Why You’re Still Gaining Weight When You’re Counting Calories, Says Expert — Eat This Not That


Have you ever ever dedicated to counting energy with the intention to drop some pounds, solely to develop pissed off and quit after a scarcity of outcomes? If this has occurred to you, you are not alone.

Counting energy leaves many individuals disheartened and confused, and when individuals do drop some pounds with this technique, it’s normal for the kilos to creep again after the counting is finished. And but, this technique of weight reduction continues to be very talked-about.

In an effort to resolve this thriller, we spoke with Cambridge geneticist and weight problems researcher Dr. Giles Yeo, creator of Why Energy Do not Depend: How We Acquired The Science of Weight Loss Unsuitable, concerning the science behind energy and why counting them would not at all times work for sustainable weight reduction.

In response to Dr. Yeo, the primary factor that individuals get fallacious is the idea that so long as we’re counting what number of energy we eat, it would not matter the place they arrive from. This assumption, nonetheless, shouldn’t be true.

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Not all energy are created equal

Many individuals consider they need to rely energy with the intention to successfully drop some pounds, however consultants are saying that it is rather more complicated than simply the quantity.

The truth is, based on Harvard Well being Publishing, there are three predominant elements in terms of how your physique processes the energy you eat: your metabolism, your intestine microbiome well being, and the kind of energy you are consuming.

That is precisely why Dr. Yeo believes that not all energy are created equal.

We do not truly eat energy, relatively, we eat meals from which our physique then extracts the energy,” says Yeo, “and your physique has to work kind of to extract energy relying on the kind of meals you eat.”

Dr. Yeo says that is referred to as “caloric availability” and is why it makes a distinction whether or not your energy come from steak, carrots, or a donut.


Caloric availability is the precise quantity of energy that your physique can extract from the meals you eat, in comparison with the whole energy a meals holds. So proteins, fats, and carbohydrates are all digested utilizing totally different quantities of power and due to this fact require totally different lengths of time.

“For each 100 energy of protein we eat, we’re solely in a position to make use of 70 energy as a result of it takes 30 energy of power to course of 100 energy of protein, which implies protein is 70% accessible,” says Yeo, “and this is likely one of the explanation why a calorie of protein makes you are feeling fuller than a calorie of fats or carbohydrate.”

To match, fats has a caloric availability near 100%, complicated carbohydrates (like complete grains) have about 90%, and a refined carb (like white bread) has 97%. This implies your physique is utilizing very small percentages of power to course of fat and carbs in comparison with protein.

That is all associated to the thermic impact of meals (TEF) that your physique experiences when digesting and metabolizing totally different macronutrients. The TEF for protein is far increased in comparison with carbohydrates or fat, inflicting your metabolism to work more durable as you digest it. This is the reason many medical consultants suggest including good sources of protein to at least one’s weight loss plan for weight reduction.

drop some pounds with out counting energy

As a result of not all energy are created equal, Dr. Yeo suggests leaving the calorie counting behind and as an alternative specializing in bettering the standard of your weight loss plan. He recommends growing the quantity of protein you eat from each animal and plant-based sources, growing your fiber consumption, and making an attempt to maintain added sugars to lower than 5% of your whole each day consumption.

If counting energy hasn’t labored for you, the excellent news is that there are many more healthy, extra sustainable methods to drop some pounds. For some who nonetheless like monitoring their meals, an alternate technique like counting macros may go, however you need to speak with a health care provider or dietitian earlier than beginning any new dietary plan.

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