Counting Calories Causes Hormonal Chaos

by lydia on September 22, 2015

There are some common myths out there when it comes to weight loss. One is counting calories. I believe by now I have dispelled that counting calories is even important just based on the dietary guidelines I’ve taught you along with an understanding of how your blood sugar works. Just so you understand, calorie counting is NOT critical or even necessary. Please realize that the lie is that a calorie is just a calorie and all calories are created equal. NOT SO.

Calories have impacts on our hormones and restricting them or yo-yo-dieting can cause hormonal chaos. 1000 calories of sugar versus 1000 calories of meat will each have a completely different impact on our hormones. What impact those calories have on your hormonal environment is what dictates weight loss and weight gain.


Hormones drive weight loss and weight gain. Insulin, namely when too high and in excess on an ongoing basis will cause the body to turn on the fat storing mechanisms. When we manipulate the situation and eat in such a way to avoid this excess insulin, by reducing excess sugar/carbs  or improving certain minerals we can turn off that fat storage mechanism.

We can turn on the fat burning mechanism by getting our blood sugar stable or even allowing it to be a bit lower than what is consider normal we can actually turn on glucagon the fat burning hormone. Sugar and carbs are fat inflators and most people have some degree of carbohydrate intolerance today and a lot of that has to do with missing minerals and a modern day diet.

Counting Calories Causes Hormonal Chaos

Here is what happens when you excessively restrict calorie or skip meals:

  • You will feel hungrier. Your body responds to restricted calories by releasing hormones that stimulate appetite. You could say it’s a built in defense/protection mechanism.
  • Your level of thyroid hormone decreases. This causes a slow down in your metabolism.
  • Stress hormone increases in response to the physical stress of skipped meals or insufficient carbohydrate intake.
  • Reproductive function will slow down due to shifts in sex hormone output thanks to insufficient calories.
  • Cell regeneration and tissue repair are inhibited

Please do not buy into any dietary plan that asks you to restrict caloric intake as it will only wreak havoc in the near future. It’s simply not sustainable.

Hopefully, this helps drive home that you must eat plenty of food to have a healthy metabolism to begin with and as you heal and eat all that food, you need to adequately digest that food (which we are all working on) – you will also need to rebuild minerals to better manage your blood sugar and support your liver because it’s got a big role to play too.

The whole body works together – but it can take some time establishing the ‘foundation’ for your health to accelerate and the weight to start to come off and stay off. Hang in there folks – I know a lot of you want to lose weight, but counting calories is not the way to do it. Your body needs and runs on nutrients – focus on getting adequate nourishment in your diet. Food that actually feeds your body, not processed food. Whole, real foods that do not require a label to tell you what is in them.

If you are struggling with this very issue and need guidance or support, please check out my Health Assessment here.



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