Posted by: 4pack | July 11, 2008

IDEAL WEIGHT AND WAIST SIZE…COUNT ON CALORIE RESTRICTION TO WORK

DIET’S NEED TO BE ABOVE ALL “CALORIE RESTRICTIVE”…REDUCE THE CALORIES PERIOD…LOW CARB, LOW FAT, LOW SUGAR… THE KEY IS “LOW”….COUNT THE CALORIES …HERE IS MY RULE, IF YOU ARE 6″0 AND UNDER, AVERAGE UNDER 2000 CALORIES PER DAY…6″ TO 6’4” , AVERAGE BETWEEN 2000 AND 2400 CALORIES PER DAY….

(From MailTribune.com)

Calorie counting — one of the oldest methods of weight loss — appears to be making a strong comeback: there are new books touting the benefits of calorie restriction, calorie counting Web sites, portable calorie readers, 100-calorie snack packs.

New York City recently enacted a regulation requiring some chain restaurants to post calories on their menus, and lawmakers in California and King County, Wash., have considered similar measures.

It all makes low carb, high protein, and no sugar seem out of fashion.

“We count in America everything but calories,” says Madelyn Fernstrom, founder and director of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Weight Management Center. But “calories are the single most important thing to count when you are trying to lose weight or maintain weight. There’s no way around this.”

Research backs this up. A U.S. Department of Agriculture-Tufts University study published last year revealed that when it comes to losing weight, calories count more than food types.

And most people know: take in too many calories, gain weight. To lose weight, slash calories — 3,500 calories equal one pound — through a combination of diet and exercise.

“But how do you reduce calories without having people suffer?” says Dr. Melina Jampolis, author of “The Busy Person’s Guide to Permanent Weight Loss,” a book that provides simple diet and exercise strategies. “It’s easier said than done.”

The USDA recommends that women ages 19 and up consume between 1,600 and 2,400 calories depending on age, height and activity level to maintain weight. For men, the numbers are 2,000 to 3,000 calories. Dietitians suggest dieters aim to lose 1-2 pounds a week, which means burning or cutting 500 to 1,000 calories more a day.

But when something as simple as a piece of coffee cake at Starbucks contains 430 of those calories, making good choices can be laborious.

Samantha Shipley, 22, of Phoenix, has been carefully watching her calories for the past couple months and has lost 12 pounds, but it has been painful.

“It gets frustrating,” says Shipley. “I’m young and I want to go out. But to me, it’s worth it.”

Even with careful calorie counting, many registered dietitians point out that losing weight in a healthy fashion can be complex. Different people respond to different approaches. And dramatically cutting any single thing can be counterproductive and even dangerous.

For example, eating fewer carbs may help people control their hunger, resulting in weight loss, says Jampolis, but Atkins followers miss out on “significant healthy foods.”

Dieters who try to lose weight by cutting something other than calories may succeed — but that may be because cutting calories is a byproduct of their method, she says. For example, fat has 9 calories per gram compared with carbs and protein, which each have 4 calories per gram, so reducing fat will mean people are cutting calories.

Counting calories can also have its own problems, because science aside, people are people, says registered dietitian Heather Bauer, co-author of “The Wall Street Diet.”

“If you start to count calories, it becomes monotonous and time consuming,” she says.

She says a food diary can help people spot eating patterns but her advice to her clients is to eat less and make healthier choices.

Gillian Hood-Gabrielson, a fitness and intuitive eating coach agrees, adding that restricting calories can lead to overeating, resulting in feelings of guilt.

She points out that most of her clients at the Chico, Calif-based Healthier Outcomes are “walking calories guides,” and are still overweight.

Her approach focuses on helping people learn to eat when they are hungry and stop when they are full. Most of her clients are emotional eaters and she works with them to give up the diet mentality.

Mark Trowbridge, president and CEO of the Coral Gables Chamber of Commerce in Florida, says calorie counting didn’t work for him. He has lost 70 pounds since Christmas, 13 pounds in the first two weeks, limiting carbs.

“I wasn’t doing any counting other than carbs,” he says.

Even for non-calorie counters, posting calories on menus can help people make healthier choices, says Jampolis.

“I certainly don’t see it as a solution,” she says. “The people who are always really calorie conscious probably are making the better choices in the first place. The people who aren’t, are probably going to ignore the calories. But it is a good start.”

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