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Read what fitchef.co.za has to say ..Counting calories is like filling your car with fuel and when the petrol attend asks “Petrol or Diesel?” you respond “It doesn’t matter, because all fuel is just energy” WHAT???!!! Of course it matters what fuel you put into your car, petrol will seriously damage your diesel engine. Bread, sugar and refined carbs are petrol for your diesel engine…

REALLY!!! Start reading labels and ask what that strange chemical name actually is, why is there flavouring in your orange juice and what type of carbs are in this meal?

Motivation

THE LESSON

It’s a pity that we’ve become so addicted to worrying about calories (or Kilojoules)… despite the fact that after years of calorie counting it hasn’t really solved weight loss problems, improved your sports performance or helped with health issues. If someone asks me about calories my first thought is “ah, this person doesn’t understand weight management yet”… lets chat. Basically in general calorie counting is pointless, if you follow some rules: You should NOT be living on sugar, bread, pap, cereal and refined carbs. Eat more veg, good meats and whole food from nature.

So, would you like to forget about calories for the rest of your life? Lets unpack calories and chat about a few guidelines.

Calories and insulin

Calories are an exceptionally unreliable way of telling you how you will respond to the food. 100 calories of sugar is not the same as 100 calories of vegetables. The sugar spikes your insulin causing you to store fat and the vegetables balance your insulin, allowing your body to burn fat. The sugar leaves you hungry and makes you want more and more and more, the vegetables are full of fibre and leave you feeling full and light.

What is a calorie?

ACTUALLY…

The definition of a Calorie:
“The approximate amount of energy needed to raise the temperature of one gram of water by one degree Celsius”… huh?? Yep exactly, ok we understand the it’s a measure of how much energy is used, and we mostly understand that the harder you exercise the more energy you use but since when is food just about energy, it’s about nutrition and what it does to your insulin/leptin levels/gut/health/mental focus etc.

What is a kilojoule?
1 calorie = 4 kilojoules (it’s basically miles verses kilometres). Actually that’s technically wrong, when most people mention a calorie they actually mean Kilo Calorie (Kcal) , so 1 Kcal = 4 Kilojoules. 

The source of your calories

As mentioned it is critical to know the source of your calories… read the ingredients label. Is the carb and calories coming from sugar, grains, nuts, oil or is it from veg? How high is the fibre? Is the protein from meat, veg, beans, legumes, protein powder, is it a quality source of protein e.g. WILD salmon, is a great protein but FARMED salmon can be very bad for you because they are fed unnatural food sources like grain, whenever would a fish live on GMO grains in a natural environment. What is that preservative or stabiliser, could it be that you are not allergic to banana but rather the preservative in the food? Sugar (in any form) so often makes you bloated and farty, maybe it’s not the gluten causing your problems but rather the added sugar in the sauce.

Burning calories Our heart rate watches try to work out how many calories you burn based on heart rate and age. But there are so many other factors. There is talk that some swimmers eat 10 000 calories a day because they train in cold water all day and their bodies need to warm up continually. So calories is really just a guideline. BTW, eating a diet rich in vegetables would mean that you would only eat around 1000 KCal per day anyways (based on 3 meals and 2 smoothies).

Portion control Be aware of portion control, generally we do eat too much, thinking that more is better. Be aware of your portion size and being reasonable when it comes to your protein, fats, carbs or starchy food (Rice, potatoes, fruit, beans, legumes, bread, sweet food) and don’t have starchy/high-carb meals in the evenings, unless you are on a specific diet. 

DECISION TIME

#TakeActionToday
If your staple diet is cereal, sugary foods, pap, bread then it’s important to change to foods that come straight from nature, really limit or remove refined food (i.e. with ingredient lists that look like a chemistry experiment). To improve results it does take planning! Either cook many meals ahead of time or always cook way more than you need to and freeze or refrigerate additional portions (or of course buy your meals upfront to avoid having to revert back to old habits and undoing your results). That may sound like hard work, but nothing tastes as good as FEELING GOOD feels.
#TheHardTruth
You will never have more time, or a quieter day. Life will always be busy. But you can plan ahead and order or prepare your meals in bulk so you don’t run out. Plan ahead, plan ahead plan head!!

Talk to us about setting up a debit order so we just deliver enough meals, snacks and smoothies so that you don’t go back to old habits and you can maintain your health… email lifestyle@fitchef.co.za

#TIPS IF YOU ARE ON A CHALLENGE
Remember that if you have oats breakfasts as part of your challenge, then just add a bit of hot water after microwaving to make it really creamy. Also note that we generally only provide you with 9 oats meals, because we move you onto vegetarian breakfasts. We know this sounds strange but you will feel great and supercharge your health and weight loss results.

For more on Fitchef and its healthy food and smoothie packages click here