What You Eat Does Matter: Quality Counts

New Study Supports Concept of Good Calories, Bad Calories

In an article published this month in the New England Journal of Medicine, researchers revealed the results of a 20-year study on more than 120,000 Americans. Weight gain was “most strongly associated” with eating refined carbohydrates and processed foods, including potato chips, sugar-sweetened beverages and processed meats. Imagine that: junk food makes you fat. (No kidding!)

On the flip side, weight loss was associated with eating whole foods – such as vegetables, fruits and nuts. Weight loss was also associated with physical activity (exercise!) and other lifestyle factors, such as getting plenty of sleep.

After decades of support for the old “calories in, calories out” model, it is great to see substantive evidence supporting the fact that we need to focus more on the quality of the food we consume and worry less about the quantity. Too many diets are based on calorie restriction – or restriction of certain foods or food groups (e.g., fat) – which inevitably backfires. In fact, dieting makes you fat.

Interested in learning more?   

If you would like a copy of an article I wrote, “Why dieting makes you fat,” leave a comment below or “like” Envisioning Health on FaceBook. I will email it to you.

Check out Gary Taubes’ (author of Good Calories, Bad Calories) new book: Why We Get Fat: And what to do about it. It’s available in bookstores.

Here’s the citation for the publication: Mozaffarian, D et al. (2011). Changes in diet and lifestyle and long-term weight gain in women and men. N Engl J Med. 364(25):2392-404. The abstract can be found here: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21696306

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About Susan MacLaughlin

A health & wellness coach and workshop leader, Susan empowers people to take charge of their health.
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