Your Food Calories List and Exercise Effects.

If you search Google for "Food Calories List", you will find 6,430,000 results. Yahoo will give you 25,500,000 and Bing returns 4,840,000 results.

So, you ask, why list another site?

Because, I answer, I want to start you thinking about the overall effects of the calories on your food list and the amount of exercise, or lack of exercise in your lifestyle.

Please keep in mind that I will probably make some far reaching and generalized statements before I'm done, so just use a litle common sense when seeing if they apply to you.

For instance, if I say that if you exercise more and eat less, you'll lose weight. Not necessarily so...I am training to run a marathon, so I get a lot of exercise, yet my weight has pretty much stabilized. What has happened, though, is that I have burned off some fat and added muscle, so my pants have gone from a 32 waist to a 30 waist while my weight has stayed level.

On the note of my weight, according to the latest Body Mass Indicator (BMI) calculations, I am overweight! This is a generalization that I disagree with. The BMI does not take into consideration the large variations in body fat percentages. That has to be done separately, as muscle weighs more per cubic than fat does.

One source shows that muscle is about 18% more dense than fat. Muscle comes in at 1.06 kg/l and fat is 0.9 kg/l

On the subject of exercise, I want to show how what you eat equates to some specific exercise. I am going to assume that you are eating a balanced diet and only as many calories as you need to maintain your lifestyle and you weigh 150 pounds. All of these examples will be added on to your daily needs.

For starters, if you drink one of the highly advertised energy drinks, such as Vault, you will have taken in 290 calories for a 20 ounce bottle. To keep those calories from storing as fat, you'll need to spend 36 minutes on an elliptical trainer if you weigh 150 pounds. If you weigh 200 pounds, it will only take 27 minutes!

A general statement here: the more you weigh, the more calories you burn per exercise/minute. As you loose weight, you will have to exercise longer to burn the same calories.

Do you eat an extra breakfast bar on your way out the door in the morning? That's around 200 calories for each bar, so you'll need to spend an extra 2 hours of regular office work for each bar you eat. Now, if you take a break and have a medium size doughnut or two with your coffee, you just added another 250-500 calories! Ouch...that makes for a long day.

Do you like ice cream? If it's not part of your daily diet, but and extra treat, you're going to add about 200 calories per serving, so plan on spending 2 hours bowling for each 1/2 cup you eat.

If for some strange reason, you decide you need an extra sandwich to tide you over till dinner...say 2 slices of bologna, a slice of cheese and (being healthy) whole wheat bread with mayonnaise. Would you believe 535 calories? You'll need to walk for about 5 hours (at 3 mph) to burn off those calories, so don't think that a leisurely stroll after dinner will take care of that 'snack'.

The point that I'm trying to get across is that there is a price to pay in terms for exercise for all of the calories you eat. As a general rule, if you don't burn off the calories you take in on a regular basis, you'll probably have some weight issues to deal with, and that takes work.

Apply some common sense to your daily habits. Read the labels on the snacks you eat. Be sure that you are aware that most labels will highlight the calories in a serving, but that the container probably has more than one serving. For instance, a serving of soda pop is 8 ounces (1 glass), but the smallest container you can buy is 12 ounces and most sales are going to 20+ ounce sizes.

Take the time to figure out how much you are really taking in on a daily basis and then decide if those choices are really in your best interest. Remember that an extra scoop of ice cream with your apple pie before you go to bed is going to cost you in several ways; your health, your weight and maybe your nightmares.

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