The Importance and Fundamentals of Calorie Tracking

Author: Alex DeSilva

There is a lot of confusion about what a calorie is, where they come from and how it actually effects you. If you don’t know how they work, then you’re not alone. Many people misunderstand how calories work and just how easily weight loss can be impacted by the calories you consume.  If you’re wondering why calories matter, here’s a quick overview of how your body uses them.

Food is where your body gets the calories it needs to function. During digestion, your body breaks down the foods you eat into smaller units. Calories is the amount of energy required to break down that food you consume. Your body naturally uses the calories you consume in metabolic processes such as functioning of organs, circulation and breathing. The remainder of the calories you get from foods fuel your physical activity. This includes both your everyday tasks and your workouts. Therefore, the total number of calories needed to cover this category can vary from day to day and person to person

If an individual is in a calorie deficit (meaning they are burning more calories than they are consuming) the body will turn to other means for fuel. For most cases this “fuel source” will be an individuals fat and glycogen stores. However, if an individual is in a calorie surplus (meaning they are consuming more calories than they are burning) this excess amount of energy will be stored in the body as either easily accessible glycogen which can be used immediately or fat stores.

Depending on your goals, whether an individual is wanting to bulk and build strength or cut down and burn fat. Calorie counting is very beneficial if you are wanting to take your goals seriously. Before deciding whether to lose weight or bulk up, it is recommended that you take a test to workout your total daily caloric intake. Before starting any new diet, Medical advice should be taken from a qualified nutritionist or general practitioner