Not too long ago I asked if you are tracking what you eat. Today I want to take it one step further. This inquiring mind wants to know…
Do you count things when you are dieting or eating healthy? And if so, what? Calories. Or carbs. Or points?
And if you do it, why do you do it? To know when to stop eating? Or to evaluate how much food you can have in a day to lose or maintain? Or do you do it just out of your own sense of curiosity? Or?
If you don’t, why not? And is there another technique you use to help you moderate your eating?
In my many years of dieting experience (she laughs), I have been a counter and count-less. Both with and without weight-loss success. Years ago on Weight Watchers, I was the queen of finding low-point foods. And at various times in my life I have tracked calories, either out of curiosity to see how many I was really taking in, or in an attempt to keep to a limit I set myself to facilitate weight loss. One thing I have never counted is carbs. Yes, I have sometimes been on what some would consider a low-carb diet, but what I would consider a “good” carb diet (South Beach), but the plan does not involve counting or limiting carbs.
Part of the reason for me asking all of you is that I am still in my ongoing process of questioning my approach to eating healthy. And wondering if maybe the time has come to pay a bit more attention to the whole mathematics of calories in vs. calories out. Which, of course, requires me to track calories. And while, at least for me, there are several disadvantages and deterrents to that whole process, there are several potential positives as well. And I have to say that I am not sure the math always works. (More on that coming soon in another post.) But there surely is something to be said for taking in less calories than I am burning off. For taking in less calories period!
When I started my tracking last week, I tried out some online systems that readers recommended and, no surprise, each one tracks calorie count. Whether you want to or not! It has been a bit of a revelation. For many reasons. Like how fast the calories add up. And how very careful I need to be if I want to cut back a bit. And that I take in an awful lot of snack calories compared to meal calories, although that is not really a surprise to this over-snacker. Tracking calories has made me think more about what I am putting in my mouth and that is a good thing. So, for now, count me in…decisive.
Your turn to weigh in. Counter or countless? And why?