How many calories do you really consume?

A report this week from the Government’s Behavioural Insights Team suggests that many of us are underestimating just how many calories we consume on a daily basis. I don’t think that’s because we are deliberately lying but I think it’s more that we forget to include the snacks between meals and those calories really can stack up. In fact it is thought that people who graze easily underestimate their daily calorie intake by between 500 and 1,000 calories a day. A latte and a muffin mid morning and a piece of fruit mid afternoon may not feel particularly over indulgent but it is easily knocking on 500 calories. Do that on top of your recommended daily calorie allowance every day for a week and you will put on a pound. Do that every week and you will gain over 3.5 stone in a year. That could take you from a healthy BMI today to bordering on clinically obese in just twelve months! And the double whammy is that, it takes much more exercise than you think to burn those extra calories off. It will take about 3/4 of an hour waking or nearly half an hour jogging to work off just that muffin. Current recommendations are that we should all be exercising for 30 minutes at least five times a week but if we enjoy our snacks we probably need to be doing more than that to maintain a healthy weight – certainly food for thought ….