Why I Don’t Count Calories Anymore

Hi!  Welcome back.  Ready for another round of my eating for the day?  I hope so.  I also have a topic I really wanted to discuss.  Calories.  And calorie counting.  I used to use MyFitnessPal.  Guilty.  I would track my nutrition intake diligently daily and be ecstatic when my calories were under the projected ‘calorie goal’ set for my body.  Today, I have been calorie-counting free for a little over 1 year and will never go back to counting calories.  Why?  Let’s discuss…

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breakfast//Salted caramel smoothie (1 frozen banana, 1 cup unsweetened almond milk, 1/2 scoop whipped vanilla ProZero plant based protein, caramel extract, sea salt, ice and xantham gum), 1 whole grain Eggo waffle, 1 slice Ezekiel toast, 2 Tbsp peanut butter, real raspberry preserves

1. Calorie counting made me choose low calorie foods and foods that had a nutrition label vs nutrient dense filling foods.  Ie Eating a nutrition bar instead of a green smoothie. Or eating PB2 instead of real peanut butter.  Now I look at a food and think “Will this fill me up?”  and “Will this make me feel good?”.   Usually, if it won’t, I won’t eat it even if it is ‘low calorie’.

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lunch//2 slices Alvarado St. bakery flax bread, avocado, Trader Joe’s mahi mahi burger, side of broccoli (ate the whole pile before this)

2. I started using a food scale and REALLY understanding portion sizes vs logging foods and thinking I was eating a set amount.  This was huge for me.  I would undereat carbs and overeat nut butters.  I would go hours without eating.  I would restrict foods.  I finally buy all foods because all foods can fit into my diet.  Learning portions and how to fuel my body correctly was the best thing I could have done.

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protein power bowl//HEB brand plain greek yogurt mixed with vanilla stevia and frozen overnight, 1/2 banana, peanut butter Panda puffs, mini chocolate chips, 1 Smores PopTart, homemade chocolate sauce (Hershey’s dark cocoa, water, vanilla stevia)

3. I became confident in my food choices and don’t have to double check that I ate the perfect amount.  Counting calories at this point in my journey would just be repetitive.  I use a carb, protein, and fat exchange system and eyeballing portions to understand my meals and I don’t care what the calories are.  At all.  I care more about if I am getting a good source of each of the macronutrients with more carbs around my workouts and more fats if I am not going to eat for awhile.

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dinner// Wafflewhich made with 1 egg cooked in coconut oil and topped with sea salt, melted mozzarella cheese (added to waffles while in the toaster oven), and raspberry jelly all sandwiched between 2 whole grain “Nutrigrain” Eggo waffles. Also had a huge pile of roasted broccoli slaw for dat FIBER.

SP

dessert//1 hugh-ass sweet potato, peanut butter, ff reddi whip and 2 Lindt cookies and cream chocolates melted on top

Not worrying about calories can be scary.  Heck, I logged my nutrition intake pretty regularly for probably 3-4 YEARS before I finally stopped!  What have I learned from not calorie counting?  How to make all foods fit, how to listen to my body, and how to understand nutrients instead of just calories.  And you know what?  I am never going back.

And most recent progress pictures (for myself, mostly):

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