Calorie Counting – Necessary or Fad?

Popular, modern-day diet club plans are based almost entirely on getting you to consume less calories.

Shakes, such as Herbalife, Juice Plus, Shakeology and Body by Vi are based almost entirely on getting you to consume less calories.

Some people count calories every day, using apps like myfitnesspal.

But do you really need to count calories to lose weight or to get into smaller clothes sizes?

Just dropping calories alone can get pounds and inches off, and get you into smaller clothes sizes, there's no doubt about that. But, and it's a big but, through calorie counting alone, while still eating the same highly-processed, high sugar foods, you would not change your relationship with food, and would still be tempted to overindulge through eating those same 'trigger foods'.

You would also still be eating foods that are harmful to your health. Changing your relationship with food and eating foods that are complementary to your health, being anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer, rather than disease-causing foods, is much more beneficial to your health and well being than simply 'losing weight' through calorie counting.

Current recommendations state that the average adult male should aim for 2500 calories per day to maintain his body weight, and for ladies, it's 2000 calories per day.

But a calorie is not just a calorie. Some calories are much better utilised by the body, and energy is actually expended during the digestive process. Natural fats are better processed by the body, so you can actually consume more calories from fats (which will help to keep you more satiated) and still lose weight. Some vegetables are so low in calories that you can actually burn up more calories digesting them than you actually gain from eating that food.

This is termed the 'thermogenic property' of food. Protein-based foods like meats, fish, eggs and nuts, have naturally higher thermogenic properties than processed carbohydrate foods, which are far more likely to cause blood sugar spikes and cause body fat storage and weight gain. Natural fats are also processed much better by the body than sugar. A bag of almonds, for example, might contain 600 calories, and because of the protein content and the great fats and fibre, you might end up absorbing 450 calories (a rough estimate). Whereas consuming 4x cans of Coca-Cola at 150 calories each, would also total 600 calories, but you'd not only absorb every single one of those calories, but would also have massive blood sugar spikes causing body fat storage (and would be wrecking your health at the same time).

Where Calorie Counting Can Be Useful

Calorie counting can be handy for checking that you're not having too few calories and going into 'starvation mode'. You see, your body is a fantastic energy storer, with that energy being tens of thousands (often hundreds of thousands) of stored calories in the form of body fat. If your body feels that it is being starved and not being fed enough, then it can stubbornly hold onto what it has, and will not relinquish body fat stores at all.

Calorie counting is useful for seeing the huge amounts of calories that you are ingested during drinking sessions and at buffets, or where you're doing both. The amount of calories from alcohol alone can multiply into the thousands, without even factoring in the buffet. This can be a real eye opener and seeing the calories mounting into the multiple thousands can help to encourage you to make better choices when socialising in future.

So calorie counting can have its uses, particularly if your body weight is not dropping despite your efforts to shed the pounds. But ultimately if you eat proper, unprocessed, natural food in its most natural form the majority of the time, then you won't need to count calories at all and can definitely get into those smaller sized clothes while also changing your relationship with food and becoming so much more healthy and energetic.

For your free Nutritional Re-education that will get your first 10 pounds off rapidly, contact Rezults today for a free Transformation Session worth £49. From what you learn at that single session, you'll be much more knowledgeable about nutrition and will immediately start progressing towards dropping your first clothes size.

To receive lots of great advice that will get you into smaller clothes, looking and feeling great, enter your details below.

Why We Need Fats and Why Low Fat Doesn't Work

Why We Need Fats and Why Low Fat Doesn't Work

For decades now, fat has been demonised as the 'enemy' of those who are carrying extra weight and body fat. This reasoning is down to one reason and one reason only: fat contains more calories per gram than either carbohydrate or protein. Just because fat has more calories per gram doesn't actually mean that it's bad. Not only is fat not 'bad' per se, it's actually essential, for a number of purposes:

A source of energy – Our body uses the fat we eat, and fats we make from other nutrients in our bodies, to provide the energy for most of our life-functions.

