If you are trying to lose weight you may be trying to cut calories. The best way to cut them is to know how many you are consuming. Being a personal trainer I have counseled numerous clients who insist that they “barely eat anything”. When I ask for them to write things down so that we can examine their diet I was at first shocked that many of the people who I worked with really were not consuming the amount of calories that I would assume that they were. Many older women would come to me complaining that they continue to eat less, yet they were unable to drop any weight. Assuming that their metabolisms had just tanked because of their age, they had all but given up.
I started to really question the theories about weight loss. There is a simple equation about calories in versus calories out that is the key too weight loss, or at least I thought, but could all those scientists be wrong? Could it really be that there are some people who are incapable of losing weight no matter how little they eat? One day a woman who I was training walked in for her session holding onto a Mountain Dew. She put it down in front of me, pulled out her food journal for us to look over, and I realized that there were no beverages recorded at all.
I was just assuming that she was drinking nothing but calorie free drinks, but here she was in front of me with a high calorie soda and clearly it wasn’t her first ever. I began to question her about what she was hydrating herself with during the day. She looked at me very quizzically and said, “I don’t know, I hadn’t really thought about it”. I looked down to her soft drink and asked her how many she had in a regular week. “I have at least one a day, I am not a coffee drinker, so this is my caffeine”, she said with sort of a giggle.
It was in that moment that I realized that most of the clients that I had were not recording the beverages that they were consuming. When I asked them to keep a journal of what they were “eating”, they had not made the connection that a calorie is a calorie. Whether the things you consume are those that you have to chew or not, if you put them in your body, it has to find a way to convert those calories into energy. A liquid calorie is the same as a solid calorie. There is no difference.
The mistake that most people make is to think that the beverages that they drink don’t count toward their calorie intake. Not only could that not be farther from the truth, it is those empty calories which are the biggest source of sabotage for your dietary goals. When you drink sodas, or high calorie drinks, you are working against yourself. By taking in empty calories, you are not only feeding your body sugar which is an anti-diet substance, you are drinking something that is a diuretic. If your body does not have the proper hydration it can cause lethargy and sluggishness, a double whammy to your weight loss goals.
When you are counting the amount of calories you consume you have to add all of them whether you drink or eat them. When you consider that it only takes about 500 calories less per day to drop an average of two to five pounds a month, if you do nothing but remove calorie beverages from your daily routine you will lose weight without changing anything else. Therefore, if you want to lose weight without effort, put the juice and soda down and reach for a glass of water. It will give you energy and balance the weight loss equation by cutting the calories you take in.