There has been such a mix-up with the idea of calories.
People have been programmed to believed that the simplicity of health and weight loss is “calories in vs calorie out.” There is the common misunderstanding that the less calories we eat, the more weight we will lose. Well, I hate to break it to you, it’s just not that simple.
Our bodies are insane. Think about it. They are moving and functioning and processing SOO MUCH.
So how can such a complicated body lose weight based on ONE stupid number programmed through an online calculator? Is this starting to sound more legitimate?
If you don’t believe me, here is the science on how it works.
There is so much that goes on in our bodies regarding hormones and body processes that I will definitely touch upon these topics again, but here’s the low down.
As babies, eating was an instinctual activity. Hunger is controlled by hormones and neural circuits in the brain. Nobody really had to teach you how to be hungry and how to be full, we just automatically knew. Now that we are trying to tamper with our natural shape and size, our bodies are rejecting this.
Our bodies thrive over proper fuel and hates starvation. Starvation comes in many different aspects. It isn’t just eating less, but starvation can be a MENTAL restriction (i.e. “I’m going on a diet on Monday.”) So, the simple stress of counting calories sends the body into a spiral of hormone imbalances.
This immense increase in our stress hormone cortisol (which can be healthy in small dosages- more on this later) will increase ghrelin (hormone that makes us hungry,) decrease leptin (hormone that decreases appetite) and slow down our metabolism.
Not only is calorie counting ineffective, but it’s tedious, stressful and straight up sucks. Who wants to spend their life obsessing over every ounce of food they eat instead of LIVING?
Ok, so enough with the science… what does that mean for us?
1)Stop counting calories.
2) Stop limiting food and listen to our own hunger cues.
3) Stop trying to control our natural body size.
4)Stop stressing out that you’re not perfect.
It is easier said than done, but we can make small changes by adding in delicious, nutrient dense foods while still enjoying all the foods that we love.
I will continue to talk about this idea of eating in a healthful, yet nonrestrictive way in upcoming posts and stop our diet-obsessed brains. So if the idea of stopping dieting is scary, don’t worry 🙂
I hope everyone enjoys their week and stops obsessing over calories!!