I have a question about calorie intake, and was wondering if someone who knows the science behind this lifestyle would be able to answer. I have started my new Raw Till 4 life two weeks ago. Up until learning about Freelee and watching her videos I was always taught that a calorie is a unit of measurement for energy, and that, whether it be from fruit or another source, the amount you put in your body without working off, you will gain weight.
I've also found that I've been gaining weight from eating this way. Granted, I realize that I've only been doing this for two weeks, and that it takes a while for any real change to happen in the body, I'm still curious as to why.
Thanks so much!
I was also aksing this to myself, now I have an answer that makes sense to me.
Dr. McDougall sais that for your body it's very unefficient to transform extra carbohydrates into fat. So if you eat more carbohydrates than you need it's stored (invisibly) in your cells or burned as heat. You need to eat very very much more than you need (like 5000 kcal or something, but it depends on your body) that your body will store it as fat.
But on the other hand fat from your food it stored on yout body very easy. So the most people have their fat from the fat they eat. "The fat you eat is the fat you wear" (by Dr. McDougall in his book The Mcdougall Program for Maximum Weight Loss)
(I hope my english is not too bad^^)
Not all calories are created equal. Our cells and brain run off glucose and utilises it as energy.
Some people will gain, others will lose, it depends on the person past and their metabolic damage. Therefore EVERYONE is different. When our body finally gets the calories it needs (to function, heal, shed weight etc), it stores these in case it will not get them again for a long time (when the body has been in starvation mode - famine), so once it trusts you and knows its going to keep getting all this amazing food fuel, it will start to utilise it better knowing it doesn't have to keep extra supplies anymore. ie. once the metabolic damage is healed.
From my experience when I initially upped my calories I put on a little puffiness (not fat or weight), but after a few weeks or months my body got used to it leaned up again.
It's important to know that not all calories are created equal. So the calorie in calorie out model is just plain false. When you eat a high carb plant based diet your metabolism gets cranked up to it's peak level meaning you physically need and burn more calories from just being alive. High fat or protein foods bog down the metabolism because they require more time to digest.
Also, extra carb calories are stored as glycogen. The average body can store 2000+ calories of glycogen. After that the body may try and store extra calories as fat though that is unlikely because de novo lipogenesis is very inefficient in humans (only 25-60% of the calories are retained). It is more likely that your body will burn them off as body heat, or through movements (like your leg bouncing).
Basically I would recommend eating until you're satiated. At first that might mean eating beyond you are full or maybe even less. Just get in touch with the needs of your body and eat until you have had enough. You don't really need to worry about calories unless you are trying to do new or more fitness activities.
Thank you so much for this detailed response! I have been on the Raw Till 4 for about a month and a bit now, and already I can feel my body tightening up. I suppose my body was just getting used to it in the first few weeks.
May I ask you one more question? I've been monitoring my cooked calorie intake in comparison to my raw food intake, and have been averaging about 35%-40% of my calories from cooked foods- is this too high?
Thank you again :)
I wouldn't worry about it too much. As long as you are eating plenty of fruit throughout the day and not getting all or most of your calories from one cooked meal you should be fine. I probably get about the same amount of my calories from cooked food as you.
You can ask as many questions as you want. That is the point of this forum.