Calorie Inflation: The Slippery Slope

Like the rest of us, you’re struggling to keep your weight under control. “I can’t eat the way I could twenty years ago”. You’ve heard people say this? I have. Then most times, somebody will blame the aging process. While its true that your metabolic rate slows a little as you age, there is another shocking truth that explains this sad phenomenon.

Here’s the truth. Portion sizes have grown dramatically over the past 20 years! In some cases, they have tripled! So if you happily ate a modest turkey sandwich each day for lunch at the corner deli 20 years ago, without putting on weight, know that the calorie load of your lunch has more than doubled since then. It has increased 2.6 times to be precise! Data shared by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) expose this horrendous reality. The data in the table below show the calorie content of some common foods 20 years ago and the massively inflated calorie content of the same food today. Both portion size and calorie density have increased.

Chart

The only way to counter this trend is awareness and discipline. BodyWHealth Golden Rule #2 recommends that you Count Calories. Awareness of your daily caloric need, and the caloric load of each meal and snack will take you a long way to preventing a proportional gain in your weight! Golden Rule #3 calls for No Excuses. Although it takes some effort, we can continue to eat a reasonably sized meal, even if the portions continue to rise. It takes ruthless self-discipline, otherwise our weight gain will detract from our WHealth. Finally, Golden Rule #4 advocates for Healthy Habits. Eating patterns are habitual. Understand the science of habit, and use it to build BodyWHealth!

Have fun,

Roddy

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