Count­ing calo­ries? Don’t bother – ex­perts

CityPress - - News -

Stop count­ing calo­ries and re­duce your sugar in­take.

This is the mes­sage from a group of ex­perts who have found that cer­tain foods with a higher calo­rie con­tent can ac­tu­ally help cut the risk of heart at­tacks, strokes and other health prob­lems.

Writ­ing in a lead­ing med­i­cal jour­nal, Dr Aseem Mal­ho­tra, a public health cam­paigner and car­di­ol­o­gist at the US’s Na­tional Health Ser­vice, says “not all calo­ries are the same”.

The In­de­pen­dent re­ports Mal­ho­tra as point­ing to a can of cool drink, which con­tains 150 calo­ries but is as­so­ci­ated with an in­creased risk of type 2 di­a­betes, as an ex­am­ple. This con­trasts with four ta­ble­spoons of vir­gin olive oil a day, at 500 calo­ries, but which has been shown to re­duce the risk of strokes and heart at­tacks.

“Be­fore we had the obe­sity epi­demic, do you think our grand­par­ents were count­ing calo­ries? The only peo­ple who ben­e­fit from count­ing are com­pa­nies that sell low-fat junk food based on low calo­ries, but full of sugar, which is lower in calo­ries than fat,” he writes.

He says peo­ple must sup­ple­ment their di­ets with ex­tra vir­gin olive oil, nuts, fruits, veg­eta­bles, oily fish and other foods with a higher calo­rie con­tent, but low on sugar.

Diet ex­perts dis­agree, say­ing it’s wrong to cre­ate a “false choice” be­tween calo­rie count­ing and nu­tri­tional value. – Staff re­porter

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