I am never good at managing things that involve numbers even though I used to score good marks for my mathematics (Secondary School Level that is).
Right now, when it comes to financial management and weight management, I would rather poke a bee hive than writing down the exact amount of what comes in and what goes out. Counting calories is not just my cup of tea.
Because for me, it’s never an easy feat, there are no constant variables to take note of. In a week I can eat as many as 5-7 meals a day and the next week after that, I might only have 1-2 meals.
Same thing for my financial expenditure.
Then again, I never got broke or fat. Why? Because I AM LEEEGEENN…..wait fooor iiiiit… DAARRRYYY. (Ahhh I just love Barney Stinson)
I’m kidding, I sure need to start saving soon!!
If you are like me, you just hate scrutinizing with the details, then you shouldn’t be spending too much time counting calories or jotting down every cent you spend on something.
I will share with you how fit, strategic, and healthy people stay lean without troubling themselves with unnecessary details.
The Impossible Calorie Counting
Seriously, do you even bother counting calorie?
Balancing our finance is hard enough, isn’t it?
Don’t waste your precious brain cells and valuable time. Counting calories is not accurate to begin with.
You have to find out the actual calories from websites, handbooks, more books and more research.
What now? You need to be like some mad scientist before you finally figure out “Ahhh..that fishcake I ate had 56.7 kcal if it is grill with light butter 10% transfat”
If you love complicating things and making it all technical and sciencey then go ahead.
Not only that,
- Not everyone knows how to read food labels.
- Estimating our BMR or calorie requirement per day comes with another 25% error depending on the equipment you are using.
- It’s troublesome to measure with cups all the time.
- It’s even more bothersome to put them on notes and to calculate calories before and after meals.
- The need to use different apps to track these “almost” accurate numbers just add more task to whatever things you are already having trouble doing.
I’ll skip all of these. Period.
Weight Management Explain
Ok, allow me to use a little bit of calorie terms.
Like I explained earlier, when we eat the same amount of calorie and we do the same amount or types of activities in a day, we will achieve homeostasis. It is when energy from food is equals to energy the body used for the activities we performed in a day.
The Rule of Thumb will apply to every one of us.
Now one way to get this “Rule of Thumb” theory simplified and to make it more practical is to observe our weight and what we have been eating for the past week every day.
There can only be 3 normal cases.
- You have been eating like you used to and your weight stays the same.
- You have been having more appetite than usual and your weight started to increase.
- You are so busy these days, you can barely eat a full meal and you are losing weight and energy.
If you are not one of the above then you are dealing with some other complications. We will talk about that in another article.
Alternative To Calorie Counting
What if I tell you that you can totally manage your weight without using any apps, calculator or with no numbers involved? (maybe a little bit)
Yup, it is all about taking matters into your own hands, literally.
Here how it works:
- Your palm determines your protein portions.
- Your fist determines your veggie portions.
- Your cupped hand determines your carb portions.
- Your thumb determines your fat portions.
I would say many of us are not consuming enough proteins. Most food stalls, home-cooked food, and even fast food restaurants would only provide high-carb, high salt or high sugar meals.
We underestimate the amount of protein we need, and we do not see the beneficial effects of having high protein for every meal.
Unless your normal diet consists of big chunks of meat, then that is fine as long as it is prepared healthily.
Protein-based meals are digested slower than carb-based meals. They provide a feeling of being full longer, but we tend to have less of meat because it is expensive.(1)
Generally, men should have 2 portion of meat in a meal. As we are more muscular built compare to the ladies.
For cheap source of protein, you can always try these:
- Whole eggs: 7-8g of protein/egg
- Ground beef: 25g of protein/100g. 80% lean is fine, as long as you rinse the fats.
- Whole chicken:24g of protein/3oz. Go for chicken breast and thighs.
- Whey protein supplement: 24g protein/30g serving. At 2 scoops/day, a 10lbs bag will last 10 weeks.
- Milk: 30g of protein/lire. Unless you have lactose intolerant or you can’t stop purging out foul gases, then skip this or try with rice/almod milk.
Everybody’s favorite main dish!! I’m kidding.
For vegetables, you can spam them as much as you want in my view. It is low in calorie, high in fiber and filled with vitamins, minerals and other useful contents.
I don’t think anyone can devour vegetables to the point of affecting the body weight.
But, generally 2 fists of veggies per meal hits the jackpot.
Top veggies are:
Some of you may go, “This must be a joke”
Not really. There are such things as healthy fats.
By the way, fats don’t make you fat, (though it may increase your chances of cancer, heart disease and other chronic conditions) sedentary lifestyle, imbalanced diet as well as genetic predisposition are the causes of obesity.(2)
Our bodies needs fat for a lot of things including losing fats. Yes, we need fat to lose fat. You can read more about it here.
For a start ensure that you have two thumb size of fats in your meal.
Healthy fat sources:
- Fatty fish: Salmon, Mackerel, Herring
- Olive oil, Canola oil, Coconut Oil
- Chia seeds and nuts
Many of us are always filled with carbohydrates. When our stomach rumbles and growls, we seek food that makes us feel full. Usually high-carb food.
French fries, Patties, Bread and Rice are staples for most cultures.
But, the things is, our body only need a certain amount of carbohydrate to function properly and effectively while in truth, most of us are feeding it with excess carbs.
That is when we start to see weight gain.
The choices of our carbohydrate sources are another reason we find the need to keep eating and refilling. Refined carbs are just making us hungrier without giving the body what it really needs – Balanced Nutrients.
It is advisable to have two thumb size of any of these better choices of carbs source:
- Wild Rice, Brown Rice, Brasmati Rice, Amaranth, Quinoa
- Wholemeal bread
- Sweet and normal potato
- Whole fruits: apples, bananas, strawberries
It may be hard at the beginning to change your main source of food suddenly. For me and family, we start of by mixing brasmati rice with the normal short-grain white rice and slowly we are now taking in brasmati rice.
Which is of course not as good as brown or wild rice, but it is a start.
For ladies, your recommended servings is to have half of what is required for Men.
Adjusting Your Food Intake Accordingly
Difference in body type
We all know some of us are born with different shapes and sizes. It plays an important role in the way you adjust your meal portions as well.
I will discuss more about it in the upcoming article.
Counting calories may work for some, but for those who are less likely to research the encyclopedia of foods every single time you munch on something, then portion control is always the best alternative.
All you have to do is understand what is the food made up off. If it is mostly protein like meat then follow as what was explained above. Same thing for the other types of food.
Get used to eating less or more according to your body weight goals. It will take a lot of dicipline, sacrifices and support from those around you.
The important thing is to keep it consistent and at your own comfortable pace.