Consuming Calories vs. Energy

The United States nutrition labels state the caloric intake per serving of food. Australia lists the Energy per serving of food.

We have sunk into a habit of checking the calories on a snack but ignoring the micronutrients and ingredients that we are actually consuming. The small bag of chips for your afternoon snack may say under 100 calories but the sodium content may be over 10% of youre daily value and contain high amounts of additional perservatives to amp up the taste and color of the product.

Let’s take a step back and view these calories as ENERGY, just take a moment to imagine eating a source of energy that contains starch, fat, and sodium. Would you then rethink what you grab for an afternoon snack?

The focus should NOT BE SOLELY ON CALORIES. When you go in grocery store and opt for quick sources of food, you are buying a product, often a modified product. What is labeled as “vegan”, “gluten free”, “reduced fat”, may have substitutes that are just plain NOT GOOD FOR YOU.

This brings us to lack of nutrients and our body wants MORE. What we often assume more means is calories, so the cycle of eating nutrient dense foods at low calories begins. The substitute of an energy shot to gives us a burst of caffeine for 5 calories, will not fix the issue. What your body is actually craving is complex carbohydrates, lean protein, vitamin B, iron, and other micro nutrients.

Don’t be afraid of the number be afraid of what you’re consuming.

~Next time you’re craving salt drink a glass of water. You may be dehydrated.

~Next time you’re craving something sweet opt for mango, pineapple, or peaches! I also love a banana with peanut butter, dash of cinnamon, and a drizzle of honey!

~Next time you want to eat out of boredom opt for carrots, watermelon, almonds, or pop your own popcorn so you can control the salt (and maybe add a little garlic powder).

We don’t want to live a life of restrictions. There are always options to enjoy savory foods without the calorie counter and guilt. It is when we form a HABIT of not caring about what were consuming when it becomes a problem. When you typically eat to fuel your body it is okay to eat the creamy bowl of pasta from your favorite restaurant with a glass of wine and yes, desert after. And no, you don’t need to eat less calories the next day.

We are about a balanced life, we consume to fuel the body and maybe the soul with our guilty pleasure food, but we don’t neglect our body from the micronutrients it deserves.

Follow us on twitter! @balancedliving6

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