What are calories?

We hear about calories and kilojoules just about every time we visit a health site, the supermarket and even on TV adverts 지아 나쁜버릇 다운로드. Just what are they, and why do we constantly want to burn them? Let’s find out!

A calorie isn’t a physical thing, it’s a measurement of energy. So, one calorie is one unit of energy. If you pick up a packet of sweets and look at the back, you’ll see a calorie count. If it says 400 calories, then you’ll get 400 units of energy when you eat it. The only difference in South Africa, is that we don’t use ‘calories’ to measure our energy intake, we use kilojoules. It’s similar to the difference between lbs and kilograms or miles and kilometres. However, the number of kJ (kilojoules) is different to calories. One calorie is 4.2kJ, so if you want to find out the kJ count of something, multiply the calorie count by 4.2.

Why do we want to burn them?

Many people pick up weight simply because they eat more than they need to. If you eat too many calories, and don’t use them by exercising or performing day-to-day tasks, then that leftover energy is stored as fat. Monitoring your calorie intake is a good way to keep your weight in check, but it could also become an obsession. So what’s the best way? You lose weight by reconverting the fat into energy, and you can do this by exercising 3 days a week and eating a moderate, healthy and balanced diet.

Where do you find calories?

Read  What’s that in my food?

If it’s food, there are calories in it. Everything edible, and even inedible, contains energy. The calorie content of a food item depends on what it is. There are usually more calories in food high in carbohydrates and sugar – that’s why you shouldn’t eat cake every day.

How many calories do I need to eat?

The biggest mistake people make is believing that they need to work off all the calories they eat. Your body actually needs calories, or energy, to operate, so if you burn it all, you’ll be starving your body. Here’s the calorie or kilojoule count you should be eating every day:

  • Men – 2500 calories/ 10500kJ
  • Women – 2000 calories / 8400kJ

That’s the gist of it! For more information about weight loss, weight gain and everything in-between, ask our doctors. All you need to do is subscribe to our Hello Doctor service. Visit our Buy Now page for more details.

Source: Kids Health, NHS