Caloric Context Whenevercast Player
The Takeaway Points:
Calories are simply a unit of heat energy.
Calories do not make you fat.
Calories are energy…yes I am repeating myself.
Specific Energy is the scientific concept behind “empty calories”
If you’re eating too many empty calories, try eating more nutrient-dense calories rather than cutting back drastically on everything.
Motivation and willpower have less to do with managing food intake than education and knowledge.
We burn fuel just like cars do…Big car = more fuel. Drive faster = more fuel. Small car = less fuel. Drive slow = less fuel.
Learn the basics and the rest is easy.
I’m sick of people thinking they have to go on a diet of wood pulp and distilled water to get in shape. So I did this Whenevercast from the scientific standpoint so you can understand that there is no magic in calories. Calories are just a way to measure how much energy is contained in a given food. It’s funny that people will get upset that a manufacturer reduced the net weight of a food product but will become equally agitated that there are too many calories in the same product.
Since the true definition of calories is not often talked about, I talked about it. Eating calories is essential to continue living. The amount consumed is commensurate with your body mass (constant) and your activity level (variable). While your body mass may change over time, from day to day is can be regarded as constant. Eating enough calories to cover your daily expenditure is critical to maintaining good health and whatever body composition you choose.
If one does not meet the metabolic requirement for their body, they will be more susceptible to illness, fatigue and other symptoms of malnourishment. Be advised that when you determine your resting metabolic rate, that number is based on calories with a high energy density. You can determine your own rate by using online calculators like this one at www.health-calc.com. I guarantee a lot of you will be surprised by what you actually burn in a given day.
I also talk about specific energy which is the amount of energy contained in a food or liquid per unit of weight or volume. A food with a high specific energy, or energy density will have more nutrients per ounce than one with a low energy density. This is the concept behind “empty calories” but with all the mystical fluff removed so you can understand it. I use the example of a pound of steak having more nutrients than a pound of potato chips to illustrate the point.
Do not fall for the people who say that willpower is the key to losing fat or gaining muscle. It’s all about knowing what to do precisely and what the laws of nature will let you get away with. Everything your body does has a purpose. Hunger is a signal that you are low on nutrients. That signal goes out regardless of how many calories you’ve consumed. If you have cravings after eating, that’s a sign that you didn’t get enough nutrients. Fix it by eating energy-dense foods, not by starving yourself, gulping water or taking appetite suppressants. None of us are smarter than our bodies!
Hopefully you’ll walk away a little less anxious about eating after listening to this Whenevercast.