I read this somewhere else...
"What about calories?
Generally, low carb diets don’t require you to keep track of caloric intake. A calorie is the energy needed to raise the temperature of one kilogram of water one degree Celsius. Your body does not literally burn foods like a calorimeter. Different macronutrients (i.e., carbohydrate, fat, and protein) have different effects on hormones, which have different effects on fat storage, and provide different amounts of energy to the body in different ways.
You’ve probably been told weight loss is a simple matter of calories in minus calories out. This was “proven” by citing the First Law of Thermodynamics. You were told wrong. The First Law of Thermodynamics has to do with energy balance in a CLOSED system. Your body is not a closed system, unless you figured out a way to not poop, breathe, sweat, etc. In fact, calories from macronutrients CAN’T be equal since a deficiency of carbs requires your body to convert protein into glucose. That process has a “cost.” To say calories are all equal violates the Second Law of Thermodynamics.
In short, using the word “calorie” to connote the amount food consumed or amount of energy ingested is clumsy and inaccurate. However, it’s a term used throughout nutritional literature, so we’re stuck with it. Calorie counts can be useful “rules of thumb,” but always keep in mind their limitations.
Experiments have been conducted prove people respond differently to the food they consume. Either the scientists found a way to violate the laws of thermodynamics, or most people’s understanding of how the body uses food is wrong. Guess which one it is? One famous study was conducted in the Vermont state prison where every inmate was forced to eat the same amount without exercising. The amount of weight gained varied greatly.
Fredrik Nyström conducted a controlled experiment at Linköping University to determine the effects of an extreme high calorie diet on people who are naturally thin. He force fed the participants 6,000 calories a day, roughly double what most of the volunteers ingested normally. He discovered that their weight gains were neither predictable nor consistent within the group. After the experiment concluded, the test subjects quickly returned to their pre-test weights and eating habits.
The *** documentary Horizon aired a documentary called “Why Are Thin People Not Fat” that featured a repeated experiment in England conducted by Nyström with the same results. I found a copy of it on YouTube:
Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4 Part 5 Part 6 Part 7
Claiming obesity is a product of a positive energy balance is as enlightening as saying global warming is a product of the Earth getting hotter. No sh*t, Sherlock. It’s not very helpful to state the effect while ignoring the cause. We must determine how the body is processing the energy we ingest, and how it can be prevented from turning into fat. That’s where hormones come in since hormones regulate fat storage. If we can manipulate our hormones, we can change how our bodies use the calories we eat. An overweight person is not necessarily someone who overeats; their body simply may be storing an undesirable amount of fuel as fat instead of using it for energy. Likewise, a naturally skinny person may be converting their surplus fuel into energy, lean tissue growth, or heat instead of fat.
What if we restrict calories a whole lot? Won’t that cause weight loss? Yes! If someone is starved of fuel, the body is forced to use those restricted calories to preserve survival. That may mean using fat stores, breaking down lean muscle tissue, lowering body temperature, lethargy, etc. Of course, this is not a desirable long term condition. The beauty of low carb diets is that they do not attempt to starve the body of energy. They attack the root of the problem: fat metabolism.
Some studies attempt to show that all diets have the same effective weight loss when strictly controlling calories. Participants are separated into different groups, each with a different predefined ratio of fat, protein, and carbs. The kinds of foods eaten by each group can differ greatly. However, the total number of calories ingested each day for each group is must be the same. The term for this kind of comparison is “isocaloric.” The “cheat” they use in these studies is that they do not allow the participants to ingest their typical amount of calories, or even the normal basal calories for their height, age, weight, and activity level. Instead, they cut their calories significantly, which puts their bodies into semi-starvation. Their bodies are now fighting to use whatever calories are available for survival. These kinds of studies don’t provide a meaningful comparison of diets under normal metabolic conditions. Studies that do not force calories to be restricted usually show a significant advantage of very low carb diets over their converse.
Another problem with diet comparison studies has to do with controlling variables that may affect the outcome. If a low fat diet demands that food intake be cut significantly, that also implies carbohydrates will be cut, too. From the article “Calories, fat or carbohydrates? Why diets work (when they do)”:
Gary Taubes posted:
Virtually any diet that significantly restricts the number of calories consumed, even a diet that is described as low-fat (because the subjects are instructed to reduce the proportion of fat calories they consume), will cut the total amount of carbohydrate calories consumed as well. This is just simple arithmetic. If we cut all the calories we consume by half, for instance, then we’re cutting the carbohydrates by half, too. And because these typically constitute the largest proportion of calories in our diet to begin with, these will see the greatest absolute reduction. If we preferentially try to cut fat calories, we’ll find it exceedingly difficult to cut more than 400 or 500 calories a day by reducing fat — depending on how much fat we were eating to begin with — and so we’ll have to eat fewer carbohydrates as well.
Put simply, low-fat diets that also cut significant calories will cut carbohydrates significantly as well, and often by more than they cut fat.
And what about the quality of carbohydrates on a so called low fat diet? Sugar, white flour, and other refined carbohydrates are typically replaced with whole grains and fiber. The fact that these kinds of diets, when adhered to strictly, can often produce results shouldn’t be surprising. However, it also shouldn’t be surprising when diets that cut carbohydrates even more result in a larger weight loss."
is there any validity to it?
Thread: Do calories matter on low carb?