What Are Calories? How To Burn Calories?

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burn-calories Weight loss requires us to burn more calories than we consume.  Our success depends on understanding what calories are and what methods we must utilize in order to burn them safely and effectively.

Just What Are Calories?
Calories are units of heat equal to the amount of heat needed to raise the temperature of one kilogram of water by one degree Celsius.  In simpler form, calories are quantities of energy-producing potential in food.



How Do Our Bodies Use Calories?
Our bodies use the calories in food to maintain shiny hair, glowing skin, healthy hearts, and many other critical life-enabling processes.  As food passes through our digestive systems, it breaks down into nutrients (amino acids, simple sugars, fatty acids, & mono-glycerides) that our bodies use for growth, maintenance, and repair.

What Happens If We Take In Too Many Calories?
Our bodies use calories on a “supply & demand” system.  If the daily supply exceeds the demand, the extra calories are stored in our bodies as fat cells.  On the other hand, if the daily demand exceeds the supply, we pull energy from those stored fat cells and lose weight.

How Can We Burn Calories?
To burn calories, we must increase the “demand” with activity.  Exercise is an excellent way to increase the demand and manage the body’s fat supply because it uses fat as fuel, therefore burning calories.  Exercise also increases muscle mass and metabolic rates, which, in turn, causes the body to burn even more calories over an extended period of time. Our body’s metabolism can be raised by eating several mini meals per day instead of three big ones.

Do We Have To Exercise To Lose Weight?
Although exercise will lead to faster weight loss, we can cut our daily caloric intake in order to lose weight.  3500 calories equals 1 pound.  Each time we take in over 3500 calories, we gain one pound.  Reducing our daily caloric intake by 500 calories will enable us to lose one pound per week (500 calories x 7 days = 3500 calories lost per week).  We are more apt to keep weight off if we lose it slowly because the key to successful weight loss involves changing your eating habits little by little.

Understanding calories, the role they play in critical body functions, and their supply-and-demand system enables us to better understand how to keep ourselves fit and healthy.  By exercising, building muscle mass, and eating smaller meals, we are utilizing three effective tools that will help us burn calories effectively, maintain a safe weight, and develop a healthier lifestyle.






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