You can’t outrun a poor diet: Calories Matter

About 70% of calorie consumption is accounted for by metabolism though the absolute number varies little for people of different metabolic rates. So, if you’re an average male whose calorie burn is 2,000 a day (can be 1,500 – 2,500 depending on height), about 1,400 are consumed just being you (brain, breathing etc). For females whose calorie burn rate is 1,600, that would be 1,200 calories. Another 400 (320 for females) or so are consumed by digestion (can be 100-800). And then there’s movin’ and shakin’ aka exercise.

The shape of things to come (already here).Standing instead of sitting can burn an extra 50 calories an hour (10-80). So if you stand instead of sit at the desk you’ll burn maybe an extra 300 calories a day. Jogging for an hour can burn 700 calories. And running burns about twice te calories per minute of walking. Simply fidgeting will raise your metabolic rate and make a difference. If you have a physically demanding day, like cleaning, digging, building etc, you’ll be burning more calories than a desk-worker, but that doesn’t mean a bit of a workout isn’t going to help the parts of your body the daily routine doesn’t reach, like your tummy! And it’s good to breathe.

The fitter you are the easier it is to burn calories and stay fit. Muscle burns calories twice as well as fat, so more muscle means you’ll stay fitter. Regular activity makes it easier for your body to raise its metabolic rate, so regular activity makes it easier to stay fit. And sadly, the older you get the more difficult it becomes as your metabolic rate naturally declines, so you just have to work a bit harder.

But, the most difficult issue is usually what goes in to the tube at the mouth end. A few weeks ago a bout of stomach flu was going around which stopped us eating for a day. This was an opportunity to cut back, and we did a bit of calorie counting. It was an uncomfortable revelation, especially because sugar is sweet and butter is yummy. It became apparent that sugar is the enemy and fat the arch nemesis. Sugar flirts and fat beckons, so you just have to say no…

Eat regularly (three meals a day) but avoid snacking on cookies which will blow your budget. And try not to eat late before sleeping.

Some of my favourites which sit on your waist are bread and pasta, but potatoes (without butter!) are better. Nuts and seeds seem ok, but are very calorie dense. Vegetables win hands down.

Here’s a list of some of the usual suspects:

Ml, g

cal

Beer

318

154

Red wine bottle

750

650

Red wine glass

125

110

Potato

100

75

Potato

300

225

Pasta dry

100

350

Pasta cooked

100

130

Rice dry

100

330

Egg

60

90

Goose egg

170

320

Oil, butter etc

10

90

Tofu

100

150

Bread

100

240

Bread

25

60

Cookie

15

70

Cookie

100

460

Chocolate

28

148

Chocolate

100

525

Cheese

100

414

Nuts

100

650

Seeds

100

550

Muesli

100

340

Banana

90 (1)

100

Apple

140 (1)

70

Orange

130 (1)

60

Tomatoes

122 (1)

22

Cabbage

1000 (1)

250

Carrot

100 (4)

40

Metabolism and weight loss: How you burn calories – Mayo Clinic

Calorie burner: How much better is standing up than sitting? – BBC

How to Calculate Your Exercise Calories – About Health

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One thought on “You can’t outrun a poor diet: Calories Matter”

  1. A useful article:
    What Happens When Fat Is Burned? : https://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/what-happens-when-fat-is-burned.html
    Its conclusions:
    Calories count! The signal that triggers your body to release adipose from fat cells is an energy deficit… you have to burn more than you eat. More info: burning fat without burning muscle article.
    Cut calories conservatively. Starving yourself may cause quick weightloss at first, but never works long term because it actually decreases the activity of fat burning enzymes that release fat from the cells. to avoid this “starvation mode” use exercise to BURN THE FAT, not very low calorie crash diets.
    Get control of your weight now. If you are gaining weight, and especially if your weight is climbing upwards out of control, make a decision to STOP RIGHT NOW. Your fat cells might be multiplying, making it more difficult to burn fat in the future. NOW is the time!
    If you’ve already lost weight, you must be forever diligent. Your fat cells are not gone, they have merely “shrunk” or “emptied out.” Fitness is not a 12 week program, its a lifestyle. To stay lean you have to eat clean and stay active
    Genetics are only a minor factor. You may not have control over how many fat cells you were born with, but you do control the major factors that determine how much fat you store: lifestyle, exercise, nutrition, mental attitude.

    Genetics are not an excuse. The past is not an excuse. Your present condition is not an excuse. You can either make excuses or get results, but you can’t do both.

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