Many people have different opinions on how to lose weight.
- Some will tell you it’s all about the exercise, the workouts you do at the gym!
- Some will tell you that it’s all about balancing your macros and getting more protein and fat than carbs.
- Some will tell you that it’s all about cutting out any unhealthy food, eating only natural, raw foods.
When it comes down to it, there’s really only one factor that really matters for your weight loss: the number of calories you eat.
If you’re serious about weight loss, it’s time for some calorie restriction on your part. It’s definitely easier said than done, but it’s the only way you’re going to shed those pounds like a rockstar!
Why do calories matter? Well, to answer that question, you need to understand what calories really are…
Most people think of calories as a measurement of nutrients in food, but the truth is that the term ‘calorie’ is referring to the amount of energy your body can produce from the food you eat. If you ever read food labels, you’ll notice that there is another measurement next to calories–kJ, or kilo-Joules. This is another measurement of energy, but you don’t need to learn about that. What matters here is that calories are what your body uses for energy.
Every calorie that you eat is turned into fuel for your body, one way or another. Your brain burns about 10% of the calories you consume every day, and your heart needs at least 300 calories in order to keep beating all day long. Every time you move, stand, sit, pick up an object, or turn your head, you are burning calories. You don’t always burn a lot, but it takes energy to move and that energy comes in form of calories.
The average American man burns about 2,000 calories per day, and the average American woman burns about 1,800. The reason that so many people are so overweight and obese is due to the fact that they consume 2,500 to 3,000 calories per day without ever realizing it.
Calorie restriction, therefore, is definitely the key to weight loss. You know you need roughly 2,000 calories per day, so what can you do? Easy: eat fewer than 2,000 calories.
When you consume fewer calories than you need, your body has to find a way to supplement your energy. It turns to the energy it has been storing up for all these years: your body fat. As time passes and you continue to consume fewer calories than your body demands, you end up burning fat a bit at a time. After months of this, you’ll see the results you want.
Here are a few important things to keep in mind:
- Quality matters. When consuming fewer calories, ALWAYS make sure to eat high-quality foods.
- Don’t cut too much. If you go below 1,500 calories (for men) or 1,200 calories (for women), you could end up harming your body.
- Balance your nutrients. You’ll need to make sure to get more fat in your diet, and it’s time to cut back on carbs.
- Do exercise daily. If you don’t, your body will slow down–meaning you won’t burn the fat you want to.
The ideal number of calories to cut out of your daily diet is 500. If you need 2,300 calories, ONLY eat 1,800. If you burn 300 calories doing exercise, consume 2,000 calories. Make sure that you end up consuming 500 calories fewer than you burn every day, and you can lose 1 pound per week. That may not sound like a lot, but it’s steady, reliable results that will soon show visible progress!