Should I count calories?

The key to weight loss is to burn more calories than you take in. Even a small shift in the balance between how many calories you consume and how many you burn can lead to important weight loss over time. Your doctor or certified nutritionist can help you determine the appropriate number of calories you should be eating each day, based on your current BMI and activity level.

Counting calories doesn't mean you'll be hungry all the time. Munching on high-fiber, low-calorie foods will help you feel satisfied while you still lose weight.
  • Choose yogurt, avocados, and whole grains.
  • Train your eyes to pick the perfect portion.
  • Avoid eating large, high-fat meals.
Dr. Michael Roizen, MD
Internal Medicine
Calories do count -- and counting calories is one way to measure your weight loss efforts -- but it only makes sense if you’re counting healthy calories. Imagine you’re tagging along with Harold and Kumar for a meal of just one 140-calorie White Castle slider. Is this meager serving going to help get you in top shape? Nope.

For optimal weight loss and good health, avoid calories from bad fat, such as trans fats (partially hydrogenated oils that are found in many baked goods and packaged foods), calories from added sugars and syrups, saturated fats from four-legged animals, all skin on poultry, and palm and coconut oils.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.