Not All Calories Count the Same

Calories in Food

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Counting Calories

 For years I have said that all calories are not the same for weight loss and been told I was wrong.  Raw food calories do not digest the same way that cooked food calories do.  Nor is processed food digested like natural foods.  In other words, if you eat an apple with 70 calories and a candy bar with 70 calories and fats and sugars like corn syrup, the breakdown and storing or use of those calories is different.  But now, finally, ‘the powers that be’ are saying, “Not all calories are created equally,” U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack.  Thank you!

Points are like Calories

Weight Watchers has actually had it right, in many ways, for a long time. By giving low points or no points to fruits and vegetables, the diligent dieter has always gravitated to these healthy, high-fiber, oxidant-rich foods. When you want to eat more food, you choose those lowest in point count on your plan. Since these are full of fiber, the dieter feels full and satisfied. Soon, the healthy habit sticks, and fatty junk food becomes a thing of the past.

In my experience two things have sabotaged this great plan: 1) Weight Watcher’s insistence on getting calcium from dairy foods, and 2) the leaders. The leaders, always trying to make their clients happy, would search for low point junk food to show the dieters one-point, sugar-laden, nutrient-void snacks. The dieters loved it because they could “legally” cheat and stay on their diets. Unfortunately, these little indiscretions depleted their nutrients, kept them hungry, and kept their sweet tooth alive. It actually made their dieting process harder, not easier.

High Protein Diets

It has been shown that high calorie, high protein diets can cause a person to lose weight fast. This alone proves that all calories are not the same for dieters. But, is this a healthy way to lose weight? Since fiber is absent from the diet and our bodies strain to process the abundance of protein eaten, logic tells us it is very unhealthy for us.

When Looking Good Counts

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Fast Weight Loss

There have been plenty of books written and videos made illustrating fast weight loss using a raw, vegan diet. When I needed to lose 10 pounds, I went on a raw food diet for a week and lost 10 pounds—in one week! I ate as much raw food as I wanted with no added sweeteners or oils, one serving of dried fruit a day, and no more than 30 raw nuts a day. So, I know this diet really works. (NOTE: Do not go from an all cooked food eating style to an all raw eating style because your body will have difficulty handling the change.)

However, you don’t even have to go all raw. You should strive to eat at least 5 raw foods per day, replacing cooked food you would have eaten, including dark leafy greens and orange foods. Increase that amount gradually to 8 raw foods per day—again, replacing cooked foods. This alone will decrease your weight, and you will feel much better, more energetic.

Fast Food

In a fast food world, raw is the ultimate fast food. Grab an apple or some almonds and be on your way. Developing good eating habits and keeping weight off is essential to good health. What good is a skinny, sick body? “At the end of the day, we’re seeing that the calorie-in, calorie-out approach was the wrong message,” said Heather Schwartz a dietitian with Stanford Hospital and Clinics.

Quick Weight Loss Story

Would you go vegan or raw to lose weight?

Cast your vote for Dieting

Stop Counting Calories

 Instead of following the recommendations of eating five fruits and vegetables a day, step it up a notch.  Eat five RAW fruits and vegetables a day, preferably organic and locally grown.  Each day, I count my raw foods to be sure I eat at least five a day—every day!  Begin each meal with raw foods.

When you start to eliminate processed foods and choose high-fiber, nutrient-rich foods, you will see a difference in your health, have more energy, and lose weight.  As you decrease the cooked foods, become more physically active, and increase your healthy raw foods, the pounds will begin to melt away and stay away.  You will be hooked on this new, easy way to be thin and healthy.

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Comments 3 comments

Goyakla profile image

Goyakla 5 years ago from United Kingdom

This is another high quality hub which tells the truth in a no nonsense way and calling on your own experience gives integrity to what you say. I am glad I came across your hubs.


Beverly Stevens profile image

Beverly Stevens 5 years ago from College Station Author

Thank you very much.


GreenTe profile image

GreenTe 5 years ago from Portugal

Hi Beverly, Loved this article!

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