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Let's talk about calories.


Most of those who lose weight today carefully calculate the calorie content of the food they eat, but they do it completely in vain, because the calorie content of the eaten by and large does not affect anything. Are you surprised?
It's not about the amount of food itself, but about its quality composition, in the proportions of proteins, fats and carbohydrates. Mainly carbohydrates. They get into the body, converted into glucose, which, on the one hand, gives us energy, and on the other - increases the level of sugar in the blood and pushes to the formation of fatty layer.
I believe that the theory of weight loss, based on a low-calorie diet, is undoubtedly the biggest scientific misconception in the field of dietetics. This simplified hypothesis has no real scientific basis. Let's remember history.
In 1930, two American doctors from the University of Michigan, Newborg and Johnston, in one of their publications put forward the idea that "obesity is most likely the result of consuming calorie-rich foods." Since, at that time, there was no theory scientifically explaining the reasons for the appearance of excess weight, as soon as their work was published, it was immediately accepted as an undeniable scientific dogma. And even despite the many contradictions and discoveries of recent years, their theory is included in the curriculum of medical institutions in many Western countries and continues to occupy a leading place.
What is the calories that everyone talks about?
The number of calories of the product is very simple: they burn it in a so-called "caloric bomb" and measure the amount of heat released in calories. The most interesting thing is that you can put a stool in the caloric bomb, and it will equally give you the required number of kilocalories. From this, however, it does not follow that the stool is a valuable food product, and the human body does not look like a similar bomb. It does not burn everything that there do not throw. Some products are partially digested, and some are not digested at all.
A few decades ago, Academician A.M. Ugolyev published his famous theory of nutrition. The main thesis of this theory sounded like this: the caloric content of the food ration should correspond to the energy costs of the organism.
But time passed, and made some amendments to this provision. It turned out that the body of each person can differently absorb the calories from the food, for example:
• Significant content of fiber (including soluble), can significantly reduce absorption, and therefore, the intake of excess calories in the body.
• Some micronutrients contained in food affect the absorption of substances in the small intestine. For example, the scientific works of L. Fakambi showed that mature cheeses, characterized by a high content of calcium, detain part of the fats and prevent their absorption by the intestine. Accordingly, this part of fats, and hence calories, does not enter the body, but leaves with feces.
• Fats of different nature suck in different ways. For example, saturated animal fats are absorbed and converted into human fat much more easily than polyunsaturated vegetable fats, which practically do not participate in the formation of human fat.
• Intestinal absorption of carbohydrates, fats and proteins varies somewhat depending on the time of day, the time of the year, and the chemical composition of other products that they meet, entering the intestine.
Thus, the main thesis of the caloric nutrition theory now looks like this: "The caloric content of each body, assimilated in different ways, must correspond to the energy costs of the organism."
Unfortunately, the caloric theory completely mastered the minds of modern nutritionists, since it allowed us to estimate the energy intensity of food in a convenient numerical form. The fact that these figures can vary greatly among different people at the moment, few people are interested.
So that's it. According to this theory, if a person's energy needs are 2500 calories a day, and he consumes only 2000 food together with food, then to cover a deficit of 500 calories, the human body will borrow this amount from the stored fat. As a result, weight loss occurs. And another situation. If a person consumes 3,500 calories each day instead of 2,500 calories, then in this case, a surplus of 1000 calories will automatically be stored in reserve fat. As you can see, arithmetic here is simple. It is because of the simplicity and availability of any calculation of the diet that the theory of calories is still used in practice by many nutritionists.
But in this case I would like to ask a question, but how could prisoners survive in concentration camps that received from 200 to 400 calories a day with daily exhausting labor? If this theory is correct, then, according to her, they should have died within a few days, having spent all their reserves of deferred fat. Yes, they were very thin, but they continued to live. And the inhabitants of the besieged Leningrad? How many days they kept on a scanty ration?
Similarly, you can ask yourself why some food lovers who absorb daily from 4000 to 5000 calories do not suffer from obesity. Moreover, among them there are many lean people. People even say about them: "Do not feed the horse." According to this theory, these "gluttons" in a few years should have gained weight of four hundred to five hundred kilograms. And how to explain that some people, by reducing the amount of food consumed, and with it calories, continue to gain weight?
Suppose that at an everyday rate of 2500 calories, a person consumes such a quantity of food for a long time. But if suddenly this number of calories decreases to 2000, then the body begins to compensate for the missing amount due to reserve fat. There is a loss of weight. This is logical.
