WHAT IS IN MY FOOD AND DRINK?
BREAKDOWN OF CALS IN FOODS
1 gram of protein = 4cals
1 gram of carbs = 4cals
1 gram of fat = 9 cals
1 gram of alcohol = 7cals
Protein is of primary importance in how the body functions and building muscle. Our body uses protein to repair and form new cells to produce enzymes and hormones, which is essential for the body to grow and maintain itself. Like water, protein makes up a large part of our bodies. Almost everybody knows that muscles are made up of protein.
Proteins provide the body with 4 calories per gram although usually they are not used as a primary energy source. They consist of the essential amino acids and can come from animal sources such as meat, fish, eggs, and milk or vegetable sources such as vegetables, cereals, legumes, and fruits. The best absorbing proteins are classified as having a high biological value (BV). For example, Whey protein concentrate has a BV of 104, Whole egg is 100, Cow milk is 91, Casein protein is 77, and Soy protein is 74.
Muscle tissue is made up of proteins. Protein does not build up in the body and therefore should be provided at regular intervals during the day. Athletes and bodybuilders in particular require a higher then normal protein intake. Taking protein supplements can have the fat-free protein and carbohydrates, without taking in excess calories. The proteins facilitate recovery and the increase in muscle mass. Protein supplementation is suggested two or three times a day, away from main meals and at least two hours before a weight training session. If you can get protein from whole foods instead, that would be preferable.
If you don’t consume sufficient protein from normal foods or protein supplements then you can not build muscles, it’s that simple. However, this does not mean that the more protein you consume the bigger your muscles will get, it’s somewhat more complicated than that unfortunately. I think, however that the lifting of weights require more protein than sedentary people.
I recommend 1 grams a day of quality protein per kilogram of body weight. You wouldn’t need anymore then that. In addition to providing your muscles the building blocks needed for muscle growth, protein also has a positive effect on insulin and energy levels. If you do not take protein with every meal then your blood sugar levels will vary widely throughout the day. One moment you will feel good, then you feel tired and uninspired, but if you have a balanced meals with protein and carbohydrates your energy levels will remain more stable. I refer to protein as “liberating insulin” because the nutrient has a positive and stabilizing effect on insulin levels (a hormone that plays a key role in the regulation of blood sugar, as well as on the metabolism of carbohydrates and amino acids).
Don’t be misled by fad diets that make blanket pronouncements on the dangers of carbohydrates. They provide the body with fuel it needs for physical activity and for proper organ function, and they are an important part of a healthy diet. But some kinds of carbohydrates are far better than others.
The best sources of carbohydrates—whole grains, vegetables, fruits and beans. promote good health by delivering vitamins. Minerals, fibre, and a host of important phytonutrients. Easily digested refined carbohydrates from white bread, white rice and other refined grains, pastries, sugared sodas, and other highly processed foods may contribute to weight gain, interfere with weight loss, and promote diabetes and heart disease. Try to eat carbs when you are going to be active and less when not early morning and lunch times are best.
Generally avoid fats as much as possible but try to include good fats in your diet such as oily fish, avocados etc
Did you know that a glass of wine has the same calories as a slice of cake? How about a pint of lager – surprised to hear it’s the calorific equivalent of a burger?
In a 2009 Department of Health survey of 2,000 adults, four in 10 admitted they didn’t know those facts about calories in alcohol.
The survey also revealed that the average wine drinker consumes 2,000 extra calories each month. Over the course of a year, that’s the equivalent of eating 184 bags of crisps or 38 roast beef dinners.
Calories in alcohol are empty and extra-fattening
Wine, beer, cider, spirits and all our favourite tipples are made by fermenting and distilling natural starch and sugar. Being high in sugar means alcohol contains lots of calories – seven calories a gram in fact, almost as many as pure fat!
Calories from alcohol are ‘empty calories’ – they have no nutritional value. Most alcoholic drinks contain traces of vitamins and minerals, but not usually in amounts that make any significant contribution to our diet.
It’s not just the calories that are a problem for our waistlines. Drinking alcohol reduces the amount of fat your body burns for energy. While we can store nutrients, protein, carbohydrates, and fat in our bodies, we can’t store alcohol. So our systems want to get rid of it – and doing so takes priority. All of the other processes that should be taking place (including absorbing nutrients and burning fat) are interrupted. (1)
Alcohol and appetite
Along with drinking alcohol comes the temptation to eat fattening snacks – crisps and salted nuts in the pub, and chip shop fare on the way home.
According to the Department of Health survey, almost one in three people order crisps, nuts or pork scratchings to accompany a drink, while nearly a fifth regularly opt for takeaway food.
More than one in three said they are likely to eat more than they usually would or ditch the healthy diet when they drink above their recommended daily limits. And more than six out of 10 drinkers have a less healthy breakfast if they have a hangover.
How many calories are in my drink?
With a pint of bitter the same as a medium slice of pizza, and a standard size ‘ready to drink’ bottle (‘alcopop’) the same as 100g of cookies, the calories from alcohol soon add up…
Gin or vodka and tonic =126
Dark rum and coke =142
Medium glass of white wine (175ml) =130
Medium glass of red wine (175ml) =120
Bottle of wine (white) =555cals
Bottle of wine (red) =510cals
5% Lager (pint) =240-50cals
Cider (pint) =180-250cals
Stout (pint) =210cals
Liqueur (50ml) =100 -170cals
Brandy (50ml) =110cals
Bottle = 1600cals
Whiskey (25ml) =55cals
Bottle = 1554cals
For comparison a high fat food such as a chocolate éclair contains 204 cals
So a bottle of Whiskey is like consuming 7-10 Éclairs!!!!!
Mixed drink (Ready to drink) (275ml bottle) =160-228