You may have noticed that at Bespoke we prioritize quality over quantity. When we eat nutrient-dense foods and omit energy-dense ones (i.e. processed foods, refined grains, sugar and other empty calories), our bodies will naturally regulate our portions without the need to whip out our calculators.
Not only is calorie counting a flawed exercise, but it’s also not sustainable. First off, calories oversimplify how our bodies ingest food. There are many different metabolic signals that influence how we digest, absorb and eliminate the foods we eat. Calories are just one of these measurements, and solely focusing on this number is an oversimplification of our bodies and our metabolism. To add fuel to this, many nutrition labels are just wrong. We’re not even counting with the right numbers, friends! Plus, how can you know how many calories are in foods when we dine out? It’s just not a realistic measure.
Calories also don’t take nutrition into account. 200 calories of carrots is very different from the equivalent amount of candy. When you consume a nutritionally-balanced diet, you will feel more satisfied by your meals, reduce cravings, have more energy and hopefully get adequate micro and macro nutrients that every cell in your body needs to function.
When you are consistently in a caloric deficit, your metabolism can slow down. This means you will need less calories than you previously did, which increases your chance of gaining weight back and makes it harder to lose when you do. Plus, restrictive eating can actually lead to increased caloric intake. Studies show that calorie counters consistently underestimated size and the amount of calories per person. Plus, long-term restrictive eating can lead to binges, a negative relationship to food and overall feelings of dissatisfaction.
Lastly, and arguably most importantly, counting calories is no fun. Relegating the food you eat to a set of numbers literally strips the joy and energy from what we eat, making meal times more transactional and less enjoyable.