It’s easy to get caught up in the calorie counting game. Logically, you would think that the more calories you eat, the more weight you would put on, and vice versa. However, that’s not exactly true. Not all calories are created equal and we must stop treating 100 calories of raw almonds the same as 100 calories of Gummy Bears.
Different foods have different effects on our body, and not just from how full you feel. Our digestive tract is responsible for breaking down food and absorbing nutrients. Each type of food you eat (carbs, fats, or proteins) determines where in your body it will begin breaking down. The longer the food is in your system before being broken down, the longer you feel full.
For example, carbohydrate digestion begins in the mouth, continues in the stomach, and finishes breaking down in the intestine. Our proteins, on the other hand, don’t start digestion until they enter the stomach, while our fats and lipids really don’t start getting broken down until the small intestine (although there is partial breakdown in the mouth and stomach).
So, what does all of this mean to you? If your diet mainly consists of carbohydrates, you will experience a quick burst of energy, burn off everything in a short amount of time, and then become hungry again. Without a proper balance of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats in each meal, your energy will continue to spike and crash.
Next time you’re feeling a little sluggish and going for a quick snack, avoid that 100-calorie pack of cookies or chips! Most of these convenient snacks are nothing more than simple carbs that burn up in your body very quickly. Therefore, that 100-calorie pack becomes the “500-calorie pack” when you keep going back for more!
Need a morning or afternoon snack that will keep you satisfied and full until your next meal? Try celery with almond butter and raw, unfiltered honey drizzled on top. Because it’s almost completely water-based, eating celery and chewing it up burns more calories than you gain from eating it! Mix that with some healthy, organic nut-butter and a drizzle of raw, unfiltered honey and you’re getting a protein-packed snack with immunity boosting properties as well!
Listen below to a portion of our interview with Linda Citron and Citron Nutrition as we discuss the benefits of good calories versus bad calories: