In the lab, a calorie might be a calorie but it’s rarely the case in real life.
For example, think about 240 calories of Coke (600ml) compared to 240 calories of carrots.
One you can down in a few seconds…
The other will take you 2 ½ hours of continual chewing – yep that’s how long it takes to munch your way through 5 cups of carrots…if you could even eat that much!
It’s so much easier to overconsume some foods than others
This is the concept of calorie density.
For example, 1 tablespoon of oil is equivalent in calories to 2 cups of blueberries.
So when you look at these examples, they’re the same calories, but one has a greater volume of food.
That greater volume of food also contains fiber.
And fiber is interesting because it doesn’t get absorbed…so while a food may have a specific number of calories, the amount that gets into your bloodstream will always be less because…fiber.
Fiber also traps fat and sugar, so less of these (think calories) get absorbed as well
Plus most energy-dense (high calorie) foods are low in water, meaning they’re dehydrated.
Think about fresh apples versus dried apples.
The dried apples have the water taken out and so it’s easy to overeat.
Apple juice has the water left in but the fiber is taken out, and it’s easy to consume large volumes of calories very easily.
When we eat low density (low calorie) foods, that are high in fiber and high in nutrients we can eat more food, get more nutrients, more fiber, and feel full quicker, so we eat less food, and our weight is easier to manage.
The majority of high fiber, high nutrient, low density (low calorie) foods are plant foods like:
Legumes (beans & lentils)
The plant foods that contain healthy fats like avocado, olives, nuts & seeds, are high in fiber, high in nutrients, but high density – meaning they have a lot of calories.
This is important to note if you are on a weight release journey so you can moderate these foods.
Being able to enjoy large volumes of high-fiber, high nutrient plant foods means deprivation is a thing of the past.
You can feel confident that you are meeting your nutritional needs, releasing weight, helping to balance your hormones AND boosting your immunity when you seek to eat mostly plant foods.
So while I do NOT count calories…I know where they’re coming from.
If you’d like some help moving towards eating more plants for your health’s sake then let’s chat.
You’ll find a link to book a chat on this page Work with me