Stop counting calories!

Stop counting calories!

When I say “stop counting calories” and encourage you to be health-conscious rather than weight-conscious, I speak from experience.

There was a time I wanted to make sure I’d stay thin; I studied how many calories there were in every type of food, I measured and weighed my portions and knew exactly how many calories I was consuming. Not only was it not a very enjoyable way of eating food but I was also eating a lot of foods that didn't do me any good; the only upside was how well they fitted into my daily allowance of calories. But I was definitely not getting all the nutrients I needed.

Yes, I was thin, but I don’t think I was healthy. I was young then but had I kept going down that track, I'm sure I’d now be dealing with some health issues related to eating too much fat, too much salt, too much sugar and too little fibre and not nearly all of the necessary vitamins and minerals a well-functioning body needs.

Nowadays, I never count calories. I count nutrients and eat when I'm hungry, as much as I want. I have cake every day and go for seconds. I don’t care because all the food I eat is healthy, I don’t have to “cheat” or “treat” myself, I never feel guilty about eating and I probably frequently go over the “recommended daily amount of calories for women.”

I wouldn't know because…I don’t keep track of the calories!

If your food is nutritious enough, in time, your body starts telling you when enough is enough and you’ll naturally start eating the right amount of calories at any given day. Also, a calorie isn't the same as a calorie, it matters more where they come from rather than their quantity, whether our body makes good use of them or puts them in “storage”, making us gain extra weight.

Commonly, the less nutritious the food, the more our bodies want us to eat. They’re simply trying to fill up on nutrients to keep going. But obviously, if there’s always a lack of one or more nutrient, it’ll wear us down and our bodies develop health problems; small to begin with but more serious as we get older.

So, put that calorie-counter away and forget about your weight; become health-conscious instead!