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Counting Calories, Should I?

Do you know what Muhammad Ali, Tiger Woods, Michael Jordan, and Michael Schumacher have in common? They are the world champions in sports! Achieving the World Champions title requires practice, dedication, and discipline. Not only that, but athletes need to maintain a healthy diet and nutrient intake. According to, most athletes burn around 3500-4500 calories daily. Thus, a balanced diet is required to have sufficient energy for training and minimizing injuries.

The term ‘calories’ have been infamously portrayed as something one should eliminate if one wants to achieve a healthy diet. However, the opposite could not have been more accurate. Calories are like gasoline for a car and thus energy for your body. It comes in various forms, but the three primary forms are Carbohydrates, Fat, and Protein. 

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Having enough calories is essential because it drives your breathing cycle, blood circulation, cell repairment, and other body functions. So what happens if you run out of calories? And what will happen when you have more of it? 

A calorie deficit is a term used to describe the phenomenon when you run out of calories and your body starts to burn fat into energy. In other words, your body seeks fuel in the “reserve tank. Hence, when people do a calorie deficit diet, their body starts to lose weight. The opposite of too many calories intake is gaining weight.

Counting daily calorie intake can help you build your dietary needs by allowing you to choose what to eat (mindfully!). In addition, it could also help to achieve your nutritional goals. For example, 100 kcal of fruits differs from 100 kcal of pizza. Or, if you plan on gaining more muscles, add more calories like protein because it builds muscles and tendons!

However, should we always count our daily calorie intake? Are there any downsides? Yes. In the long run, counting calories may lead to an eating disorder. You may overlook the nutritional value when you focus on cutting or adding more calories. With a calorie counting approach, you are free to eat 2000 calories of everything. It can be anything from canned, heavily processed, or whole foods. Looking at this from a calorie-counting perspective differs from the nutritional point of view. Furthermore, counting calories makes you avoid highly nutritious food simply because it contains more calories.

With so many crash diet courses, exercises, products, and supplements on the market, ALWAYS make sure that you are consulting with an appropriate source, such as a certified nutritionist. All our body shapes, sizes, and metabolism are different. What works for one person may not be suitable for you. Thus, it is vital to consult with a certified nutritionist before you embark on a healthy and sustainable life.

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