affect what we eat. For example, not all macronutrients provide the same energy content. Each gram of fat provides us with 9 kcal, while one gram of carbohydrates or protein has only 4 kcal. This reality meant that over the years we have become overly obsessed with fatblaming them for all our food ailments.

It was hate fatty

This hatred of fats, and hence the origin of high-calorie diets, motivated a few years ago the release of a huge amount of “light” products, “fat-free” and other edible monsters. Foods that, although containing little or no fat, continued to bring large amounts of sugar and salt to compensate: they were still not a healthy alternative. We’ve seen it in a plethora of dairy products like yogurt and milk itself, as well as baked goods and snack foods like chips.

Like all mods in hate fat carrion and have given way to other popular food industry-sponsored obsessions, such as the famous palm oil, sugar-free sweets, whole-wheat bread without whole-wheat flour, or the recent boom in sweetened protein desserts. All of these edible pantomimes have the same root, or most of it: the wrong obsession with calories.

The calorie content of food is not everything, the most important thing is the quality of its raw materials.. This phrase should be imprinted in our memory, as it sums up the essence of this text in a few words. This serves as a common mantra for nutritionists knowledgeable on the subject and comes to us to tell us that the energy content of food is not the most important thing. For example, avocados and nuts are quite high in calories. However, its composition, rich in healthy fats, compensates for the possible harm from excess calories.

A large number of scientific studies have shown that eating nuts helps improve cardiovascular health. For example, this study linked almond consumption to lower levels of LDL lipoproteins, commonly known as “bad cholesterol”, and maintenance of HDL lipoproteins, or “good cholesterol.” Avocado is not short: other scientific studies have shown that eating this fruit helps to lose weight in the context of a low-calorie diet.

The dangers of obsessive calorie diets

Ultimately, modern scientific evidence suggests that food goes way beyond calories. Therefore, those miracle diets that involve an unhealthy fixation on the number of calories bring only back pain. It is important to create long-term healthy habits that allow us to see much more than calories: include enough fruits and vegetables daily and to eat healthy food such as whole grains, legumes, fish, healthy fats such as extra virgin olive oil, as well as regular exercise and adequate rest. These and many other recommendations are perfectly reflected in the Harvard Healthy Eating Plate.

efecto yoyó, dietas milagro

Ultimately, weight loss is a completely individual matter, and the same recommendations may not apply to all people equally. We have already seen this on the Pronocal diet, where they promise to reduce a certain number of kilograms per month: real food stuff. Unfortunately, calorie-obsessed diets are all over the Internet.

Who is to blame for this? It’s hard to give an exact answer, but the food industry seems to have a lot to do with it. As we mentioned earlier, some food manufacturers have been responsible for promoting the idea that fat is the devil himself. However, consumers themselves have great purchasing power. Times have changed and now we are the ones who tell companies what we want and don’t want to consume. In this sense, we have tremendous power over what we eat: our purchasing choices matter much more than we think.

Source: Hiper Textual

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