So do you need to count the calories in all your food every day for the rest of your lives?

Well as always, that depends on you.  Some people like to and need to count calories, it suits their way of thinking or they are just starting up on this journey so they are not aware of what foods are high calories and hence they are over or underestimating how much they are having.  In these cases counting calories for a period so you become aware of what foods are low and high can be helpful but once you understand that you often don’t need to continue counting calories.

It can be really helpful to look at the calories in foods on the nutrition table so you know what to avoid and where some of those hidden calories might be coming from.  For example, a lot of people drink 2-3 cups of coffee a day with milk. A quick google search will show you milk has about 150 calories per cup, so that is 300-450 calories a day just from the milk in their coffee.  If they just had the coffee without the milk they would possibly lose weight. So being aware of the calories in food can be very helpful and I will talk about how to read nutrition tables in the next video.

However, outside of this, I don’t ask people to count calories very often because it is time-consuming and anxiety producing.  And studies support that it often doesn’t make much difference on many people.  What matters is the overall quality of your food and the quantity but not the calorie counting.

So when you are going low fat or low carb, which I discuss later, they all work as long as you focus on whole and real foods, vegetables, and foods low in added sugar and low in refined grain and avoiding processed meats and oils.  And also some studies have asked people to not go hungry, meaning not restricting themselves so much they feel constantly hungry. Because we are aiming for long term changes here and you cannot use a diet that makes you feel hungry because you won’t stick to it.  So rather than think of this as being assigned to a diet, think of it as your new eating pattern. If you’re still hungry, add a little fat or carb back, until the point where you can say I think I could actually do this long-term.