If you are someone who has a very keen interest in diet and fitness or if you have ever tried to lose weight, you must have come across a term ‘calorie deficit’. No it is not another trending diet but a game of calculations which will help you eat right, stay fit and lose wait. So without a further ado let’s dive in and see what calorie deficit is and how it aids weight loss, with inputs from Ryan Fernando, Nutritionist and Food Coach, Practice at QUA NUTRITION CLINICS, and Columnist Sportstar Magazine. He says, “Nutrition is bio-individual. A calorie deficit diet may not work for all. Better do it under the guided supervision of your nutritionist. The body needs calories to function, limiting calories unscientifically can lead to a plethora of health problems like low metabolism, poor immunity, fatigue, low fertility, constipation and compromised sleep health.”
What Are Calories?
Before jumping into calorie deficit let's try to understand what actually these calories are which everyone tells you to burn whenever you tell them that you want to lose weight. If you remember your class 10th science lectures. Calories are nothing complicated but just a unit used to measure energy or the amount of heat needed to increase the temperature of one gram water by one degree celsius. Calories are a way of exchanging energy for our bodies. The food we eat contains energy which is often called calorie, if these calories get excess they start taking the form of body fat which in turn makes you gain weight.
What is a calorie deficit?
Calorie deficit is a technique to be followed whenever going for weight loss. Calorie deficit basically is cutting down calorie intake and exercising in order to burn the extra calories. For a calorie deficit diet the amount of calories which go into your body are less than the amount of calories burnt in a day which means:
How does a calorie deficit help in weight loss?
As the extra calories in our body take up the form of body fat, one needs to burn out those extra calories by exercising, walking, swimming or by the means of any other such physical activity. The fat stored in our body is also a form of energy. When you consume less and burn more calories your body uses the energy stored in your body in the form of fat to help you carry out your day to day activities which aids in weight loss. However depending upon your weight, sex, daily physical activity and other such factors there is a minimum amount of calories you need to keep your body healthy and functioning.
How to create a calorie deficit diet?
To break the concept further into a simpler form here are some suggestions which you can follow to lose weight.
1# Do not eat less but Eat less calories
By cutting down on calories you can create a calorie deficit which is enough to lose weight. Consuming less calories does not mean that you need to starve yourself, you can always opt for food options with less calories.
2# Start Exercising
Wake up you lazy bones! Consuming less calories would not help if you do not exercise so get up and get yourself moving. If you eat enough calories to support yourBMR (Basal Metabolic Rate) and increase your physical activity, you can create a calorie deficit by burning out more calories.
3# Drink water before your meals
Drinking water before your meals can actually aid in weight loss as it will make you feel full and satisfied which in return will help prevent overeating.
“First, define your calorie needs-it depends on Height, weight, age, gender, physical activity, and body composition. The second step is to analyze your current calorie intake and lifestyle. Based on this data and your goals, limited calorie intake can be defined. You can also include negative calorie foods like apples, cucumbers & mushrooms in your diet, which takes away more calories than they give.” suggests Ryan Fernando, Nutritionist and Food Coach, Practice at QUA NUTRITION CLINICS, Columnist Sportstar Magazine.
There can be many different ways of losing weight, but at the end you need to make sure what suits you and your lifestyle the best. In a rush to lose weight and get into a certain kind of body shape one must not compromise with their health. There is no standard rule. It will vary from person to person. Don't buy the numbers, let your nutritionist define it for you.,” concludes Fernando.
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