When it comes to losing weight and getting in shape, one of the most difficult facets of the entire process is developing and maintaining healthy eating habits. For the most part, excessive weight gain is attributed to taking in too many calories on a regular basis in the form of food and drinks.
When you come to think of it, those two categories encompass a wide range of items that are often tossed into the body without a second thought. The potato chips, cupcakes, sodas, bowls of ice cream, cookies and crackers, not to mention those enormous combo meals you find at nearly every fast food restaurant. All of this tack on hundreds, if not thousands of calories that do nothing beneficial for the body.
If your priority is to lose weight and you haven’t had much success with this in the past, one of the best ways to really combat this issue is to keep track of the amount of calories you are eating on a daily basis.
Do You Know How Many Calories You Ate Today? Here’s How To Find Out
Food is our fuel and our bodies need a certain amount of fuel each day, but that amount varies depending on our age, gender, body type, and daily activity level. In other words, a 5 foot 100 pound 35 year old woman with a sedentary life will need far less fuel than a 6’3 220 pound 21 year old male with an active lifestyle.
Therefore in order to find out what your daily calorie amount should be, you can speak to a nutritionist/dietician however depending on your insurance you may need to get a referral from your primary care physician first. Another option is you can use one of the online charts in order to get a basic ballpark average. Even if the amount is not entirely precise and accurate, a 100-200 calorie cushion is not all that bad. Here are two places to start to know how many calories you should eat daily:
Once you know how many calories to strive for, you can then use one of the many free calorie counting apps for smartphones to help you track and tally up your nutrition each day. If you do not have a phone capable of running apps, you can always use the desktop or laptop versions of the calorie counters (also free).
What makes these tools so valuable is the fact that not only do they keep a running total each day of all the food and beverages you consume, but they also have the nutritional breakdown of millions of items in their database. This way you usually never have to research to figure out how many calories are in what you’re eating. You simply input the name of the food, select the result that matches along with the number of servings consumed, and your daily tally is tabulated. Literally takes 10 seconds to input an item.
For instance, using the free MyFitnessPal app, after inputting a Western Bacon Cheeseburger from the fast food spot Carls Jr., you find that it’s 730 calories. A steak XXL Grilled Stuft burrito from Taco Bell is 880 calories, and a large order of french fries from McDonalds by themselves are 510 calories.
You can see from these examples how hefty fast food is and why eating these types of foods regularly will put you over your daily calorie allowance rather easily. If you’re curious to know what you are currently consuming, check out what your favorite snacks and drinks calorie totals are and you may be surprised with the results.
If solely for inspiration and motivation, these calorie counting apps can really help you focus on maintaining an appropriate amount of food. Repeating this effort continually and you will find yourself losing weight and creating a healthier life.
Imagine how much weight you would lose if you combine healthy eating practices with a regular exercise routine. A whole new life will emerge and you will soon look back on your “old” way of living and shake your head in amazement at how far things have now come. And much of this focused motivation may be thanks to using a free calorie counter.
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