But after that, the body, under the action of the survival instinct, quickly, within a few days, will adapt to this level of incoming calories. Not included are visible, at first glance, protective functions and body reserves. The temperature of the body may decrease slightly, the heart will beat less often, the movements will become a little slower and more economical. And the person will live peacefully for only 2000 calories. In this case, weight loss, of course, stops. But that is not all.
The fact is that our body, as a result of evolution, has acquired the experience of survival, which is aimed at creating reserves. If they continue to give only 2000 calories, they will simply reduce their energy needs, say, up to 1700 calories, and the difference in 300 calories will still be put aside. And here there is a paradoxical thing, although a person eats less (and his body, accordingly, receives fewer calories), he begins to slowly improve. After some decline, recovery should be followed, and even exceeding the initial weight. And, at all this process will occur differently. That's why you can not offer a low-calorie diet, not being interested in its composition and not knowing the features of the reactions to it of the organism of a particular person.
To begin with, the process of eating any food can be conditionally divided into three components:
1. Mechanical processing (grinding).
2. Digestion.
3. Suction.
And there is not a single person who would have all these stages the same.
It depends on many factors, but the point is that one person will eventually absorb 99% of the nutrients, while the other will not have more than 30%. In one person, these substances will go to meet energy needs, and the other will be stored in the form of fats. It's not for nothing that today many progressive nutritionists say: "In order to lose weight, you need not just to reduce the caloric content of the diet, but also to change its composition in a special way." This is the basis of the modern approach to the treatment of obesity.
If excessive consumption of calories, indeed, would be a universal cause of excess weight, the simplest and natural way of treating this disease would be to simply reduce the amount of food consumed. It would be enough to calculate the number of calories that a given person usually eats, and offer him a diet in which these calories contain ten percent less. And he must lose weight !?
But not everything is so simple. A simple decrease in calories does not manage to defeat obesity. This is not possible even when the calorie deficit is very significant. Although many of my colleagues still try to count calories, despite the fact that it is quite tiring even for a specialist dietician, and the results of such calculations are very approximate. Even products with the same name can have different calories.
Weight loss with a simple hypocaloric diet is observed only at the very beginning of its use. After some time, long before reaching the desired weight, the process stops, even despite further, very strict, compliance with the diet. This situation is familiar to many of those who at least once tried to lose weight.
But if for you all the same it is easier or more habitual to count calories then I want to warn you against one mistake.
Some Russian and foreign nutritionists advise to switch to food in 2000 kcal. I do not advise doing this in any case.
First, losing weight, even if it will, is incredibly long-stretched for many years.
Secondly, in the case of a reduced metabolism, these 2000 kcal may well not lead to weight loss in general. Recommendations restricting the dietary intake of up to 2000 kcal should be considered an excessive reinsurance, only detrimental to the process of losing weight.
And, thirdly, most importantly - according to the American researchers, with a caloric intake of 2000 kcal, weight loss occurs not at the expense of fat, but due to the loss of tissues without fat (ie due to muscles). This causes fatigue, hair loss, skin changes, depression.
In other words, a small decrease in caloric content proceeds much more painfully than a decrease in caloric content to 1000 kcal, and, in addition, all the lost body weight is quickly restored when switching to normal nutrition.
People who follow the physical form, usually calculate the content of calories in their diet. From the point of view of modern dietetics, and medical science in general, it is fundamentally wrong approach - any diet should be based on the balance of proteins, fats and carbohydrates. Consumption of fats should be minimized, and for the rest, for each individual, the emphasis should be on nutrition.
That is, the modern approach to the problem of rational nutrition is not the calculation of calories, but the calculation of an individual balanced diet for micro and macronutrients and at the same time creating optimal conditions for their digestibility! Their deficiency provokes overeating, so the body tries to compensate for the shortage of certain substances. Therefore, it is necessary to establish a systematic supply of all necessary components of food in sufficient quantities. The secret of weight recovery in observance of any "book diets" is that, excluding certain foods from the diet, you do not get with them the substances necessary for the body, and it makes up for their shortage, spending its own reserves. But when you return to the old way of life, the organism that has survived stress due to a diet, with renewed vigor, begins to restore the consumed substances. And this is always a return of even more weight than you lost. With him comes despair.
How to properly organize your meals according to this new concept?
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