1. Many people don't finish what they order in one meal. I can generally get two meals out of a Chipotle burrito. Many do, of course, but that can't be sussed out of the data they used. In addition, the chips sides are sized to share, and I'd wager that most people who order those do share with someone else.
2. It's a mistaken assumption that one meal ought to be only 1/3 of your daily calorie intake. Most of the meals came in around 1000 calories, but I also bet that for most people, this is their largest meal of the day.
3. The recommended maximum sodium intake of 2.4g is probably too low based on many recent studies. Sodium intake is only a significant risk for a very small handful of the population, and in fact low sodium intake is as risky if not more risky, and there's good evidence that 2.4g/day is on the low end of long-term positive health outcomes.
Given the freshness and quality of the ingredients at Chipotle, and the simplicity and openness with which the food is prepared, focusing on calorie and sodium counts is an incomplete way to assess the healthiness of the food. I guarantee that a meal with fewer calories from McDonalds or in a microwaveable box is going to be overall far less healthy.
I live in a college town and this is definitely not the case here. Most people buy them for themselves. Items are also typically eaten for one meal, but it's college students so that's to be expected.
> It's a mistaken assumption that one meal ought to be only 1/3 of your daily calorie intake
I think what they're getting at is what you're also making a point about; that it doesn't necessarily have to be eaten in one setting. The point of lower calories is is gives you more options with what you can eat without gaining weight (assuming you're not on a weight-gain program for power lifting). What's deceiving is that, while Chipotle offers the full ranges of calories for their food, they don't mention that if you go through with all the things they offer then you usually end up in the 1000+ range. I wouldn't doubt if there are many people downing 1000+ calories thinking that they're closer to 600.
> focusing on calorie and sodium counts is an incomplete way to assess the healthiness of the food
This is correct, but to a point. An excess of calories, unless offset by regular exercise, leads to weight gain, which is collectively unhealthy for our society. There's obviously much more to it (an obese person who can run a mile is considered healthier than a skinny person who can't for example), but that's failing to see the bigger picture. The point is, people in developed countries are shoving more calories into themselves than they need, and places like Chipotle aren't a haven of good health - they're also part of the problem.
Do you have a link or data to support that idea? Genuinely curious, as that doesn't sound right to me.
It doesn't sound right to you because it isn't correct. NFL players, as a general rule, are not obese. Obesity is an excess of fat, by both the colloquial and medical definitions. BMI is an indication of obesity, which is not the same as a definition of same.
: a condition characterized by the excessive accumulation and storage of fat in the body
Medical Definition of OBESITY
: a condition that is characterized by excessive accumulation and storage of fat in the body and that in an adult is typically indicated by a body mass index of 30 or greater
"STANDARD DEFINITIONS OF OBESITY, which are based on height and weight, may not apply to former National Football League players and other groups with greater muscle mass, according to a new study"
From your own quotation, "typically indicated by a body mass index of 30 or greater"
Body mass index. BMI. BMI being height and weight. A la http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/educational/lose_wt/BMI/bmic...
Ergo, a standard definition of obesity is calculated by height and weight, deemed 'BMI', which does not take muscle mass into account. Which is what my post states. BMI would state they're obese, and that says little about their actual health.
Obesity IS an excess of fat
Obesity IS INDICATED BY a high BMI
What that means is that when you see a high BMI there's a really good chance you're seeing obesity. But since obesity is defined as excess fat, the unusual cases where BMI doesn't correlate are exceptions to a rule. It should not surprise that professional athletes have bodies that are unusual and exceptional.
"an obese person who can run a mile is considered healthier than a skinny person who can't for example
Do you have a link or data to support that idea? Genuinely curious, as that doesn't sound right to me."
to which I replied
"56% of NFL players are obese (97% are overweight), according to BMI guidelines."
