Monday, March 23, 2009

Stop “Just” Counting Calories

Everyone I meet… everyone has the same question… I don’t eat much and am always hungry and yet I am not losing weight. Is there something wrong with me?

Yes… because most of the people I talk to or ask me this question have one problem in common. They count calories, but forget one important thing. When you count your calories, you have to also take into consideration what I call the “fill up factor”. What is the fill up factor? The fill up factor is how much a certain food will fill you up because the simple science is, the fuller you feel and for longer, the less you will consume. The faster you get hungry, the more you will eat.

Take Grapes and raisins for instance. If you were to gobble down 20 grapes, how full would you feel? How about if you swallowed 20 raisins. Would you feel anything? Even though each raisin has the same amount of calories as a grape (since they are essentially the same item) yet the fill up factor is almost non existant in raisins. So which one would you rather eat to fill up?
This is why junk food is considered to be such a potent calorie puncher. Each medium sized bag of twisties, cheezels or whatever it is you fancy, has about 500 calories. But eating the whole bag does little or nothing to fill you up. Which means you are more likely to eat something again soon. And when you do, you ring the calorie regsiter again. So stop fooling yourself by skipping lunch just to have a glass of Milo and a bun and think you had nothing and then tell yourself that you can have a big dinner since your lunch was small. The combination of Milo and a bun (I am guessing the bun will either have cheese, Mayo or both) which will roughly be about 400 calories. Eating a normal meal is about 500 plus calories. So which one do you think is better? Eating a little bit more, but you can be sure it will last a while, or something small which is just slightly less in calories but will leave you craving for more within the hour.

So stop being the ding dong that goes to restaurants, orders something small but which is high in fat and calories, and convince youself that you will be fine, since you still feel hungry after the meal. And hey, why not have a bit of dessert, since after all my main course was so small. Eat normally, but choose wisely. Choose things that will fill you up and keep you full but lower on the calorie scale and avoid foods that breakdown fast or just don’t fill you up but high on calories.

As usual, i look forward to hearing your comments on this.


anfield devotee said...

Yeah, agrred. Just like dem fellas who sez they r gonna go to the pub & have ONE beer. What the fook's the point . . .

Rajan said...

AD: But we all know, it never ever ends with 1 beer. I have yet to go to a bar, have 1 beer and go home... even at my reduced alcohol tolerence these days.

Kerp (Ph.D) said...

oh crap...and i just had some cheesy wedges because i thought the 2 pieces of sandwiches for dinner were kinda light. very informative though. thanks brother.

Rajan said...

Kerp: No worries...I know lots of friends who eat super tiny sandwiches for lunch, but then they munch non stop in between and wonder why they are not seeing any weight loss. Not too late to change. :-)

nanda666 said...

Good stuff dude. One of my staff (Rather over weight Punjabi lady) was trying to lose weight and she said, "I ONLY have whole meal bread for Bfast....4 slices ONLY!!!) :)

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