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View Full Version : Is a calorie a calorie? No matter what it comes from?



Lachlan93
02-14-2013, 02:23 AM
In terms of weight loss or weight gain?
When it boils down to it, a calorie is a calorie. Either coming from an apple, a soda or a nip of whiskey, a calorie is a calorie am i right?

Leeuf
02-14-2013, 02:29 AM
That is correct.

However you still get calories unaccompanied by micronutrients and calories accompanied by micronutrients.

germaine07
02-14-2013, 03:00 AM
Hmm, yes and no. Here's a good read:

http://www.bodyrecomposition.com/fat-loss/is-a-calorie-a-calorie.html

http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/79/5/899S.full

FitnessFan76
02-14-2013, 04:23 AM
That is correct.

However you still get calories unaccompanied by micronutrients and calories accompanied by micronutrients.

I was reading an old thread on this that turned into a blazing row. Basically, one person was saying that you can eat loads of McDonalds etc to get a lot of calories and everything would be fine. Most other people were against that - it certainly doesn't sound right to me - sounds like a recipe to do nothing but put on loads of fat and become thoroughly unhealthy!

One other thing - I've always been told that eating too many calories in your main evening meal is bad, but then again that came mainly from my sister who has been battling her weight all her life. Does it apply if your aim is to bulk and put on muscle, or doesn't it matter how many calories you have with your evening meal as long as you don't exceed your macros? That's one of the problems I've got: most of my limited nutritional information is based on losing weight, not gaining it - in the form of muscle rather than loads of fat of course.

germaine07
02-14-2013, 04:33 AM
^^ Read:

http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=136691851
http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=121703981

Leeuf
02-14-2013, 04:37 AM
I was reading an old thread on this that turned into a blazing row. Basically, one person was saying that you can eat loads of McDonalds etc to get a lot of calories and everything would be fine. Most other people were against that - it certainly doesn't sound right to me - sounds like a recipe to do nothing but put on loads of fat and become thoroughly unhealthy!

Technically if you eat only McDonalds, but manage your macros properly, you can get bodybuilding gains (bulk or cut). The problem is that McDonalds is low in micronutrients and high in artificial poisons which will screw you over in the long term.


One other thing - I've always been told that eating too many calories in your main evening meal is bad, but then again that came mainly from my sister who has been battling her weight all her life. Does it apply if your aim is to bulk and put on muscle, or doesn't it matter how many calories you have with your evening meal as long as you don't exceed your macros? That's one of the problems I've got: most of my limited nutritional information is based on losing weight, not gaining it - in the form of muscle rather than loads of fat of course.

I am currently bulking and I eat on average 2200 calories between 8pm and 11pm (I am normally asleep by 11pm). It makes no difference when you eat what. I eat like that because it suits me. I'd go as far as to say it's actually better to eat later in the day, even before falling asleep. Don't quote me on that though.

FitnessFan76
02-14-2013, 04:41 AM
Technically if you eat only McDonalds, but manage your macros properly, you can get bodybuilding gains (bulk or cut). The problem is that McDonalds is low in micronutrients and high in artificial poisons which will screw you over in the long term.


That's exactly my concern. Fast food is filled with all kinds of rubbish - and with this horsemeat thing here in the UK, I'm not inclined to go anywhere near processed meat right now. ;) Thanks for your reply. :)

Jab1
02-14-2013, 04:48 AM
A calorie is a calorie just as a centimetre is a centimetre. It's a unit of measurement.

Different foods are different though - quelle surprise.

naturalguy
02-14-2013, 05:33 AM
It's not that simple

LordWolF
02-14-2013, 06:19 AM
Don't go too deep in stuff like that, you can read stuff about that to have knowledge, but in the end is what you eat and see if that works for you or not.

Ben6485
02-14-2013, 06:34 AM
a calorie is a calorie but you still need to manage your macros

GGWarrior8
02-14-2013, 07:40 AM
A calorie is a calorie just as a centimetre is a centimetre. It's a unit of measurement.

This. Saying a calorie from a donut is not the same as a calorie from a chicken breast is like saying an inch from a ruler is not the same as an inch from measuring tape.

ven33
02-14-2013, 07:42 AM
It's not that simple

x2.

GGWarrior8
02-14-2013, 07:55 AM
Obviously there is more to healthy dieting than just counting calories, but for the purpose of weight gain/loss, calories are all that matters.

Sarcobium
02-14-2013, 07:57 AM
A calorie as typically used by the layman is a unit of energy measurement ex vivo, that's it. Foods are composed of different molecules that pass through various metabolic pathways and have different fates and effects. Don't confuse the two or use them synonymously.

Divall213
02-14-2013, 08:01 AM
Can you elaborate on how that is incorrect?

In terms of weight loss/gain like op said

Assuming either way you get the same micro and macro nutrients

Dw the guy deleted his post to which this response was to

ironwill2008
02-14-2013, 08:04 AM
IN on yet another tired, old, 10-page thread that will certainly devolve into yet another 'clean vs. dirty' war of words.

jimsmith9999
02-14-2013, 11:15 AM
Obviously there is more to healthy dieting than just counting calories, but for the purpose of weight gain/loss, calories are all that matters.

I don't think anyone on this forum should care about weight loss or gain. The focus for anyone even has a rough idea of what to do is on fat loss/gain and lbm loss/gain.

jimsmith9999
02-14-2013, 11:21 AM
I've always thought the saying is silly. When said, most imply that a calorie is a calorie, so long as your keep the macros the same/eat adequate protein/fats or something along those lines.

But by the strict interpretation, it means that it does not matter - 2000 calories is 2000 calories, and there will be no difference for a 190lb male between getting those 2000 calories from 20g/protein, 20g/fat and 435g/carbs vs 190g/protein, 76g/fat and whatever amount of carbs it takes to bring it up to 2000 calories. (yes - I know it's an extreme and silly example...)

7V64
02-14-2013, 12:58 PM
strictly speaking, yes, but you also have to account for things such as the thermogenetic properties of what you eat