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Fitness Chef Graeme Tomlinson debunks myths that expensive health foods are lower calorie

A fitness blogger has warned dieters that swapping snacks for ‘healthy’ alternatives can be counterproductive.

Graeme Tomlinson, 31, from Aberdeen, who is known online as The Fitness Chef, claims that all you need to do to avoid weight gain is to track your calories and ‘remain in a deficit’. 

Hoping to bust popular myths, he has gained 530,000 followers by shining the light on how many hidden calories popular dieting products contain compared to their counterparts, in an array of eye-opening infographics.  

He reveals how swapping cola for a fruit juice could add an extra 90 calories to your daily count, and how WW chocolate digestives only have 9 less calories than original chocolate digestives – but cost 20p more per 50g. 

However he does admit that the healthier swaps can contain more nutrients, fibre and less fat, and advises those wishing to lose weight to watch their quantity instead of counting the calories.

Graeme Tomlinson, 31, from Aberdeen, who is known as The Fitness Chef, says that all you need to do to avoid weight gain is to track your calories and remain in a deficit. For example, Weight Watchers chocolate digestives have 237 calories per 50g, while the famous McVities biscuit only has 11 more calories but is almost half the price. Similarly, their cookies have 222 calories per 50g and cost 38p, while Maryland Cookies are 243 calories and cost 31p per 50g

His graphics reveal how some seemingly healthy alternatives may actually be stopping some people from burning fat and losing weight as they contain more calories than you might think.

For example, Weight Watchers chocolate digestives have 237 calories per 50g, while the famous McVities biscuit only has 11 more calories but is almost half the price.

Similarly, their ‘low calorie’ cookies have 222 calories and cost 38p per 50g, while Maryland Cookies are 243 calories and cost 31p per 50g. 

Graeme also warned of Cadbury’s 30 percent less sugar Dairy Milk, which only has 15 calories less than the original – but does admit that it contains more fibre which is likely to fill the individual up faster. 

Graeme has also warned of Cadbury's 30 per cent less sugar Dairy Milk, which only has 15 calories less than the original. Taking to Instagram, the fitness expert wrote: 'The intentions of Cadbury's 'response to the obesity crisis' are commendable to an extent. But in this case, it's not the thought that counts.

Graeme has also warned of Cadbury’s 30 per cent less sugar Dairy Milk, which only has 15 calories less than the original. Taking to Instagram, the fitness expert wrote: ‘The intentions of Cadbury’s ‘response to the obesity crisis’ are commendable to an extent. But in this case, it’s not the thought that counts.

'One argument usually presented in favour of fruit and vegetable smoothies over fizzy drinks is inclusion of fibre. And given that these ingredients comprise of puréed fruit, one would assume that there would be moderate to significant amounts of fibre included, yet there is not' Graeme explained on Instagram

‘One argument usually presented in favour of fruit and vegetable smoothies over fizzy drinks is inclusion of fibre. And given that these ingredients comprise of puréed fruit, one would assume that there would be moderate to significant amounts of fibre included, yet there is not’ Graeme explained on Instagram

Taking to Instagram, the fitness expert wrote: ‘The intentions of Cadbury’s ‘response to the obesity crisis’ are commendable to an extent. But in this case, it’s not the thought that counts. ⁣ ⁣

‘The 30 per cent less sugar bar does contain 15 fewer calories per 50g. It is also presented in 35g and 85g bars which simply result in consumption of less food than the original 45g, 100g and 200g bars. 

‘It contains nine times the amount of fibre, meaning it is more likely to satiate an individual than the original bar. ⁣ ⁣ But its branding directly points the finger at sugar being a cause of obesity. And that having 30 per cent less of it is ‘working to tackle the obesity problem’. 

Graeme shared that half an avocado has the same amount of calories as a pack of smarties

Graeme shared that half an avocado has the same amount of calories as a pack of smarties

He’s also often compared fruit smoothies to sugary fizzy drinks, saying people are misinformed when they say naturally occurring sugars are ‘better’ than refined.

However Tomlinson acknowledges that healthy foods can come with additional nutrients that have health benefits, which junk food will not contain. 

But he says that if weight loss is your goal, then it doesn’t matter where your calories come from, you will still gain weight if you eat too many of them. 

He adds: ‘As for the heavily health branded innocent smoothie, it is actually very similar to the Coca-Cola. 

‘Whilst it’s inclusive micro nutrients offer functional support, this is the only noticeable difference’ he wrote to his half a million followers.

He's also often compared fruit smoothies to sugary fizzy drinks, saying people are misinformed when they say naturally occurring sugars are 'better' than refined. Tomlinson acknowledges that healthy foods can come with additional nutrients that have health benefits, which junk food will not contain. However he says that if weight loss is your goal, then it doesn't matter where your calories come from, you will still gain weight if you eat too many of them

He’s also often compared fruit smoothies to sugary fizzy drinks, saying people are misinformed when they say naturally occurring sugars are ‘better’ than refined. Tomlinson acknowledges that healthy foods can come with additional nutrients that have health benefits, which junk food will not contain. However he says that if weight loss is your goal, then it doesn’t matter where your calories come from, you will still gain weight if you eat too many of them

‘One thing that has a secondary relationship with energy balance is fibre – because fibre slows digestion and helps us feel fuller for longer. 

‘One argument usually presented in favour of fruit and vegetable smoothies over fizzy drinks is inclusion of fibre. 

‘And given that these ingredients comprise of puréed fruit, one would assume that there would be moderate to significant amounts of fibre included, yet there is not. 

‘Thus, there is no logical argument for the smoothie filling us up for longer than the Coca-Cola.’ 

Speaking exclusively to Femail, award-winning nutritionist Kate Llewellyn-Waters warned of being cautious of just counting calories, and it’s important to making sure dieters are getting sufficient nutrients when trying to loose weight. 

She said: ‘There are an increasing number of studies, which have shown that if our microbiome (our gut bacteria and their associated genes, which is now known as the “second brain”), has a low bacteria count and certain species are not in abundance, this can make us hungrier and then we take in more calories from the foods we are eating. 

A chicken and bacon salad has more calories than a Big Mac - which Graeme acknowledged in this simple graphic

A chicken and bacon salad has more calories than a Big Mac – which Graeme acknowledged in this simple graphic

‘So, even if processed foods such as soft drinks, processed meats, “diet” food products contain the same amount of calories as a whole-food (such as an apple, or a free-range egg), they can actually cause us to consume more calories compared with a whole-food. 

‘Sugar, processed meat, soft drinks and alcohol all change the balance of bacteria in our guts. And, we need positive gut-health for many reasons, including successful weight management. 

‘Every person has a different make-up of gut bacteria, which is completely personalised and different from person to person. And, studies have shown that obese subjects have a lower number of different species in their guts compared with normal weight and non-obese individuals. 

‘Also, a greater diversity of different bacteria species in our guts has been associated with achieving, and more importantly maintaining a healthy weight, and this is greatly influenced by what we eat. So the foods we eat as you can see are very important to long-term successful weight management.’

 



Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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