You Need to Know about Calories/Kilojoules
Lots of great tips and
advice to help you lose that weight.
(Go Back to Weight Loss
think of them as the enemy, the part of food that prevents
weight loss and deposits itself on the thighs. Food packages
list calorie content per serving. You can track your calorie
intake with computer software and counter books. Calorie
information overload can turn eating into a numbers game instead
of a pleasurable part of daily life.
calories both define the energy value of food. Calorie is still
used in the USA to define energy, but Australia now uses
kilojoule and you'll find this term shortened to kJ on food
labels. The measurement of 'calories' signifies the amount of
chemical energy that may be released as heat when food is
metabolised. One calorie is equivalent to 4.2 kilojoules.
between our energy intake versus the energy we expend is the
main reason for weight loss or weight gain. Too many kJ eaten
spells too much body fat on you. Too few kilojoules causes body
Approximately two-thirds of your daily kJ needs are needed to
just run your body as though you were asleep - to keep the blood
pumping, your heart beating, your brain and nerves firing, your
lungs breathing, and for the repair and maintenance of all your
body's cells. This is called the "basal metabolic rate".
The truth is everyone needs some calories every day. Unless you
are a highly trained athlete, your biggest daily calorie cost is
something called Resting Metabolic Rate, or RMR, the calories
you need just to exist. Breathing, heart beat, cell metabolism,
kidney function and even thinking and dreaming use calories.
Muscle cells use calories even when at rest. Eating and
digesting food, standing, sitting, talking and surfing the
Internet all burn calories beyond the basic RMR requirement.
Calorie is a term for the energy content of food. Some food is
very dense in energy, like butter or vegetable oil. Some has
much less, like celery or cucumbers. . Unlike cars, humans donít
have limited fuel tanks. We have expandable fuel tanks called
fat cells. Also unlike cars, we can ramp up our daily calorie
use by adding physical activity.
individual calorie use
Itís not easy to come up with an accurate number for your
individual calorie needs. There are mathematical equations that
attempt to estimate calorie needs based on simple body
measurements, such as gender, age, height and weight. But
equations have limitations. Research shows that most are off by
anywhere from 5% to 25% when used to predict a personís basic
calorie requirement. If you are trying to plan a reduced calorie
diet, itís not helpful if the equation overestimates your basic
needs by 25%.
Move more to burn more
Physical activity not only burns calories, but helps you burn
extra calories all day, even when youíre not exercising. Active
people have more muscle than sedentary people. Muscle tissue has
higher calorie needs even at rest than fat tissue. This is an
excellent reason to include exercise in your daily routine.
Those who exercise, or have a job requiring physical energy,
have a higher basal metabolic rate and thus burn more
kilojoules. For example a sedentary office worker may use about
9000kj per day, a manual worker lifting materials may burn
approximately 12500kj per day, and a labourer or elite athlete
may use up to 17000kj per day.
To know your calorie intake is to monitor your weight. If
your weight is stable, youíre eating the same amount of calories
you burn. If you want to lose weight - you have to eat less than
that amount or burn more with exercise.