Energy store – The extra calories that we consume, but do not need to use immediately, are stored for future use in special fat cells (adipose tissue). However, sugar consumption also causes body fat storage and is more guilty of this than fat intake.

Essential fatty acids – Dietary fats that are essential for growth development and cell functions, but cannot be made by our body’s processes.

Proper functioning of nerves and brain - fats are part of myelin - a fatty material which wraps around our nerve cells so that they can send electrical messages. Our brains contain large amounts of essential fats.

Maintaining healthy skin and other tissues. All our body cells need to contain some fats as essential parts of cell membranes, controlling what goes in and out of our cells.

Transporting fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E and K through the bloodstream to where they are needed.

Forming steroid hormones needed to regulate many bodily processes.

The essential fatty acids in fats also play a role in brain development, blood clotting and managing inflammation (inflammation is the cause of so many different ailments).

You also need fat to properly satiate you. If all you ate were lean protein and vegetables, and even with some grains added in, you'd find yourself hungry, frequently.

When the fat is removed from products sweetened with sugar E.G. flavoured yoghurts, extra sugar is put in its place. The sugar is worse for your health and is the real cause of diabetes and heart disease (Scotland and the USA's #1 killer).

You can get some great quality fats from oily fish (e.g. herring, salmon and mackerel). These are abundant in omega-3 fats, while omega-6 (not so good) is mainly found in plant foods such as sunflower oil and rapeseed oil.

Trans fats are the ones to avoid. These are created artificially through a process known as hydrogenation (which involves heating and chemical structure change – making them a risk for cancer). Artificial trans fats are mostly found in fast foods, fried foods and commercial baked products such as cookies and crisps, and are the most unhealthy fats. Natural trans fats can be found in small amounts in milk and beef, and in quite large concentration in cheese.

Think about it. Fat kept us alive through times of famine. If it weren't for fat, we probably would have been wiped out millions of years ago because we would have struggled to get enough calories into us during times of famine.

Mother's milk is 50% fat. There is nothing more healthy for a developing baby than mother's milk.

To ensure that are consuming enough fats, have the following:

Olive oil as a cold dressing over your vegetables, whether salads or other cooked veg.

Use coconut oil when cooking, or butter. (Believe it or not, you can use lard also).

Use butter on potatoes and cooked veg.

Use peanut (not KP branded), cashew or almond butter as spreads, or for a super-quick snack to fuel you, use them with seeds and stir, or spread them onto a banana.

So ultimately the reasons why low doesn't work are:

Because fat is required for a number of bodily processes to work properly

You will always feel hungry without the fat

Sugar is put in its place when it's removed (even in 'diet company' products).

​So ensure that you take on plenty of fats via coconut oil, butter, olive oil as a cold dressing, and nuts. You'll be fuller for longer, will not crave nearly as much, and you will look and feel so much better.

To receive lots of great advice that will get you into smaller clothes, looking and feeling great, enter your details below.

For a full nutritional re-education worth £49, completely free of charge, book in for one of our free Transformation Sessions today.

Best Belly Fat Busting Tips

Below you will find a number of tips for busting the belly fat, which you can follow to get you into those clothes in the wardrobe/attic, that you haven't fitted into in years.

Eat vegetables. Digesting veg often actually burns more calories than the veg contains. (But make sure to get your daily calories from other sources).

Eat protein foods with every meal. Protein foods help to fill you up and you actually burn up some of the calories while digesting these also.

Increase your lean muscle tissue. Muscle burns calories and keeps your metabolism up. Your lean muscle tissue is only retained when you do resistance training as part of your exercise programme.

Cut out all sugar, including sugary alcoholic drinks, such as wine or ciders.

Make unhealthy foods and alcohol less convenient in your home, workplace and car. The more convenient it is for you to indulge, the greater the likelihood that you'll do it. Put the 'treats' out of sight on top of cupboards, give them away, or put your alcohol collection out into the garage.

