NutriNews Issue 7 2017 - Page 20

Losing weight in the pursuit of the ‘perfect body’ can lead to drastic lifestyle changes. The first serious concern in counting calories resides in the potential to develop a harmful obsessiveness. What may start as a general indicator of consumption can gradually become a daunting number that we fear to see increasing throughout the day. Contingent on the individual, this fear can then lead to mental instability, especially when the focus stems on striving for that fantasized body. Finally, the inevitable obsession. When obsession consumes the mind, rationalizations are made for certain eating disorders. Thoughts of anorexia and bulimia gradually become more appealing. Taking such extreme actions compels a person to emphasize their focus on appearance over health, which results in adverse physical, emotional, and mental effects. Many of the initial reasons of dieting, such as ameliorating stress and building self-esteem, are worsened through obsessive calorie counting. The second major issue in calorie-counting dwells in compromising food quality. ‘A calorie is not a calorie’. Depending on one’s perspective, this statement can have completely different interpretations. Yes, it is true that one calorie contains 4184 Joules of energy, sure. But when considering the physiological effects on the body, the simplicity of that definition becomes lost. Conditional on choice, different foods go through various biochemical pathways that can have distinct beneficial or adverse outcomes. Compromising food quality for the purpose of aͱȁ͕ᥕˊd(ɽݥٔɔѥٔѡͥѥٔ́)ѡ丁!հɥѥ́́ɔ)ѕݡͽ䁙ͥɥ̸ɽͥ)͡ձɥѥ́مՔ́́ɕ)ɕѥ͡ݥѠѠ)%Ք́9ɥѥٕѡ