It's mid-December and everyone is already buzzing about their New Year's Resolutions to lose weight. You may be hearing a lot about detoxes or juice cleanses that will help to shed those pounds you gained over the holidays. But today we want to just stick with the basics: empty calories and exercise. We always hear so much about how to lose the weight the fast way but we want to talk about the reason so many of us are in this situation in the first place and what it would realistically take to lose the weight. NOT all calories are the same. In a day and age when so many foods we get are processed and packaged and picked up at a drive through window so many of the calories we are actually taking in end up being empty calorie foods which are calorie dense but are nutritionally devoid. Empty calories are the walking dead of calories. They pack all the punch calorically often have lots of sugars but are devoid of the fiber, vitamins and minerals that the body requires. All those empty calories that don’t truly feed the body also take a lot of effort to work off.
Here are some average calories burned after walking or jogging 1 mile:
100lb person: 70-90 calories 150lb person: 90-110 calories 200lb person: 110-140 calories 250lb person: 140-170 calories
Now let’s compare how much I would have to run just to simply burn off an order of French Fries.
1 order of small French Fries (230 cal) = Jogging 6 mi/hr pace for 2.1 miles 1 order of med. French Fires (380 cal) = Jogging 6 mi/hr pace for 3.45 miles 1 order of large French Fries (500 cal) = Jogging 6 mi/hr pace for 4.54 miles
I would have to jog more than a 5k race to burn off a large order of empty calorie French Fries!
To put that in context of bodyfat, there are 3500 calories in 1lb of fat. So if I wanted to burn off 3500 calories from those nutritionally devoid empty calories that I ate I would have to jog 31 miles.
We are just picking on French fries here, but you can replace this with any nutritionally devoid food. It is important to know the amount of calories your body needs daily and choose your calories wisely!
Now we can't sit here and talk about French fries all morning and not include an awesome recipe! So next time you have a hankering for French fries, make yourself a healthy version that won't hinder your fat loss goals. We found this amazing sweet potato fries recipe from Nom Nom Paleo!
- 2 large garnet yams
- 2 tablespoons of coconut oil, melted (I just nuke it in the microwave for ~30 seconds)
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground pepper
- Smoked paprika (or your favorite seasoning – cinnamon works well, too!)
- Preheat the oven to 400 F on convection bake (or 425 F in a non-convection oven).
- Peel the yams and cut them into even matchsticks. Toss the yams with the coconut oil, salt, pepper, and smoked paprika and place them in a single layer on a foil-lined baking tray.
- Pop the tray in the oven for about 30 minutes, flipping the frites and tray halfway through. The fries are done when they’re brown and crispy on the edges.
Serves 4 people as a side dish.
Leave us a comment and tell us what food what your favorite healthy food swap is?