With all this talk about Calories consumed verses Calories burned we thought it might be good to clear up the question, "What is a Calorie?" A Calorie is a unit used to measure energy, specifically the amount of heat necessary to raise the temperature of 1 gram of water 1 degree Celsius. What we concern ourselves with, as those trying to lose body fat, is food energy. This is correctly measured with the Calorie (capital C ) or kilocalorie (kcal),
meaning 1,000 calories. Mistakenly, most dietitians, nutritionists and other food professionals simply use calorie (small c ) when they mean kilocalorie.
Simply put, we use food Calories for energy. To lose weight we need to burn more of these Calories than we eat.
Are all Calories created equal? Yes. The body uses Calories for energy and when needed will take them from any source. Do all sources of food have equal caloric value? No.
1 g fat = 9 Calories
1 protein = 4 Calories
1 g carbohydrate = 4 Calories
1 g alcohol = 7 Calories
One of the most frequently asked questions is, "How many Calories should I eat?" The amount of Calories you should consume each day will change. We all have a basal metabolic rate which is determined by the continued function of our cardiovascular, organ, endocrine, nervous and digestive systems. The energy needs of these bodily functions create the minimum amount of Calories your
body needs to run normally. Combining this with workday activities, stress levels and exercise you can determine how many Calories your body burns each day. From this information it is clear that, for instance, Wednesday will be different than Sunday. Register and log on to fatburn.com to accurately find out how many Calories you eat verses how many Calories you burn and the Caloric difference. Remember, you must burn 3,500 more Calories than you eat to loose one pound of body fat.
Although there are no absolutes, here are some minimum Caloric guidelines to follow so your body continues to function normally.
Adult Women 1000 Cal.
Nursing Women 1500 Cal.
Adult Men 1500 Cal.
When you drop below these Caloric minimums, you risk sending you body into starvation mode. Because your body isn't getting its minimum caloric needs your bodily functions will slow down. The result, fewer minimum calories burned by your basal metabolic rate. If starvation is prolonged, this can become a chronic metabolic state making long-term weight loss much more difficult.