What are good calories and why is it important to differentiate them from bad ones

What are good calories and why is it important to differentiate them from bad ones


The obsession with the word “calorie” can sometimes reach unsuspected levels. More than one carefully analyzes the caloric load of each food that it consumes to calculate its possible impact on the body.

The issue is that calories are usually associated directly with the weight, or rather, the overweight that affects the body, either because they are consumed in excess or because nothing is done to burn them.

People doing exercises
Copyright of the GETTY IMAGES imageImage caption Exercising is a way to burn calories, although that does not mean you’re losing weight. The key is food.

A perception that is not entirely correct, as told to Rava by health specialist, professor at the sports and fitness science center High Performance.

“The fear that there is does not make sense and it should not be like that,” Specialist explained.

“The kilocalorie is energy after all, an energy that our body needs to functionduring the day, the problem is excess and what is the source of that excess”.

To avoid

The Spanish professor refers to kilocalorie, which is the one that is linked to the nutritional aspect of food and to which the American chemist Wilbur O. Atwater makes mention as Calorie, with the first letter in capital letters.

Good and bad food
Copyright of the ELENABS imageImage caption There are foods that are best avoided and others whose consumption is important to maintain good health.

But not all kilocalories are the same and hence the differentiation between those that are good for the organism and the bad ones is important.

It is not the same that provide the proteins to which carbohydrates provide and that is why it is necessary to enter the concept of macronutrients: protein, fat or lipids and carbohydrates or sugars,” said Marco.

“The worst are those found in sugars of rapid absorption, which for each gram provide four kilocalories that if not consumed quickly will accumulate, ie, fattening.”

Person showing his abdominal fat
Copyright of the GETTY IMAGES imageImage caption Weight is not the only indication that a person is healthy.

In this group are sweets, soft drinks or soft drinks and even fruit and dairy, which has a type of sugar that is not convenient to abuse if not consumed quickly.

For the High Performance teacher there is a problem of misinformation and generalization.

” Not all fats are bad, ” specialist clarified.

“With the saturated ones, you have to be careful, especially of animal origin, which produces nine kilocalories per gram.”

The types of fats that produce positive calories for the body can be found in foods with vegetable oil, nuts or fish such as salmon, tuna or mackerel.

Man climbing stairs
Copyright of the GETTY IMAGES imageImage caption A dose of good calories can increase exercise performance.

And like fats, you can not generalize with carbohydrates, because there are slow absorption, which are beneficial to the body.

“Rice, cereals or legumes will provide you with the same four calories per gram, but those with slow absorption allow the body to metabolize and assimilate them in a more progressive manner and therefore do not run the risk of gaining weight.”

Matter of percentages

One way to see which foods we consume from that offer us the possibility of eating good calories is by observing their nutritional composition .

“You have to flee from the fast sugars,” warns specialist.

“You see it where it says the amount of carbohydrates and of them, how much percentage refers to sugars, the same thing happens with fats, that if they have a high percentage of saturated ones, you have to avoid it”.

Nutrition label
Copyright of the GETTY IMAGES imageImage caption Food labels specify the amounts of carbohydrate and fat it contains, in addition to how much sugars and saturated it is.

Something that is also recommended to avoid is alcohol “that are very bad and empty kilocalories “.

“The problem is that they are on average seven kilocalories per gram and it does not provide nutrients, if you add that it is made from cereals and sugars are added, we are talking about a caloric excess that makes it very dangerous for the body.”

Finally, the Spanish professor stressed that taking into account that it is best to balance the diet based on foods that provide good calories, do not exaggerate the amount consumed, since the levels vary in terms of characteristics of each person.

“With a standard biotype, a person who exercises moderately three times a week and with a level of sedentary lifestyle that is considered normal is recommended a consumption of 1,800 calories a day for women and 2,200 for men, ” he recalled.

After that, it is about each person adding and subtracting according to their diet and lifestyle.

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