Nutrition 101: Calorie Deficit Through Diet and Exercise Explained
Diet after diet, it seems as though you end back up where you started. According to the Oxford Dictionary, there are two definitions of a diet – (1) the kinds of food that person or community habitually eats or (2) a special course of food to which one restricts oneself. Furthermore, some research has shown that dieting can lead to weight gain, and that at least 67% of persons regain more weight within four to five years after going on a “weight loss” diet (Woolpert, April 3, 2007, UCLA Newsroom). Our approach is to equip our clients with the necessary information to transform their lifestyles and ultimately understand how their body responds to food and exercise. Keto is not the only way of eating that exists, and regardless of the goals you set around your “diet”, it is important to understand your body’s reaction to food and exercise.
To lose weight, regardless of the diet or program utilized, your body has to be in a calorie deficit. Simply put, you have to consume less calories than you expend. This can happen in two ways – through diet and/or exercise. According to the American College of Sports Medicine, to lose 1 pound you need to create a deficit of 3,500 calories. This is equivalent to a deficit of 500 calories a day achieved three ways – (1) eating 500 less calories of food ; (2) burning 500 calories during exercise or (3) a combination of food and exercise.
However, if you do not understand the calories your body needs to fulfill its bodily functions (see our Blog on “Your Macros Matter to Us”), you can be in a deficit of 500 calories and yet not lose weight. A simple and what we deem and “experimental” approach, is to make some changes to your diet and exercise activity (see our IG post on 500 Calorie Exercise), and track progress on scale or through body measurements. The only way to track what you eat is by measuring!!! There are no short cuts. We suggest using a food dairy and recording what you eat (including snacks…), along with your workouts. So at the end of the week, when you perform your measurements, you will be able to compare your progress with your activities and diet. To track the calories burned, you can invest in a smart watch for precision. Most cardio equipment provides you with an indicator of calories burned but this again is an estimate.
Until next Blog!