Understanding The Calorie BalanceBy Sarah S – Jenny Craig
When it comes to maintaining a healthy weight or losing weight, the bottom line is calorie count! Losing weight may seem complicated, but it really comes down to this: take in fewer calories than your body uses or “burns off” every day. Following your Jenny Menu as you increase your physical activity can tip the scales in your favor.
Weight Loss: A Matter of Balance
Picture calorie balance like an old-fashioned scale. On one side is your total calories in (from food and beverages), and on the other side is the number of calories your body uses (in normal body functions, daily activities and physical activity).
The Energy Balance Equation looks like this:
Calories in = Jenny Menu + other
foods/drinks you consume
Calories out = Resting Metabolism and
Your intention will determine where you want your caloric balance to be.
|If your goal is to....||Your caloric balance should be....|
|Maintain your weight||In balance -- you’re consuming roughly the same number of calories that your body is using.|
|Lose weight||In caloric deficit -- you’re consuming fewer calories than your body is using.|
|Gain weight||In caloric excess -- you’re consuming more calories than your body is using.|
Calories In: Eat Well
A calorie is defined as a unit of energy supplied by food. A calorie is a calorie regardless of its source. Whether you are consuming carbohydrates, fats, sugars, protein or even alcohol, all of them contain calories. Although water, vitamins and minerals are essential nutrients, they do not contain any calories. To simplify calorie control, you have the benefit of pre-portioned meals as part of a low-fat, calorie-reduced menu. When you are in weight loss mode, you’re consuming fewer calories than your body is using. Your body is pulling from fat storage cells for energy, so your weight is decreasing.
Calories Out: Move More
Your body is always burning calories because calories are used to create the energy that your body needs to function. Everything you do requires calories -- breathing, pumping blood, moving, speaking, thinking and even digesting food.
The amount of energy your body burns when you are at rest is called your resting metabolism. Resting metabolism is determined by your gender, height, weight, age and body composition. It is usually higher in men, due to a higher percentage of muscle, which naturally burns more calories. Resting metabolism may decrease with age, due to muscle loss over time and decreased activity. It may also decrease as you lose weight because a smaller body requires fewer calories. Your body also burns calories through physical activity. When combined with eating less, calories burned from activity can make a big difference in weight loss and maintenance.
Your Weight Loss Calorie Level
When you completed your profile online or started your journey with a consultant, your resting metabolism was calculated using your height, weight, age, gender of calories you need to lose weight in a healthy way. There may be days when you are under a little, and more often, a little over -- that’s okay. Become aware of your “calories in” by tracking the foods you eat and the beverages you drink each day. To monitor your “calories out” from exercise, use the online activity tracker. Be sure to track the physical activity you do and the length of time you do it. and activity level. This created a weight loss calorie level personalized just for you. Consider this number your baseline calorie level -- the amount
As a reference, approximately 3,500 calories results in one pound of body weight. So, if you reduce your caloric intake by 500 every day, in a week (500 calories x 7 days = 3500 calories/week), you’d typically lose one pound. You don’t have to worry about doing the math since your weight loss calorie level has been calculated for you. If you follow your weight loss calorie level and boost your physical activity, you may achieve a weight loss of approximately one to two pounds per week.
Sticking close to your calorie level while you increase your activity can tip the scales in your favor. The beauty of this equation is that you can still lose weight, even if you want to enjoy a splurge like a glass of wine or a brownie. All you need to do is burn some extra calories through exercise to keep you in a caloric deficit.