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Why Counting Calories Doesn’t Work + What to Do Instead

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Counting calories doesn’t work; it’s a waste of time and counting calories can even make you fat. Lose weight + reach optimal health by doing this instead.

Counting calories doesn't work; it's a waste of time and counting calories can even make you fat. Lose weight + reach optimal health by doing this instead.

“Oh this is healthy, it only has 100 calories per bag.”

“I eat healthy, I have a protein shake for breakfast, Lean Cuisine for lunch and a granola bar for a snack.”

“Oh I couldn’t eat that on my diet, it’s got so much fat. I always buy low-fat or fat-free milk, cheese and yogurt.”

Any of this sound familiar?

Unfortunately, there are still millions of people out there who think calories and fat are the enemy, when in reality good fats (those rich in omega-3s, like salmon, avocados, olive oil and nuts and seeds), should be a cornerstone of a healthy diet.

Did you know Omega-3 fatty acids have been linked to an increase in lean mass and a decrease in body fat stores?

So that whole fat makes you fat thing….NOT true. Eating plenty of the right fats will actually help your waistline!

And counting calories? Yeah, it’s stupid. There I said.

Counting calories doesn’t work. Counting calories is a waste of your time and energy. And in fact, counting calories just might be making you fat.

Because guess what? When you eat an anti-inflammatory diet based in real food, you don’t need to count calories.

RELATED:  Ultimate Guide: What is Real Food?

Think about it–nobody is getting fat off eating too many apples and avocados or boatloads of spinach or even too much wild-caught seafood. Nope. Nobody!

Why? Well let’s get into that right here and now.

Counting calories doesn't work; it's a waste of time and counting calories can even make you fat. Lose weight + reach optimal health by doing this instead.

Why You Should Stop Counting Calories NOW!

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Counting calories doesn't work; it's a waste of time and counting calories can even make you fat. Lose weight + reach optimal health by doing this instead.

how to stop counting calories and still lose weight

When you nourish your body with nutrient-dense foods, listening to what it needs and fueling it with that, you’ll start to feel amazing. And if you can take it a step further and eat a hormonally-nourishing diet, you will even start to lose any excess weight. Take a look:

So, what do you think? Convinced? Do you, or have you in the past, count calories? Will you change your ways now? I’d love to hear your thought, so be sure to comment below!

Photo Credit: Heidi Geldhauser

Disclaimer: This post includes affiliate links, and I will earn a commission if you purchase through these links. Please note that I've linked to these products purely because I recommend them and they are from companies I trust. There is no additional cost to you.

Kate Kordsmeier

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7 comments on “Why Counting Calories Doesn’t Work + What to Do Instead”

  1. I’ve got one question. In general the more you’re curious you’re about what you eat the better for your health. Why don’t apply that curiosity on both? I mean on one side to check healthy and well balanced food and on the other side – to check also total energy you’re providing to your body? In other words – assume you’re eating healthy food – let’s say 3000kcal per day for month. And for the second month you’ll just eat the same food but doubled. Definitely it’s not the same for body. So why don’t take that energy (I e. Kcal) to your consideration? 😉

    • I try to stay curious and open–I’m definitely a researcher!–but I do my best to listen to my body and simply eat healthy, whole foods that I know are nourishing and work with my body’s needs. I trust that when I feel good and balanced, that my body is getting what I need, and I feel that is all that really matters.

  2. What a great read. I have this pinned on my Pnterest. I have struggled for years with finding a healthy relationship with food. This article will help me on that journey. Thanks so much.


  3. Thank you for sharing your journey, I really enjoyed the article on the anti-inflammatory foods.

    This article interested me as i started counting calories in August, it helped me understand food better and I have lost 16kg’s so far. But my approach is as you say more real/ healthy food, less junk food. I don’t use it to see how I can “cheat”, I use it as a tool to making better choices.

    I agree counting calories doesn’t work for everyone. My husband tried it and he would eat plenty during the day and then after supper he would see that he still had loads of calories left for the day and would go looking for snacks. After a week or so he deleted the app 🙂

    I don’t believe in diets, I do believe in self-control.

    • I think it’s awesome that you’ve got a better understanding of food now, Aynsley! And congrats on your weight loss. I totally agree that counting calories can often lead to “cheating” just because you can. I much prefer intuitive eating, listening to your body, nourishing it with nutrient-dense real food. I actually don’t really believe in self-control because when your body’s systems are out of whack, it’s impossible. Instead, I believe in getting more of the good into your diet so your body can return to homeostasis and “self-control” becomes natural, rather than forced. I hope that helps! 🙂

  4. Your information is so important. I found you through IG. I signed up for your emails immediately.
    Your delivery is not preachy just down to earth sharing of facts.
    I tell so many people about root and revel.
    Please keep.up the good work.
    Thank you

    • Oh my gosh, wow, Laura. Thank you SO much for the kind words. You just totally made my day, my week!! So glad to have you in the R+R community! 🙂