What does eating healthy to lose weight mean? What precisely is meant by “healthy”? How can eating healthy lose weight?
Let’s examine the fundamentals of eating healthy to lose weight:
To start with, let us ask ourselves
Why do we need to eat?
The answer I think is pretty obvious – we need to eat to replace the energy that we use in our day to day activity. Once we understand this concept, we should ask ourselves the question, what would happen if we eat more than necessary to replace the energy that was utilized… So,
What happens when we over-eat?
Again, the answer is a no-brainer – the excess food is converted into fat and stored in various locations. Excess consumption over a period of time would therefore lead to obesity.
What does our body need?
To stay healthy and fulfill various needs of our body, we need to ensure it receives adequate quantities of proteins, vitamins, minerals, fiber and yes, fats. In short, our body needs a balanced diet.
Eating healthy to lose weight therefore means:
- We need to eat only that much food that is necessary to replace energy that was utilized
- We need to eat a balanced diet
- When food that is eaten is converted into energy, that energy needs to be utilized either through daily activity or through exercise otherwise we accumulate fats
Now you are probably bursting to ask me how you would know how much food to eat. The answer is quite simple. Energy derived from food is measured in calories and there are many websites that will calculate the calories from the food you eat.
Our body needs an average 2000 calories of food per day. If you are very active e.g. participate in athletics, or undertake body building exercises or work with your muscles at a construction site, then your food intake would have to be higher. How much higher would depend on how much energy you are expanding in your daily activity. Extremely active people are rarely obese so let us ignore this category and limit ourselves to the obese people.
So again, eating healthy to lose weight = eating a balanced diet.
and the calories derived from this diet should not exceed 2,000 per day. Additionally, I would also recommend that you perform 300 calories worth of exercises each day. This will lead to a 300 calorie energy deficit and the body will make up for it by converting 300 calories of stored fat into energy. Your energy deficit however, should not drop below 300 calories per day otherwise instead of converting fat into energy, your body might convert proteins, i.e. muscle into energy which will make your physical appearance very odd.
Read also the post about different food groups keeping us healthy.