I have never counted calories: Not a great... - Weight Loss NHS

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I have never counted calories

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Not a great week to start the 12 week plan. I was taken out for dinner a few times this week for my birthday . Tomorrow I will do the same again with my hubby and family As I have said. I have never counted calories and I don't want to get into all that ( 69 tomorrow too old) I have really took on all the advice given on this site regarding a healthy diet and armed with all this information I I already know what to do. Here's hoping I succeed and stick to a sensible dietary routine where. I won't feel hungry or deprived. I think Ican do that. I will just call it (Eating more healthy) . Yourhelp is much appreciated. Thanks. I will see you in 2 weeks time when. I hit the scalesπŸ’•

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Heya! Happy Birthday! Well done for starting the plan. Try to pick healthy ish food when you go out and you could still lose weight. You probably dont need to count calories if you are eating healthy and doing smaller portions. Good luck for your next weigh in im sure youll succeed.

You can do it!


macer- you are in no way too old. I'm 66 and just lost 3 stone. Stuck with whatever diet plan you choose, but don't let ageism get in your way - us old girls can do it too.

castiggyRestart June 2020 in reply to libbydaniels88

I was feeling old at 58 and wondering why I'm bothering at my age. Thanks, I feel more inspired now!

Happy Birthday Macer πŸŽ‚

Sounds like you're having a super celebratory week! It is actually a perfect week to start the plan because if you can manage to make healthy food choices in these conditions, regulars weeks will be easy peasy πŸ˜‰

I had never counted calories before this year. It was always the one thing I wouldn't do. Counting calories seemed too obsessive and in the beginning it was. Weighing and recording everything took forever, checking packages was annoying and eating out was stressful.

It got better and you know what, counting calories turned out to be the right path for me. All these years I tried different things that saw me yoyo up and down and finally I am in control of my weightloss, 10kg in five month.

As I was learning about calorie falues of food and portion sizes I was appalled to see how distorted my ideas were about how much energy I consume vs how much I burn. Bottom line, weightloss is maths and my equations didn't add up.

I'm not saying you have to count calories and I very much wish for you to find a way that works, feels good and is sustainable. I'm just suggesting to count calories for a little while to see if the amount of energy you think you consume matches to what you eat.

Either way, have fun on your journey! You can do it!!! πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘


Macer in reply to HealthyTanja

Thank you for taking the time to advise me much appreciated πŸ’•


You can do it, I'm 76 and with the support and encouragement of this forum I am approaching my first stone loss. I do count calories .its not too difficult with a set of kitchen scales and gets easier as you go along. I've cut out nothing. That would not work for me. I'm just that bit more careful about my choices and always have my sweet treats( counted) to look forward to. Good luck.😊


So you've decided not to follow the 12 week NHS Weight Loss Plan? Because that does involve counting calories.


I do agree that counting calories is a chore. However, I also agree with others here that it is highly likely to be the best way for most people to lose weight. So I would suggest you give it a go first. You might be pleasantly surprised. It does get easier as you get more familiar with it and remember the calories in your most-used foods. Also, certain foods don't need weighing - eg eat 2 weetabix for breakfast rather than weighing out 80g of bran flakes, much quicker. Green veg also don't need weighing as they are so low in calories.

Doing a basic cut-down of your food might work for you, of course, especially at first, but the danger of doing it like that is that you don't really know what your intake is. Therefore if the weight doesn't go, or goes too slowly, it's that much harder to sort the problem out. It's horrible to get into the situation where you're trying but not getting the success or you lose the same few pounds and put them back on every few weeks. Calorie counting, I think, helps to avoid that as you can adjust your intake to lose at the rate that is right for you.

Wishing you success whichever way you decide to it, though. Good luck!

struggle in reply to Hidden

Your reply to Macer really struck a chord with me, especially the second paragraph. I am almost 75 and, although I do eat very healthily, I have for years, as you aptly describe, tried hard, lost the same few pounds and put them back on every few weeks. Also, like Macer, I have resisted calorie counting, which I used to do in the 70's, but your sensible argument in favour of starting again, has convinced me of its benefits. Thank you

Hidden in reply to struggle

My pleasure. I hope it works for you!

