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Dietitians say counting calories bad



  • J72FITJ72FIT Member Posts: 5,709 Member Member Posts: 5,709 Member
    gooz71 wrote: »
    I see many dietitians (on TikTok) say counting calories is a really bad idea and can cause an eating disorder. I do find that when I count calories I’m hyper focused on food but feel in control like I’m doing something about my weight. BUT when I’m counting calories I also feel out of control and want to binge. I want to count calories but worried it’s giving me an eating disorder, but if I don’t count then I don’t know if I’m in a deficit to lose. Feeling stuck

    IMO, counting calories is merely a tool to get from point A to point B...
  • Dogmom1978Dogmom1978 Member Posts: 1,590 Member Member Posts: 1,590 Member
    Dogmom1978 wrote: »
    bubus05 wrote: »
    jamloche wrote: »
    bubus05 wrote: »
    Dogmom1978 wrote: »
    bubus05 wrote: »
    Ohh boy, we have just had a debate about counting calories on a different thread, that went kind of hot. I stated 'counting calories is a waste of time' and I received some backlash some even felt insulted. I still believe it is in itself not enough. It is a great tool to track calorie intake to achive calorie deficit, and if one's calorie deficit is sustainable on the long run it should be off great benefit. What is more important than calorie deficit/calorie counting is the type of calorie one takes in. It can mean the difference between a successful diet or frustration.

    @bubus05 It got hot because of how very incorrect the “advise” you were giving was (which was proven by multiple people on that thread).

    For health, you should obviously try to get enough protein and fat. For losing weight, calorie deficit is all that matters. Carbs aren’t evil. IF you have a health condition where you have to limit certain macros, then yes, you should track those more carefully (a couple of examples: diabetes or kidney disease).

    As said above, for most of us, counting calories works. Most of us don’t have an actual eating disorder. If you do, you are probably underweight and shouldn’t count calories because it will likely trigger more unhealthy eating behaviors.

    OP, based on some of your other threads, I’m going to ask if you have ever talked to a professional. If not, maybe talking to a therapist would be helpful.

    No I have never talked to a professional however that doesn't mean I can't read or listen to professionals. By the way there is no need to be personal about this I consider everyone a friend here after all we are all interested in how diets work or dont work that's some common ground isn't it.
    I pointed out a calorie deficit or calorie extra intake for that matter will influence one's metabolism, this is proven by multiple studies and experts, therefore equally as important-as calorie counting- if not more so is what one will consume. How am I wrong?

    I admire your tenacity, @bubus05 ... but as of this minute, you have 23 total posts on MFP, and 210 disagrees. That's plain amazing to me. Now I'm not saying that proves or disproves anything about your beliefs, but you've definitely found yourself a hot topic. You must understand by now that people here are going to challenge you every time you bring it up.

    In a weird way I kind of like to be challenged I dont take anything here personally, we agree to disagree there is nothing wrong with that. Yes most will disagree with me but I dont mind. Everything that I wrote here is based on
    experience. The why and how is based on research, now I might be missing something or misunderstand something quite possible I am no expert myself. I think that most will agree that depending on what one eats will influence one's metabolism. The question is how or at what point during diet. IMHO a simply reduced calorie intake with no regards to the type of calorie one eats is not the best most effective method, if it is not sustainable. If it is sustainable no worries the pounds one lost will remain lost regardless of the diet being on high carb low carb whatever kind of diet. I am not advocating against 'counting the calories' but try to point out that a simply reduced calorie diet may not get you the results you want or that long term may not be sustainable. Here is the science part

    😂😂😂 I mean honestly, it almost seems like you’re trying to win an award for most disagrees or something....

    Of course if I weigh less I burn fewer calories. That’s going to occur regardless of what “diet” you choose. And people regain the weight because they don’t continue the behavior that resulted in the weight loss in the first place, not because of some magic where their bodies decide to hold onto all the carbs forever and ever. 😆😆😆😆😆😆

    If I understand correctly, they are arguing that post-weight loss one is burning even FEWER calories than one would anticipate for body mass and activity. That is, the body has undergone a metabolic slowdown above and beyond that which is related to simply maintaining less body weight.