Moderate the alcohol intake. Not only are alcoholic drinks usually very high in calories, but they're also mostly combined with sugar-laden mixers such as fizzy drinks and fruit juices.

Eat fat. Fat doesn't make you fat, and is in fact essential for your nervous system to function properly, and to help to regulate your hormones. If your hormones are off kilter, you may not be able to shed body fat or weight at all.

Ditch the grains, especially wheat-based ones. Wheat, especially bread, is largely contributing to the obesity epidemic. Wheat-based products, like bread, pasta, wraps and cereals, are highly processed and have a lot of chemical content, causing IBS, bloating and a whole host of other ailments.

Always keep yourself accountable, by posting meal pics to your trainer, keeping a food diary or using the myfitnesspal app.

Schedule your meal making and workouts into your diary so that you stick to them. If it's everything else first, and exercise (or meal planning and preparation) “later, maybe”, life will take over and you'll end up never getting it done.

Change your mindset from 'I'll burn it off' or 'but I'm doing a lot of exercise' to 'I will live a healthy lifestyle, focusing on the nutritional side more than the exercise side'. (Most people do the exact opposite and can't shift the pounds).

Focus On Your Food. The more you grab meals on the go and then multitask, the easier it is to lose track of how much you’re actually consuming. Be more mindful when eating (feel the textures, inhale the aromas), because engaging your senses slows down the process, leaving you more satisfied.

Ditch the 'all you can eat' buffets. The temptation to overindulge will be extremely high. You cannot 'burn it off tomorrow', believe me. All Inclusive holidays can be deadly for overconsumption also, but you can still eat healthily without overindulging. Pile up your plate with veg and once you've eaten through a load of that you may find yourself skipping dessert. Just because it's there doesn't mean that you have to have it.

Eat More Slowly. It takes 20 to 30 minutes for the fullness cue to travel from the stomach to the brain. Women over the age of 40 can have an even harder time knowing when to stop eating, because the hormones that signal satiety are among those that fluctuate during perimenopause. Eating more slowly can help you eat less.

Avoid the all day drinking and eating out from lunchtime scenarios. If you meet for lunch and start drinking then, and you know you're going out at night, you may just keep drinking all day throughout the day and end up consuming a lot of both alcohol and food, and have a belt that fits tighter the next day.

Add herbs instead of salt, sauces or cheese. Black pepper or cinnamon work well also.

Set a Healthy Goal. With a goal in sight and booked e.g. an obstacle race event or 5KM, you're more likely to be mindful of what you're doing with both training and nutrition.

Now get to the belly fat busting and we'll look forward to seeing you looking great in a new outfit at a special occasion.

To receive lots of great advice that will get you into smaller clothes, looking and feeling great, enter your details below.

The Truth About Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates (carbs) are talked about a lot in the weight loss industry. There are entire nutrition plans (diets) devoted to eliminating carbs. So does this make these plans successful, dangerous or something in between? Are carbs really bad? Read on for the real truth about carbs.

Probably everyone has heard of the Atkins Diet, where all carbohydrate foods are eliminated in favour of eating meats (protein and fat based) in unlimited quantities. In terms of getting body weight and size down, this plan does work, but is it necessary to eliminate all carbs in order to get the pounds off?

What it all comes down to, and you can use this as a rule of thumb with anything nutritional, is how much the food source has been processed and removed it from its natural form. The more the food item, whether carbs or otherwise, has been meddled with by man, the worse it becomes for your health and the more likely it tends to be to cause not only obesity, but ill health also.

What you need is unprocessed carbs rather than man-made Frankenfoods.

Examples of 'unprocessed (or minimally processed) carbs':

Quinoa

Sweet potato

White potato

Brown rice

Butternut Squash

Parsnips

Pumpkin

Fruit (keep minimal)

Possibly some bulgar wheat also, in small amounts.


The most processed carbs are generally the durum wheat and wheat flour-based ones, such as:

Bread

Pasta

Biscuits

Cakes

Wraps

White rice is not wheat-based but is highly processed, with most of the nutritional value stripped out of it.