What exactly have you said that disagrees with that? I -agree- that ~real~ obesity, as is generally referred to, is based on fat percentage; I never said otherwise. What I said, very explicitly, was that an NFL who is considered obese ACCORDING TO BMI GUIDELINES (which are used very frequently by layman and health official alike when discussing nutrition and exercise) is actually pretty healthy; the original post questioned whether someone could be obese, able to run a mile, and still be healthier than someone who is skinny but not physically fit enough to run a mile. I addressed that with the qualifier of 'according to BMI' included.
Those numbers seems off. A 10km running session (~1 hour) burns approximately 800kcal. You would need quite a lot of "15-minute light walks" to go from 2000kcal/day to 3000. Way more than 4 times a day.
I do agree that the 2000 calories/day, or 2500 if you exercise moderately, is not the whole story. However, I think it is a very decent estimation for most people, as long as you're not a professional athlete or deviate from the norm one way or another.
metrics involving humans like this one are fraught with uncertainties, and usually the truth leans more towards your own opinion in actuality
Skip the tortilla, sour cream and chips and you've just saved 980 calories. Without those it's hard to create a meal that has a calorie issue. Aside from the sodium, Chipotle is darn healthy.
Subway, for example, makes it tough to find info on individual ingredients. Some things need to be backed out by comparing, say, a roast beef sub vs a veggie sub to determine the stats on the roast beef individually so that you know what you're getting if you do double roast beef.
Edit: Actually, on the same Chipotlefan link, there is a similar link for Subway. http://www.nutritionix.com/subway/nutrition-calculator
Looks like the information provided by chipotlefan is from 2009.
Did I accidentally fall into a time machine and end up in the 1980s?
I'm not for or against fast food. I just think Chipotle has wonderful marketing and has really tapped into what people _want_ to believe or have. I want all the conveniences of fast food without feeling like it's unhealthy or responsible for big agriculture. I don't think it's going to end well.....
Go deeper into the US, though, and you're right; they become increasingly rare. You can still find gems of authentic Mexican food in almost all sufficiently large American cities, but you have to specifically seek it out in many cases.
In most of California and the parts of the Southwest I've been to, taquerias are very common.
> The closest I ever tried was at a Taco Truck in LA, but that was just one food truck.
If you were in L.A. and you couldn't find taquerias, you weren't looking very hard (or you had a bad guide.)
We in the US eat too much period. It's not about which macronutrient we overeat, though carbs tend to be easier to eat a lot of than fats or proteins, and are cheaper to create. But again, the focus needs to be on caloric intake, not on specific macronutrients.
It gets tricky in a few places: calories are labeled as the number of calories a food has in it, not the number of calories you net when you factor in the cost to the body of extracting those calories. 200 calories of chicken breasts costs your body more calories than 200 calories of sugar to extract. Especially if you don't end up using the protein to build muscle and convert it to energy. This isn't a massive difference, but it's significant. Regardless, calorie counting is about establishing a baseline and trending downward, not being 100% accurate in your calorie estimations.
As you mentioned, people with specific needs, like diabetics, are going to have different experiences with carbs, but that's a completely different discussion, and not one I know a ton about.
The body builders thing is interesting. I'm a power lifter and I lift with a lot of body builders so I am familiar. Insulin use like this can help the body absorb nutrients more quickly after a workout (specifically carbs, which can help restore glycogen to the muscles which helps with amino acid absorption) but it's not being used without an increase in overall calories (or it shouldn't be). In short, it's helping body builders eat more (especially post workout), not absorb the same amount differently. In my opinion it's a really stupid idea, though when you consider the trash many body builders put in their bodies it's probably less scary than a lot of the supplements and prohormones out there.
As someone who has used T, insulin is much more scary. At least with T it's been used for decades, we know how to mitigate the risks and handle side effects. You could easily kill yourself not knowing what you are doing with insulin, or probably make yourself diabetic. These oral prohormones are scary too mostly because of liver toxicity and because people could buy them without really knowing it (when they were/are sold at places like GNC).
Umm, I think you did.
