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Is a calorie a calorie?

hdatreshdatres Posts: 640Member Member Posts: 640Member Member
Is a calorie a calorie? Do they all burn the same?
edited May 2016
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Replies

  • VintageFelineVintageFeline Posts: 6,782Member Member Posts: 6,782Member Member
    A calorie is a unit of measurement. Like miles or gallons or cms or mls. So yes, a calorie is a calorie.
  • MissusMoonMissusMoon Posts: 1,911Member Member Posts: 1,911Member Member
    In terms of weight loss and weight gain, yes.
  • paulgads82paulgads82 Posts: 256Member Member Posts: 256Member Member
    Yes Valorie.
  • HornsbyHornsby Posts: 10,372Member Member Posts: 10,372Member Member
    Is a pound of feathers the same as a pound of lead?
  • NorthCascadesNorthCascades Posts: 9,504Member Member Posts: 9,504Member Member
    For nutrition and health, 100 calories of real food are better than 100 calories of corn chips or raw sugar. But those will all have the same weight loss/gain effect. There's nothing like carbs count double, things you eat before 5 pm count half, or anything like that.
  • hdatreshdatres Posts: 640Member Member Posts: 640Member Member
    J72FIT wrote: »
    And yet another thread that will eventually get locked by the mods.

    I'll play along though.

    Yes, a calorie is a calorie...

    I don't mean to sound dumb, but I'm just starting out here. Thank you for the information
  • lemurcat12lemurcat12 Posts: 30,886Member Member Posts: 30,886Member Member
    A calorie is a unit of measurement. Like miles or gallons or cms or mls. So yes, a calorie is a calorie.

    This.

    Obviously foods are not all the same so what you choose matters for nutrition and health and such. But "a calorie" is not a synonym for "a food" so when people say "a calorie is a calorie" they do not mean that steak is identical to broccoli.
  • michelleszmichellesz Posts: 423Member Member Posts: 423Member Member
    A calorie burned is a calorie earned :)
  • WinoGelatoWinoGelato Posts: 13,402Member Member Posts: 13,402Member Member
    Didn't we already have this thread in this section? Was it locked?

    OP I know you said you are new here but this is an often asked and often debated question. You may find a lot of good info in existing threads that are still available via the search feature.

    Oh and yes - a calorie is a calorie from a unit of energy perspective. This does not mean that all foods provide the same nutritional benefits.
  • MalcolmX1983MalcolmX1983 Posts: 214Member Member Posts: 214Member Member
    Hornsby wrote: »
    Is a pound of feathers the same as a pound of lead?

    But would the pain level be the same if they were dropped on someone's head?

    Brb, need to find a tall building.
  • diannethegeekdiannethegeek Posts: 14,831Member Member Posts: 14,831Member Member
    WinoGelato wrote: »
    Didn't we already have this thread in this section? Was it locked?

    OP I know you said you are new here but this is an often asked and often debated question. You may find a lot of good info in existing threads that are still available via the search feature.

    Oh and yes - a calorie is a calorie from a unit of energy perspective. This does not mean that all foods provide the same nutritional benefits.

    Yes and no.

    http://community.myfitnesspal.com/en/discussion/10332396/are-all-calories-the-same#latest

    http://community.myfitnesspal.com/en/discussion/10345604/a-quick-refresher-on-a-calorie-is-a-calorie/p1

    Both are still open.
  • hdatreshdatres Posts: 640Member Member Posts: 640Member Member
    I don't know if you have to burn calories Harder between eating a candy bar or carrot sticks that have the same amount calories.
  • kimny72kimny72 Posts: 14,630Member Member Posts: 14,630Member Member
    Nope. For weight loss alone, if you eat less calories than you burn, you will lose weight, regardless of what those calories were.

    For health, obviously, what you eat can be important.
  • JaneSnoweJaneSnowe Posts: 1,282Member Member Posts: 1,282Member Member
    hdatres wrote: »
    I don't know if you have to burn calories Harder between eating a candy bar or carrot sticks that have the same amount calories.

    I once overheard someone say that all the fat that you've ever eaten from bacon can never be burned off. You are stuck with it forever. I was a young, dumb teenager and the idea stuck with me and made me afraid to eat bacon. Well, actually I still ate it but resigned myself to living forever with that fat (I told you I was dumb! :D )

    Later I learned that for losing weight, it really truly is just CI CO. It doesn't matter where the calories originated, be it bacon or nutella or 10 pounds of carrots. If you maintain a deficit you will lose the fat--all the fat equally--, no matter the original source.
  • Elise4270Elise4270 Posts: 7,633Member, Premium Member Posts: 7,633Member, Premium Member
    Hornsby wrote: »
    Is a pound of feathers the same as a pound of lead?

    Ones more dense >:)
  • RoxieDawnRoxieDawn Posts: 15,518Member, Premium Member Posts: 15,518Member, Premium Member
    Elise4270 wrote: »
    Hornsby wrote: »
    Is a pound of feathers the same as a pound of lead?

    Ones more dense >:)

    LOL..
    edited May 2016
  • moe0303moe0303 Posts: 933Member Member Posts: 933Member Member
    hdatres wrote: »
    I don't know if you have to burn calories Harder between eating a candy bar or carrot sticks that have the same amount calories.

    @hdatres, if your goal is weightloss, all you really have to track is calories. Eating 500 calories in carrots will provide the same amount of energy to your body as 500 calories of candy bars. There are other factors to consider, like how full you are, whether eating one leads to more, and the nutrition effect you want to achieve, but in terms of weight, they mean the same.

    MFP will automatically set you up on a calorie limit based on your weight goals. Regardless of what you eat, if you stay within that limit, you have a high likelihood of achieving that goal.

    Where people often mess up is either not tracking their food, or not tracking their food correctly. There are a lot of entries in the database which are simply incorrect. If something seems too good to be true, it probably is. If you eat a 240 calorie snickers bar then find an entry for it which is only 200, chances are that it was entered wrong. Question everything. Soon, you will get a good sense of what is real and what is fantasy.

    Also, keep in mind that there are many ways to "skin a cat". You are the best source to determine what will work best for you. You can achieve your goals through almost any of the methods people will suggest to you (i.e. "clean eating, low fat, low carb, high fat, bananas, etc.) just make sure you track accurately and keep below that limit set by MFP.
  • VividVeganVividVegan Posts: 200Member Member Posts: 200Member Member
    Technically yes for weight loss. However, for prep or getting lean/defined I recommend nutrient dense foods. I remember when I lost over 50 pounds on just calorie counting alone while eating whatever I want. I became underweight and skinny-fat. I fixed it by switching to wholesome foods especially high in protein and complex carbs as I increased intensity of my workouts (which was easier to endure with the nutrients I consumed) and I built mass and leaned out. Have been maintaining on this and have never felt better.
  • hardyd85hardyd85 Posts: 21Member Member Posts: 21Member Member
    You can eat whatever you want to lose weight as long as you are burning more than your eating. Problem is the amount of junk food you can eat per calorie vs real food per calorie will have you wanting more food. Just look at an oreo for example. Those things are likely 200 calories for 1 cookie. If your only eating 1200 calories a day your going to be starving. Rice and chicken will be more filling and have about the same calorie intake making it easier to diet. Also junk food is engineered to make you crave more.
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