Partially processed but better than wheat-based ones

Oats (oatcakes, porridge)

These are OK overall, and certainly better than bread and pasta, though they're certainly not perfect either.

All of the unprocessed carbs contain starchy, slow release carbohydrates that will keep you going, without the negative effects of the processed ones. They are all wheat and gluten-free, meaning that you will not get bloated from consuming these, and will not get any blood sugar 'spikes' causing your body to store body fat.

The worst sources of carbs

Processed sugars like cereals, white bread (brown bread is still not good), white pasta, white rice, biscuits and cakes are all the more processed forms of carbohydrate based foods, and these are ones that are piling the pounds on people in the Western World.

So why are they bad?

Blood sugar spikes – when your blood sugar level rockets up, the pancreas releases insulin to combat this. Insulin is the fat-storing hormone, and you will store body fat. You can also develop diabetes type II and energy levels will be up and down throughout the day, with real feelings of lethargy.

They mess with your mind (you will gorge them down), gut (bloating and more serious digestive conditions), hormones (hot flushes, hair growth and even in the wrong places etc) and they cause inflammation (arthritis).

Wheat causes a lot of digestive issues. Some people are highly intolerant to wheat and wheat-based foods, and even meats that are combined with cheap fillers to reduce production costs (e.g. sausages that are 45% pork, with the rest being wheat flour and other fillers).

​Here's what our client, Clare, experienced when reintroducing pasta and burger buns after 9 weeks of eating much healthier options:

Every single person, bar none, that has a weight problem and has come to Rezults, consumes wheat and sugar right throughout the day. You can shed the pounds and inches, get into smaller sized clothes and feel so much more energetic and never feel bloated again, through choosing the unprocessed carb sources only, and avoiding the highly processed ones.

To receive lots of great advice that will get you into smaller clothes, looking and feeling great, enter your details below.

Sugar, Salt, Fat (And Why You're Addicted)

You are genetically hard wired to be attracted to these three things, each for a different reason.

Sugar gives you quick energy, and we evolved on foods that do not provide quick energy. Once we came to discover sugary foods, we became highly attracted to them. But you wouldn't sit and eat a bowl of sugar.

Salt helps you to retain water and brings out the flavour in foods. We didn't have taps around us when we were evolving, so we have evolved to be attracted to salty things for water retention. But you wouldn't sit and dip your finger into a bag of salt and eat it.

Fat gives you sustained energy release. Fat is very dense in calories, which was essential for us in surviving through times of famine while we were evolving. Fat satiates you best of all, and keeps you going for far longer than carbohydrate and protein-based foods. But you wouldn't sit and eat a block of butter, or lard.

Nature never, ever combines these things together. (Except for milk, which has natural sugars – lactose – and fat)

An egg has fat in the yolk, and the best available protein source, but no sugar or salt.

An avocado is pure fat (good fats) and has no sugar or salt.

Nuts have excellent fats, plus protein, but no sugar.

Fish has great fats (omega 3s), but no sugar (though it can naturally beva bit salty if fresh from the sea).

Meats have excellent protein, plus fat on the side of the meat, but no sugar or salt.

Fruit has sugar, but no fat or salt.

Some vegetables have natural sugars, but no fat, or salt.

Food Scientists have tested, many thousands of times over, many combinations of ingredients, and they know all too well the effect that combining sugar, salt and fat has in getting you well and truly hooked on their products. Let's have a look at some examples.

Honey glazed nuts have sugar and salt to combine with the natural fats in the nuts.

Fish has a sauce or glazing, to combine sugar with the natural fats in the fish.

Meats have sauces such as barbecue sauce, sweet and sour sauce or ketchup, to combine sugar with the natural fats.

Ice cream is a mix of sugar and fat.

Nutella is a mix of sugar and fat.

Crisps, Doritos and nachos all combine fats with salt.