    The point is that even if this is true, this is something that would happen even if one loses weight through limiting white foods or only eating on odd-numbered hours or forever limiting carbohydrates or only eating foods that you can juggle or whatever the jack du jour is. This would make it simply a biological truism that we all must deal with and one could still make adjustments for it when determining the number of calories one should eat.

    For example, if general guidelines would indicate that I need 1,500 calories to maintain my weight, but due to some metabolic issue I actually need 1,300, I would realize that by tracking my weight over time and I could adjust my daily goal to the level at which I maintain my ideal weight -- 1,300. That I should generally expect to maintain at 1,500 is nothing more than a random factoid that I can disregard, as real life results have shown me that it is not true in my case. If I'm someone who is already counting calories, this will likely be an easier process for me than it would be if I lost weight through some diet hack that completely disregarded calories because I wouldn't have the data to track and make appropriate adjustments.

    Yeah I got it. I just wonder where some people find these studies. The last one he/she posted argued that people who don’t count calories don’t lose weight. They posted it to argue the point that counting calories alone won’t work. 🤦‍♀️
  • gooz71gooz71 Member Posts: 93 Member Member Posts: 93 Member
    breefoshee wrote: »
    I definitely think it depends on the person. Some people can log and have really healthy outlooks when they go over their calories or just in their relation to food in general.

    I've noticed that I, personally, have more consistent losses and a healthier relationship with food when I don't log. I just become obsessed with the numbers and accuracy to an unhealthy point. I obsess over everything that doesn't fit in my calories. I get frustrated when my numbers don't equate to loss because, even if I went over, I feel like I am working really hard mentally.

    I do keep a mental estimate based on passed logging and I check calories on things that I don't have any ideas about. This has made it easier for me and I have consistently lost weight every month since doing this.

  • lemurcat2lemurcat2 Member, Premium Posts: 6,506 Member Member, Premium Posts: 6,506 Member
    Mellouk89 wrote: »
    So what do you do when you're eating out and there is no nutrition label? What if you buy meals at the grocery store and it has no information on macros?

    It happens regularly in my case. Almost everyday

    Estimate. But I'd also try to avoid having it happen so much. If you eat similarly on a weekly basis, however, you can estimate and adjust based on results.
  • gooz71gooz71 Member Posts: 93 Member Member Posts: 93 Member
    This is exactly what I struggle with! I get so focused on the numbers I end up driving myself crazy. But if I don’t track my calories then I have no idea if I’m in a deficit.
    edited November 2020
  • gooz71gooz71 Member Posts: 93 Member Member Posts: 93 Member
    Thank you all so much. I probably do need to talk to a therapist as suggested. As far as TikTok there are actually a lot of professionals using it to get themselves out there and direct you to their website/business.
  • gooz71gooz71 Member Posts: 93 Member Member Posts: 93 Member
    @janejellyroll yes this makes sense. Thanks.
  • djaxon1djaxon1 Member Posts: 73 Member Member Posts: 73 Member
    I think once you are familiar with calorie content you could just eyeball it , maybe . . . but it's all too easy to delude yourself.
    Especially when it's your favourite flavour !
  • New_Heavens_EarthNew_Heavens_Earth Member Posts: 608 Member Member Posts: 608 Member
    gooz71 wrote: »
    Thank you all so much. I probably do need to talk to a therapist as suggested. As far as TikTok there are actually a lot of professionals using it to get themselves out there and direct you to their website/business.

    Not only just a therapist but a registered dietitian as well. Not a health/ weight loss coach or vague nutrition title, but a registered dietitian.
  • J72FITJ72FIT Member Posts: 5,709 Member Member Posts: 5,709 Member
    CI<CO for fat loss. Put together a plan that gets you there safely with the least amount of pain and suffering. If that means counting then count. If that means low carb go for it. If that means low fat so be it. And on and on and on. In the end it's all very individual...
    edited November 2020
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