Health and Fitness

What is a Calorie?

happyThe definition of one calorie, What is a Calorie?  officially, is defined as the amount of heat required to raise the temperature of one liter of water one degree.

Thus, a calorie is actually not a tangible item, but rather a unit of measure. drow names dnd Calories actually measure the energy contained in a given food or beverage item that we consume.

Calories can be found in one of four basic food components: carbohydrates, fats, alcohol, and proteins. Proteins and carbohydrates contain half the calories that fat holds.

What Can Calories Do?

Consuming calories is essentially comparable to filling the gas tank up in your car. The food that we eat as well as the beverages that we drink basically becomes the fuel that is responsible for allowing our bodies to run.

Despite all of the popular fad diets that suggest that carbs or fat are more important, the truth is that calories really do count for something.

If you overload your gas tank then you are essentially going to find yourself gaining weight over time.

How do Calories Turn Into Fat?

We all have a basic need for calories, known as a basal calorie need. These are the calories that our bodies require at a minimum every day in order to perform the minimal functions including

making sure that our organs continue to run. When you consume more than that basic caloric need,

then your body is not going to have any choice but to find a place for those excess calories.

It puts them into food storage in the form of fat grams, essentially. In other words, when calories are simply sitting around and doing nothing, they turn into fat.

For every 3,500 calories that you consume in excess of your basic need, you are going to gain approximately 1 lbs in fat.

How Many Calories are Needed?

The recommendation by the USDA is for 2,000 calories per day for the average American person that is trying to maintain their weight.

If you are trying to lose weight, then the recommended caloric intake is actually only 1,500 calories.

You should get an accurate representation of your Basal Metabolic Rate or BMR so you can figure out how many calories you actually need to eat every day to be healthy.

This formula combines your weight and your activity level with other factors to make sure that you are getting the right amount of calories every day and not too many. It is important for you to learn how to count

your calories so that you can lose weight or maintain your weight. When you use a calorie guide or a nutrition guide,

What is a Calorie?
What is a Calorie?

you will be better able to track your calorie intake so that you can find ways to

cut down on your calories and lose some weight in a healthy and natural manner.

Learn to Count Calories to Lose Weight

You will need to cut or burn about 3,500 calories to lose approximately one pound. By using a calorie content database such as

Calorie Count Plus, you can track your caloric intake and find ways to cut back. This is best achieved by cutting some calories from your regular diet with simple changes, such as choosing reduced-calorie beverages and burning additional calories with exercise.

Reducing your caloric intake by and/or burning a total of 500 calories a day will lead to an average of one pound lost each week, a healthy and sustainable rate at which to lose weight.

How Low is Too Low?

You may assume the more weight you need to lose, the more calories you should immediately cut. It’s actually the other way around: The more you weigh now, the more calories you can — and should — eat.

As you lose weight, you should cut more calories. By keeping an accurate food and beverage diary and regularly re-calculating your BMR, you will be able to adjust your intake as needed.

While you may find a number of 1,200 calorie diets around, it’s important to remember that cutting your calories too low may actually lead to weight plateaus.

(There is a “starvation mode” phenomenon where your body actually withholds the calories you take in for later use because it “thinks” you’re starving.)

Following a diet of just 1,200 calories a day would almost certainly mean you would not meet your daily nutrition requirements.

Plus, if you do try to make such a severe calorie restriction, you’re likely to feel hungry most of the time.
While you may lose a lot of weight, very quickly, by cutting so many calories, it’s nearly impossible to sustain this type of diet for very long.

Never attempt to follow a diet of less than 1,200 calories a day unless you are instructed to do so under a doctor’s supervision.

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