The Calories In/Calories Out Paradigm — The Key To Long Term Weight Management FAILURE!

****The following is NOT and in depth explanation, it simply scratches the surface to get folks thinking and talking.  Joe****

The mythical calories in/calories out ideology has been perhaps one of the biggest obstacles in successfully managing obesity and very well maybe one of the direct causes of the current obesity crisis.  I am sure you have heard that to lose weight you need to burn more calories than you take in.  The correlation can, on the surface, appear to make sense — however, in reality it doesn’t.  It may help you lose weight, regardless if it is fat or muscle or fluid.  Calorie restriction can negatively effect body mass.  How many of those who follow calorie restriction, no matter how they exercise, are skinny/fat?  Yes, it will work in the short term, but can you basically starve yourself for long term obesity management?  Following this theory, your weight should dramatically fluctuate from day-to-day, week to week and month to month, based on how much more activity you either put out or how much more or less food you consume.  Human physiology does NOT work that way.

The simple fact is — a calories is NOT a calorie.  Basic physiology will tell us that the human body will process different foods in different ways. The processing of different foods is heavily influenced by the release of hormones, one in particular is insulin.  This is the reason why low carbohydrate eating is such an effective means of not only losing weight, but keeping it off — permanently.

Those that espouse the calorie model of weight management will try to convince you that it doesn’t matter what you eat, just so long as you restrict the number of calories you consume.  So you can eat, say 1,500 calories a day.  To the advocates of caloric restriction it doesn’t matter if you eat 1,500 calories of ice cream, steak, bread, potatoes, chicken, fish, candy,… okay, you get the idea.  Just as long as you restrict caloric intake, you will lose weight.

English: Macro photograph of a pile of sugar (...

You want to know something, this may work, to a point.  However, for a large majority of folks, it will not work in the long-term, and it will definitely not help improve your overall health.  If you are consuming 1,500 calories of sugar, every day, your pancreas is secreting large amounts of insulin, eventually, potentially, leading to insulin related issues including weight gain, obesity and, as Paula Deen was recently diagnosed with, type II diabetes.Grain products are often baked, and are rich s...

The body does not process carbohydrates, proteins and fats the same way.  It is pretty obvious that simple carbohydrates and to a large extent, complex carbohydrates, have a negative effect on the human body.  All carbohydrate, with the exception of fiber is eventually broken down into a simply sugar — so, all those complex carbs you have been dutifully consuming all become either glucose, fructose or galactose.  They will all cause insulin to be released, and if not utilized almost immediately, the excess energy will be stored as fat in the body.

It does matter where your calories come from, it does matter in which form you consume them and it does matter to your overall health what you eat.

I am an advocate of low carbohydrate eating.  Not simply restricting carbohydrates, but eating foods that are not processed and do not contain large amounts of non-fibrous carbohydrate.  I eat foods in as close to the natural state as possible, so I am also an advocate of paleolithic and primal eating.  By combining these two approaches, I have kept my weight in check for the last two years.  Most importantly, the long term benefits are an active, fit and healthy quality of life.


Chiropractor, Dr. Joe Leonardi is the author of the life changing book,A Life Beyond Weight Loss.  He is available to appear on any talk radio, internet podcasting or television outlet. He has appeared TV -35′s Storm Politics with Tiffany Cloud, WILK’s The Sue Henry Show, Magic 93′s Frankie In The Morning, WBRE’s PA Live, SSPTV’s News 13, Public Television WVIA’s State of Pennsylvania and Call the Doctor; Entercom’s Outlook on Northeast PA with Shadoe Steele, Citadel Broadcasting’s Sunday Magazine with Brian Hughes, Lisa Davis’ Your Health Radio; Jimmy Moore’s Livin’ La Vida Low Carb podcast; Hank Garner’s Podcast, Dr. Robert Su’s Carbohydrates Can Kill Podcast.

Dr. Joe Leonardi also will come and speak to your group; to learn more about his motivational speaking fees and availability contact him at and check out his website


************The posting that I  write do not apply to those with an underlying medical or hormonal condition.  I advise anyone embarking on a weight loss and fitness plan to have a thorough medical evaluation. You want to be sure that you are physically able to exercise and you don’t have any underlying medical conditions.*************


8 thoughts on “The Calories In/Calories Out Paradigm — The Key To Long Term Weight Management FAILURE!

  1. Pingback: 1 month NO CARB diet ... anyone has tried? - Part 2 - Page 439 -

  2. It’s depressing that the majority of nutrition professionals are completely incapable of understanding fundamental laws of science. In this case they totally misunderstand the first law of thermodynamics yet quote it as though they do. The first law can be reduced to saying energy may neither be created nor destroyed but then the illogical jump is made to claim any calorie put in your mouth will be entirely utilized for metabolic purposes with 100% efficiency. Any first year mechanical engineering student who doesn’t see through that one will probably fail to become a second year student because it is as though the efficiency of conversion has flown out the window. And if you don’t get this then try this ridiculous example. Kerosene has a higher energy content than gasoline. Fill your car up with kerosene, higher calorie content right? should have more power right? No the engine won’t start because the “metabolism” of the engine operates quite differently on kerosene than on gasoline. Efficiency on gasoline might be 25%, on kerosene, zero percent. You can keep cranking the engine till kerosene runs out the exhaust but there will be zero utilization of the energy in the fuel. Your body has a far more complex metabolism than a gas engine so the way it digests fuel it is correspondingly more complex making it perhaps impossible to calculate accurate energy balances. This is complicated but that’s the way science is; simplify it and you get the wrong answer as most nutritional professionals do.

  3. Wait…there is something fundamentally wrong in this article. Complex sugars are indeed broken down into simple sugars. However they are done so at such a point that the simple sugars are excreted, not digested. That is why complex sugars work so well as zero-cal sweeteners, you don’t absorb anything from them.

    That mistake makes me wonder about the rest.

    • As I stated in the beginning this post was NOT an in-depth explanation. However, with that said, if you believe that you don’t absorb anything from complex sugars, then you really need to take a more in-depth look into the physiology of digestion. Where do you think the glucose and fructose go if they are not immediately burned as energy?
      Thank you for reading and taking the time to comment.

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