Calorie Counting: The Heart of Most Diets

The calorie counting theory of obesity -- technically known as the Caloric Balance Hypothesis -- is what most of us believe. It tells us:

Overeating Inactivity Weight Gain

Eating Less Exercising More Weight Loss

To learn more about the Caloric Balance Hypothesis, click on the links below:

  • The technical theory behind calorie balance.
  • Predictions. The Caloric Balance Hypothesis makes certain testable, falsifiable guesses about how nature works. Thus, evidence from the real world should be able to confirm or refute the theory. Below is a list of eleven of these key predictions.

    Phenomenon Caloric Balance Explanation
    1. Weight Gain Over eating and inactivity--i.e.failed calorie counting--cause us to get fat.
    2. Weight Loss Appetite control and increased activity--i.e. successful calorie counting--cause us to lose fat.
    3. Weight Maintenance To maintain a constant weight over time, one must consciously regulate calories in/calories out.
    4. Calorie is a Calorie? The body is a simple machine: a calorie is a calorie.
    5. Obesity Epidemic An epidemic of overeating and inactivity has caused the obesity epidemic.
    6. Diseases of Civilization Says nothing about why obesity associates with diseases of civilization like diabetes, heart disease, stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, malnutrition and gout.
    7. Low Carb Diets Carb restricted diets and other measures taken to improve blood insulin levels only lead to weight loss if calorie counting leads to calorie restriction.
    8. Role of Behavior vs. Role of Physiology in Obesity Obesity is a psychological problem.
    9. What is Our Fat Tissue Says absolutely nothing about how, why, when, and where excess calories 'turn into' fat and nothing about why some people get fat while others don’t.
    10. Unexplained Weight Changes People who gain/lose fat as the result of drugs, genetics, diseases, brain injuries, natural body development, hormonal or metabolic shifts or other biochemical activity only do so because these factors somehow change their calorie intake/expenditure.
    11. Public Conviction that Calories Count Health authorities almost unanimously support the Caloric Balance Hypothesis because the evidence supports it and/or because competing hypotheses, like Lipophilia, have been disproven.

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    10.18.11 Beyond Caloriegate Cover Art

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