What are Empty Calories?
Posted by Sweet Belly on
Have you ever heard someone talk about 'empty calories.' It's a controversial topic in the nutrition world because some people suggest that so long as you are in calorie deficit, you will lose weight. That's true. But you won't look and feel your best. Why? You're not feeding your body the proper nutrition it needs to function at its best.
Put it this way, if you compare your body to a fancy, new car. You want to make sure you use the right washing fluid for the interior, the leather seats you'd probably use a different product and for the exterior, all different cleaning supplies all together. So, your body (the car) needs different supplies to perform different bodily tasks, like giving the cells in your body food.
OKAY, now back to the car. Should you use the same cleaner on the interior and exterior of the car, it will be clean. But it won't look and smell its best. Back to our bodies. Feed your body generic food that satisfies craving food..Good, you're fed. You're still not looking and feeling the best.
Are you still following? We're going to move over to food and calories now.. Let's take a bowl of blueberries and a bowl of French fries. If I say that the quantity of each food is the same in the bowl, so let's give it a number-- 100 calories worth of blueberries in bowl 1 and 100 calories of French fries in bowl 2.
You can eat either bowl and you've consumed 100 calories. There is no question about that, right? Right.
But here's where they differ.. the blueberries that you just ate are going to:
1. satisfy your craving to eat food
2. give your body nutrient X, Y, and Z, and NOW--
3. your body uses X, Y, and Z to feed the parts of your body that need it.
As for the 100 calories of French fries, you've eaten 100 calories (just like the blueberries), but because the fries are deeply fried, the nutrients are stripped away. So, you feed your body but there's not much nutritional benefit to the calories.
What's the point of knowing there's a difference between 100 calories of French fries and 100 calories of blueberries? A big one! Your body needs certain nutrients to heal, keep your insides and outsides working and feeling great-- and nothing feels better than having energy.
After you ate the French fries, your body still needs the nutrients you didn't feed it. Your body will let you know it does, by sending you some more "craving" signals. And this is what leads us to eating more food than we actually need.
We're meant to feel our best. Our bodies want us to feel this. It's hard to recognize when your body sends you signals that it needs nutrients. So how do you know what to feed it? Educate yourself about healthy food options so that eventually, you reach for more healthy options. Indulging now and then is normal. You should enjoy yourself, and the food you eat should make you feel fabulous. If it doesn't, it's not for you!
FOR MORE HEALTHY RECIPES, SEE MY "RECIPES" TAG OR VISIT INSTAGRAM @MYSWEETBELLY
I use clean ingredients, to help you feel your best. Always, in all ways <3