24 Nov Calories: The Good the Bad and the Ugly

A popular subject these days is whether or not there are “good” and “bad” calories.

The answer to that question is yes… and no. See, all calories are born equal, but they are not born the same.

On one hand, all calories count equally towards our energy balance. 200 calories of pure sugar and 200 calories of a chicken thigh are the same, as far as energy is concerned.

On the other hand, the nutritional value of calories isn’t always the same. 200 calories of pure sugar will only give you energy, while 200 calories from a chicken thigh will come alongside proteins, B vitamins, Iron and other trace elements.

So, in addition to HOW MANY calories we eat, we should be aware of WHAT KIND of calories we eat.

For example, a diet that includes nothing but salads can be considered low in energy and high in certain vitamins. As a whole however, it is nutritionally inadequate.

What does “Nutritionally inadequate” mean?

Our bodies require certain nutrients to work properly. It’s not just fuel, we need proteins, vitamins, minerals, trace elements and fluids.

We’d need an entire book to list all of the functions of these nutrients. For the time being, we’ll focus on the fact that they are necessary for our bodies to work properly and that deficiencies in them can result in health problems.

Simply put, a nutritionally inadequate diet is a diet that does not give you all these necessary nutrients.

So, it’s important to make your calories count.

Don’t get stuck on a specific food just because you heard it’s healthy. Sure, include it in your diet, but, at the same time, make sure you maintain a variety in the foods you eat and that your diet remains balanced.

What is a balanced diet?