I decided some time ago that trying to slim half-heartedly (which I am prone to do) was actually as hard as doing it properly, yet I didn't get the good results I get when I do stick to my plan completely.

So I think there is a lot to be said for either dieting properly to get the weight off, or not dieting at all and just accepting the extra pounds. But there's not much argument for the halfway house of a couple of good days, a couple of bad days, repeated over and over!

struggle in reply to Hidden

You're absolutely right of course! But what a realist! As a dreamer for most of my life I am grinning to myself as I write this in response to your extraordinarily practical and self evident statement. What a truly healthy approach you have to this whole business. It has brought me up with a much needed and well-timed check. It does apply to everything in life doesn't it. The old adage...if a job's worth doing etc. Thank you very much... really appreciated.

Macer in reply to Hidden

Thank you for your very informative and kind advice Thank you πŸ’•

Macer in reply to Macer

Hi struggle just love yourself and know you are going to do great things You are a unique and special individual Hold your head up high you are worth it. All will fall into place and you will get the courage and strength to really do this. Best of Irish luck πŸ’•


Don't poo poo calorie counting. In my opinion until we count calories our view of food values will still be distorted. Ok, some foods are obvious , eg: cake v cabbage , but lots of very similar looking foods can vary widely in their calorie value and we only learn this by counting calories, at least to start with.

Many of us on here also use the simple app 'myfitnesspal' to calculate and log our foods, its very easy and once you save your regular items you get to know them by heart.

I started my weightloss journey age 62 , lost slowly and steadily and reached my goal of BMI 23 . Two years later I am still maintaining my weight. But I would certainly never have managed this without calorie control.

Macer in reply to elliebath

I would never poo poo anyone for counting calories elliebath Its just for me at the minute it's too much. I will start with little steps We are all different and this is what makes this site so appealing to me Thank you for sharing πŸ’•

Ovets in reply to elliebath

I think your point is to get an awareness of calorific values by counting initially...agree, and it should include estimates of energy expenditure as well, and basal metabolism...energy balance stuff.

After that, move on and stop counting, yes?


elliebathMaintainer in reply to Ovets

Once you reach desired weight , then yes you can try to maintain it by portion size alone. Works for some but not for others. Personally I have only managed to maintain my goal weight by tackling any gain of more than 4 lbs... by calorie counting once again until Im back to goal weight.

GottodothisHealthy BMI

Good morning Macer,

Happy birthday.

If your mobile phone can download apps I swear by and many people on here and I know use Myfitnesspal. Counts your steps, tells you carbs, protein, fats and micronutrients. While out shopping you can scan a product to check cals etc, recipe section so you can input e.g yorkshire pudding recipe and works it out, stores meals. I would be lost without it.

Good luck and have a good week


Macer in reply to Gottodothis

Wendy. I have a Wee Nokia phone which. I love it just takes messages and calls. Thank you for contacting me and. I wish you all the best May you have a great week and all the luck in the world πŸ’•

Ovets in reply to Gottodothis

Yeh but would you be thin....or fat.....without it?

It's an important point don't you think?


I prefer to count portions, and eat much less overall than I used to 😊 Sensible aims to be healthy and move more 😊 Just be aware of portion size, I always ate healthily but still gained weight because I ate too much! πŸ˜• Happy Burthday and Good luck

Macer in reply to IndigoBlue61

Thank you Anna 61πŸ’•

IndigoBlue61Administrator in reply to Macer

If you would prefer to do that have a look at the British Heart Foundation 'facts not fads' for details 😊


We each of us have to do what's right for us as individuals, there are no right, or wrong ways, only different ways. If you can eat healthily and feel the benefits of doing that, then you go for it and I wish you the best of luck :)

I hope you had a very happy birthday, Macer and we shall look forward to seeing you back in a fortnight's time, hopefully at the monday weigh-in :)

Ovets in reply to moreless

Kinda, but some are more successful than others, and I'm sure research would demonstrate what works and what doesn't...well, maybe it would.