Peanut butter has sugar added to it (though you can purchase sugar-free ones) to add to the natural fats, plus salt.

Chocolate/banana/strawberry milk combines added sugar with the natural fats in the milk.

Flavoured yoghurts combine added sugar with the fat (and even more sugar when they are 'low fat' versions)

Sweetened almond or coconut milk has added sugar, to combine with natural fats.

Raisins or other dried fruits combined with nuts, combines condensed sugars with the natural fats in the nuts.

These combinations make foods infinite times more appealing for you, but also extremely addictive. So much so that people are severely harming and even killing themselves because they simply cannot do without these highly processed junk foods.

Food company Product Developers (people whose job it is to come up with new food products for selling) are given a formula to use time and time again for all products. This formula is very specific. It must be 50% fat, 50% sugar and often has a certain amount of salt also. This is very deliberate, and is done to get you hooked on those products. Food sales are highly competitive, and food companies are ruthless in their pursuit of your money. If that means sacrificing your health, then so be it. If that means you being 100% addicted and willing to die for their products, then they do not care. If it means your child being hooked from a young age and spending their life being bullied and covering themselves up at gym class, then they do not care. They only care about getting your money out of your pocket and into theirs.

If you are serious about wanting to change your relationship with food and to beat food addiction, then Rezults offers nutritional education and support, plus accountability, as part of our programmes at no additional charge. You will not receive this with any other fitness company or personal training company in Central Scotland. To start your journey to a happier you in your clothes, where you control what you eat rather than the food controlling you, message today for your free Transformation Session worth £49

The Truth About 'Healthy' Diet Shakes

Here is some valuable education regarding 'healthy' weight loss shakes (you know, the ones that you're going to splash out on in the new year after the festive binge, because they're 'healthy').

Apparently this yummy breakfast drink "contains 30 fruit and vegetables" along with the capsules. Unfortunately, there are some issues with this.

1 - Will this shake satiate you? It's not solid food entering your stomach, so it's highly unlikely to make you feel full. Also, fat is essential to satiate you and to curb cravings and there is likely to be none in the shake. If you're not satiated, you're craving. If you're craving, at some point your caving (into a chocolate or crisps binge).

2 - The digestive process begins with your saliva in your mouth. Even just looking at food (not capsules) causes your saliva to increase, ready to aid with the digestive process. You chew the food to make it more palatable and start digesting via your saliva. At what point does this happen when you throw a shake down your neck, bypassing your mouth in the quickest time possible?

3 - Is there fibre in those capsules? Fructose (fruit sugar) in the absence of fibre is highly damaging to your liver. Perhaps there is a little fibre in there, I don't know, if I'm honest. However, it's highly unlikely to be the right amount of fibre to properly slow the digestion of the fructose.

4 - Is there fat in those capsules or in that drink? Fat is essential for absorbing fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E and K. No fat = no absorption. It's highly unlikely that there is fat in those capsules, because people might not buy it, because fat is bad, right? People are buying this to lose weight, so they're not going to want the fat in there (despite the fact that fat is actually ESSENTIAL).

The truth is that nature gives you everything with exactly the correct balance of fibre to fructose and nutrients at the right levels, plus natural fats to aid absorption. NO SHAKE or SUPPLEMENT WILL EVER be better than what nature provides for us. No matter what the marketing BS tells you.

For proper, honest, no BS nutritional advice, without 'shakes' sales or junk food in vending machines, drop us a message or enter your details below. It might just be the best thing you've ever done (yes, we have clients who tell us that very thing). DT

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About the Author

Derek Thomson is a body transformation specialist, having helped hundreds of clients to become slimmer, fitter, healthier and happier within themselves. He has been exercising himself seriously for 25 years now, and training clients for the last 7 years, having previously been a Physical Training Instructor with the Territorial Army. Derek is more than happy to be judged by the rezults achieved by the clients, and you can see from the before and after pictures on this site, plus the video testimonials, that Rezults produces the best transformations in Central Scotland, bar none.

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