Should I count calories?

Should you count calories? No. Not if you ask me – or any expert that gets it. Like the luminaries interviewed here:

TIME: You Asked: Should I Count Calories?

Many quotable comments, this may be the funniest:

“If you come into our clinic and say the word ‘calorie,’ we throw you out,” says Dr. Robert Lustig.

Here’s what another smart professor, Dr. David Ludwig, says regarding the true problem behind weight issues:

[F]oods that raise insulin are the ultimate fat cell fertilizer…

Calories count, but you don’t have to count them to lose weight. In fact you shouldn’t.


Weight Control – A Question of Calories or Insulin? – Dr. Andreas Eenfeldt
The Top 5 Tips For Weight Loss
What is Fasting? – Dr. Jason Fung
How to Lose 240 Pounds Without Hunger – Lynne Ivey


  1. Chris D
    I wanted to lose a few vanity pounds before the last summer so I calculated that I eat 2700 calories of a mostly LCHF diet and used Myfitnesspal to track calories with a goal of 1900 calories per day and a little extra exercise. It worked, I managed to eat 1900 calories per day average and exercised a little more than normal at about 50 extra calories burned per day. What didn't work was losing weight, I lost zero pounds after 3 months and looked exactly the same. I went back to eating normally with no counting or tracking and still no change whatsoever even though I was now eating more calories. I'm not here to disprove the law of thermodynamics but I'll never count calories or make food choices based on calories ever again, complete waste of time and taste buds.
    Replies: #2, #4
  2. Bjarte Bakke Team Diet Doctor
    Chris, you're not the only one. Calorie counting is ineffective.
  3. Janet
    Hi Chris. I've been doing the same, but to no avail. I've counted calories most of my life & can't seem to let it go.

    Are you sticking to a LCHF diet & if so have you seen results elsewhere?

  4. Apicius
    Hi Chris,
    From what I experienced was that calorie counting was completely ineffective. What did work was LCHF, but only up to a point where I then plateaued. To continue losing weight, I had to do fasting in combination with LCHF. Check out Dr Fung's different fasting protocols. You choose the one that's right for you. The poundage will then come will see! Good luck!
    Reply: #5
  5. Bjarte Bakke Team Diet Doctor

    How much weight did you lose when you plateaued, and how much more did you lose after including fasting? Finally, what fasting protocol did you use?
    Personally, I vary between 16:8 and 20:4 which both work wonders for me.

  6. Apicius
    I lost about 20 lbs fairly well on LCHF, and then hit a plateau where I would continue to lose but very very very slowly, like less than 0.5 lb per month. When I tried fasting, I noticed I was able to lose more weight, and then lost about another 15 lbs very quickly in first couple of months. I tried a variety of fast protocols. I first started with just skipping breakfast. Then I extended that to just eating one meal a day (dinner). I also tried many days of fasting, and was surprised how easy it was...I thought I would fall over with weakness, but no, I was fine. I now do a 24 hr fast mostly, which is eating only one meal ( dinner) per day. No need to count calories, I eat until full and l feel great all day. I drink a lot and a wide variety of drinks during the day (like coffee, tea, broth, water, etc). When I do fasting for many days in a row, I drink lots of broth. I feel SO GOOD when's hard to describe it but there is a definite difference.

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