The counting crows...no, calories, thing is probably pushed by certain organisations and a pseudo-scientific approach. From experience and logical analysis it's not difficult to work out what foods will be healthy/low calorie and vice versa. Far better than counting I would venture.

morelessAdministrator in reply to Ovets

Each to their own........................................said the woman who kissed a cow! ;)

Counting calories has worked for me too, when you relax a bit and guess you don't guess right , that's why I decided to go lower to allow for the guessing and it does creep up if you don't watch it my graph has horrible upward spike but I went half stone lower than my original goal to allow for it, when I counted it went down dramatically!! Good luck ps you are never too old I am 67 and feel great now I have lost 3.5 st.

I hate counting calories too however I felt I have no choice. So just for eight weeks I am and it's work. If you just fill yourself with tasty veggies this will help you immensely. Good luck

feelgood41 in reply to Sarbi

Hi Sarbi. Tasty veggies how do you do that. By the end of the day by teatime my tastebuds aren't enthusiastic yet I am sure I have consumed enough calories by then to los this 7lbs again. Would like some ideas..Feelgood 41

Sarbi in reply to feelgood41


I tend to eat egg with onions and spinach in the morning, this keeps me going. Plenty of water, black coffee. Salad for lunch with could be lettuce leaves. Feta, black olives, little bit of dressing, cucumber chicken breast and for dinner soup? Roasted veg like courgettes, peppers, onions, broccoli with garlic salt or garlic drizzle of oil with chicken or fish. I hope this helps. Adding herbs and spices really does liven up your tastebuds!

feelgood41 in reply to Sarbi

Thank you so much. will make a real effort but having crisis period with husband who has dementia getting worse daily and Diabetic to boot. swollen ankles and long toenails which need cutting - a job to remember to find a chiropodist I keep forgetting! First job is to get him some slippers and shoes which fit. Sorry to bombard you with woes but you have given me a really constructive answer, many thanks. I will keep you posted with a positive asap

Sarbi in reply to feelgood41

Good luck, it seems like you having a hard time. When you have control over certain aspects of your life such as diet it puts you in a better mindset

Macer in reply to feelgood41

Hi feelgood41 Hope you are ok yYou are doing a great job You are there for your husband in his time of need give yourself a pat on the back 'πŸ’•

feelgood41 in reply to Macer

Thank you for encouraging posts they are really appreciated.

Ovets in reply to feelgood41

fg41, you deserve a medal.

Here's an idea...when you are busy, just don't waste time eating...you'll be burning bodyfat and also teaching your body to do that effectively so that your blood sugar will be balanced.

Then, when you do eat, forget about energy and concentrate on micronutrients...vits, minerals, essential fats, good fibre, water...just eat wholefoods, plenty of plants and small amounts of meat, fish...eggs are brill. Presto!

You will get all the help you need here just eat healthy food smaller portions and little treats occasionly. I am 70 and mean to lose a stone by Christmas so go on do it with me, good luck 😊

Macer in reply to dramagroup

I'm doing the same My aim would be to lose a stone by Christmas too Have lost a few pounds which. Im happy about But I don't intend to be miserable I am eating smaller portions Sunday is out my treat day Good luck to you πŸ’•πŸ’•

Did our great great (X millions) ancestor count calories? Er, didn't even know what a calorie was. Was he/she fat? Unlikely.

Did they like eating? I really expect so. Did they eat biscuits? Er probably not. They were hungry, so food tasted great.

Did they live long? No...it was hazardous times...death was not due to bad diet.

Look folks, get into this kinda lifestyle...it's fab, and when you're hungry food tastes bloody amazing. Oh go on, challenge me then :-P

Your right I don't remember the last time I was actually hungry I think we get into a bad habit of nibbling and we are not actually aware of what we are putting into our mouths I was brought up on food from the land that we grew ourselves I naturally carried out this with my own children no weight problems

well done on your healthy journey have a good day

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