A common weight loss mantra, ”calories in, calories out,” has been taking some heat lately. This saying, which means that you have to burn more calories than you consume, holds some obvious truth, but does not tell the whole story.
Not all calories are created equal – calories from protein and fiber, for example, will keep you full longer than those from sugar – but recent studies show that it is even more complicated than that. There may be something in processed food itself that makes us eat more.
A new study found that participants gained more weight when eating ultra-processed food, even if they were offered meals that included the same amount of calories, fat, protein, sugar, salt, carbs and fiber than the other group.1 The first group ended up eating about 500 calories more a day, leading researchers to conclude that something in the processed food made them eat more. Another study found that it is easier to gain weight today than 20 to 30 years ago – even when following the same diet and exercise plan.2
How is this possible? While we do not all have the answers yet, researchers think that ultra-processed food and chemicals in our bodies (from food and its packaging as well as other sources, like pesticides) might impact our hormone levels, and consuming meat with antibiotics and hormones could be changing our gut bacteria. 3 It is also possible that over-farming and pesticides have depleted some of the nutrients from the food we consume. 4
Eating whole, natural food may be key to both weight loss and health, but it is practically impossible to completely avoid exposure to chemicals. In fact, the average American has over 200 industrial chemicals in the body. 5 Therefore, it is also important to regularly detox to remove some of these toxins. Karuna’s Detox juice contains two key ingredients that could help with this process: aronia berries and mung bean sprouts. It is believed that mung bean protein, tannin, and other polyphenols can help remove pesticides, mercury, arsenic and other heavy metals from the body. 6 A detox also will make you feel refreshed and restored, which can help prevent stress eating.
1 – https://www.vox.com/science-and-health/2019/6/11/18652653/diet-weight-loss-ultra-processed-foods-microbiome?utm_source=pocket-newtab
2 – https://getpocket.com/explore/item/why-it-was-easier-to-be-skinny-in-the-1980s?utm_source=pocket-newtab
3 – https://www.vox.com/science-and-health/2019/6/11/18652653/diet-weight-loss-ultra-processed-foods-microbiome?utm_source=pocket-newtab
4 – https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29432005
5 – https://www.ehstoday.com/health/news/senate-introduces-safe-chemicals-act-0415
6 – https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3899625/