Lose Weight Calorie Counting: Why You Should Count Calories

In this article I’m going to break down why calorie counting is the most successful way to lose weight. I’ll also be covering all you need to know about calorie counting ranges and other strategies to fit calorie counting into your lifestyle.

A woman calorie counting for her meal. Calorie counting is the best way to lose weight.
Calorie counting

In todays society where every body is surrounded by instant gratification such as junk food consisting of specific doses of salt, sugar and fat to make the foods as palatable as possible. The general consensus is to just eat clean and eat when you’re hungry. But in western society you can’t trust your sense of “being hungry”

When your diet consists of a majority of sugary proccesed cereals, McDonalds, biscuits and other junk food its hard to trust your bodies intuition.

Calorie Counting Isn’t A Diet – Prioritise Calorie Counting If You Want To Lose Weight Quickly And Sustainably

In society there seems to be a stigma towards calorie counting. Yet to solve a modern day problem you need a modern day solution. There’s nothing wrong with calorie counting. In fact it can dramatically improve your body composition.

If you’re unhealthy and you need to drastically lose weight because of the negatives that come with it for example type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease, a lesser quality of life to say a few. This means that you are in debt metabolically speaking.

If your’e overweight and start eating in a calorie deficit and start to lose weight at an appropriate rate your health will considerably get better.

If you look to my fat loss article all the information you need to know is there. This will teach you how to set up your calories. For losing weight and fat. Your insulin sensitivity will get get better as you get to a healthy body fat percentage. Particularly below 15% ( meaning your body can use carbohydrates, fat and protein more efficiently.)

The Art Of Calorie Counting

Download an app called my fitness pal alternatively you can use the website calorie king to make a meal plan.

A lot of people go wrong with calorie counting but you don’t have to be perfect. One of the most important tips I can give is initially you should weigh everything for at least a few weeks. After that if your weight is going down then you can be a bit less strict towards your calorie counting (although I recommend especially when losing weight its best to weigh all of your food to ensure steady progress).

Results Drive Motivation

Once you start to lose weight you’ll be excited about the results. Think about it like this when was the last time you achieved something and wasn’t happy about it. Many studies show that it takes 66 days to form a habit. After a couple of months you’ll be extremely happy with your results and you would have made a new habit which enables you to get healthier and achieve results. win-win.

The Dip

When you come to a point where you struggle to make any significant weight loss which for most people is 1-2 pounds a week you’ll need to be objective with yourself and either reduce your calories or add cardio. Or a mixture of both.

Nuances Of Calorie Counting

Highly fattening foods like peanut butter, olive oil and cheese need to be counted to a T. The reason being if you forget or guess these types of calories you could be eating double the amount. For example a block of cheese that you estimate might actually have 2x as much calories as you thought was in it. This does happen from time to time. Be responsible for your own decisions and ask yourself “is this food choice conducive to my goals”

Eating Out

Going out for tasty meals and for a couple of drinks with a friend is a fun thing to do and is part of healthy relationships and a healthy life. If your going out for a big meal I recommend doing something called intermittent fasting. Specifiically the lean gains approach popularised by Martin Berkhan at lean gains.com his website is linked below. It’s full of fantastic information.

I personally don’t use this on weekdays but for example if on a weekend I’ve made plans to go out for a meal and a couple of alcoholic drinks. It’s a good idea to get a few feedings of protein and then use the rest of your calories for your meal. This means that you can still lose weight while reaching your goals and fitting your diet around your life rather than your life around your diet. Basically Martins approach advocates you to fast (not eat hence the word breakfast because you break the fast when you eat.) for 16 hours and then have a feeding window of 8 hours.

Calorie Counting Essentials

To calorie count effectively you need a good food scale I recommend a scale made by the brand salter.

http://www.salterhousewares.co.uk/kitchen/kitchen-scales.html

Prioritise Your Calories Around Protein

The beauty about calorie counting is that you just need to adjust your calories towards your goals. Rather than have strict guidelines compared to diets like ketogenic diet, vegan diet, paleo, low carb. You just need to either pick a goal of losing fat, maintenance, or a surplus to build muscle. No single food is off-limits like in the diets just listed. Once you have your calories adjusted to your goals you must prioritise protein. One gram of protein per pound of bodyweight is the sweet spot for bulking and cutting. When cutting though you can potentially go higher in protein to keep you satiated.

Try Not To Drink Your Calories – Or At Least Count The Calories You Drink If You Want To Lose Weight

Drinking your calories will indefinitely make losing weight substantially more difficult. This is because your already eating less than your body is consuming. From time to time you will get hungry. To prevent this you can leave out fizzy drinks and replace them with whole foods or even diet drinks. There is a bit of controversy around diet drinks. Aspartame generally speaking gets a bad reputation. But when in reality drinking it in moderation ( I’m talking one or two cans a week) is perfectly fine. Most of your fluid intake should be coming from water. If you don’t like tap water I recommend getting a water filter.

Whole Foods Are Your Best Choice – Calorie Counting Is The Easiest Way To Lose Weight

fruits and vegetables for calorie counting is the best way to lose weight.

By getting 80-90% of your diet from whole foods such as lean protein like turkey mince, chicken, lean beef mince and a mixture of fruits, vegetables, complex carbs like wholegrain rice, and potatoes, sweet and standard potatoes are fine although standard potatoes do have a higher glycemic index than sweet potatoes. This means that they get converted into glucose (which is your bodies primary source of energy) quicker than sweet potatoes and lend themselves better to a pre-workout meal then complex carbohydrates do. Although they are both good pre-workout meal options.

Set A Range – Calorie Counting Is The Easiest Way To Lose Weight

One thing that dramatically helped me when I started to track my food intake was setting a range. For example if you needed to eat 2000 calories to lose weight you could set a range of 1900 to 2100. By doing this you increase your adherence rather than having to get your calories “perfect” and increase your chance of success.

The Bottom Line On Why Calorie Counting Is The Easiest Way To Lose Weight

Counting your calories isn’t rocket science. We can all do it. It just takes some practice to get good at it like many things in life.

To be successful:

1.calculate your calories.Depending on your goals.

2.Weigh yourself everyday and then take an average weigh in for the week which can be determined by adding your weigh ins and then dividing them by 7

3. Set a calorie range.

4. Eat mainly whole foods.

5.Keep going till you reach your goals. Repeat

Further Reading

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Burn-Fat-Feed-Muscle-Transform/dp/B00H4P9OR4

Burn the fat feed the muscle is a fantastic read for really understanding nutrition and how it relates to body composition.

https://henrypaget.com/all-articles/

Hopefully now you can understand why calorie counting is extremely important if you want to lose weight.

If you have any questions or need any further help send me an email at contact@henrypaget.com

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