Fats and proteins take longer to convert into glucose, and are less likely to cause a glucose spike and subsequent fat storage process.
Carbs are not unhealthy, especially if you can spend the energy immediately. However, it is very easy to consume a large amount of carbs in one go, thus a greater risk for an average person.
I am not nutritionist. I do know that after struggling for a decade of limiting calories and fat, I gave that up, limited myself too 100g carbs / 15g sugar a day, and lost 60 pounds within a year.
I still enjoyed Chipotle, but only the "bowl" variations of their food.
People fear dietary fat, but it turns out that fat is filling and actually difficult for the body to convert into energy, while carbs are the opposite.
For my meals out, I prefer to eat at restaurants which publish nutrition information, but I'm under no illusions that these values are anything more than rough guidance. The core of the problem is in employee training. I find that even restaurants which make an effort to publish nutrition info don't bother to adequately train employees to serve the expected amounts of food.
Your cheese example is a good one. Based solely on anecdotal evidence, I'd wager most people who order cheese at Chipotle end up being served 1.5-3x the intended serving size due to generous and unmeasured portions. I love cheese as much as the next guy, but an extra few hundred unexpected calories adds up very quickly. This also renders any analysis of nutritional value misleading if not useless.
The underlying issue with overeating isn't large meals, it's snacks. So sure, Chipotle's meals are big, but that's not the root of the problem.
In fact, as you point out, Jared lost weight primarily by removing fats from his diet, not carbs.
I cook most of the food I eat, but I take calories into account very broadly, more narrowly when I diet.
Just to say, 1000 kcal might be half day worth of your energy needs on paper, in reality it's much more complex than that. In fact, if you are eating decent food and keeping fat% at ~30-40, I guarantee you that you will have troubles eating more than 2500 kcal per day. If you drink lots of soda and crap like than, then yes, you can manage even 3000. But eating a lot of calories is not such an easy task as many people think.
Edit: Wow, this generated quite a lot of debate. Just to clarify, I have never said that you lose wait eating as much as you want, I said I think we should consider the number of calories more broadly. Use ranges and look into the weekly intakes too. Check what you eat. Kill all the refined sugars. Kill all the complex foods. Start cooking. That will help you more than counting kcals to the gram. It's about how you shift your way of thinking about food. Lots of food out there is almost poison if eaten regularly, lots of this food is even labelled as "healthy", again, it cannot be only about kcals, it's _also_ about kcals.
This is horse shit. It does not matter what form the calories are in, if you are eating too many you will gain weight. If you eat less than you need you will lose weight.
Source: I lost over 100 lbs in 2010-2011.
The bottom line with dieting is find something that works for you.
* Calories in vs. calories out is 100% what determines how much weight you gain or lose.
* Your macronutrient ratios determine how that weight is partitioned (muscle vs fat) and have some control over hormones that contribute to hunger, like leptin.
The end result is that cutting out carbs can help people get to a calorie deficit without feeling hungry like they would on a "standard" low fat diet.
The only way to lose weight is to have a calorie deficit.
No, its not. Muscle and fat don't take the same calorie surplus/deficit per pound to gain or lose, so calories in vs. calories out will not tell the whole story of how much weight you gain or lose.
I believe, in fact, that it takes less of a calorie surplus to gain a pound of muscle than the calorie deficit to lose a pound of fat, so that its actually possible to gain weight over time on a net calorie deficit, within certain bounds.
Also you will never be fully satiated on any meaningful caloric deficit, 40-60g/fiber per day usually increases satiation.
What exactly do you mean by 'standard low fat diet'?
Sorry, I was referring to what has been the standard recommendation for losing weight and being healthy - low fat, low protein, high carb.
> Also you will never be fully satiated on any meaningful caloric deficit, 40-60g/fiber per day usually increases satiation
I disagree a million times over. I'm a 6'1" 190lb male who frequently cuts on 1700 calories and I can feel stuffed all day by consuming lots of lean protein and vegetables. For example two pounds of chicken breast each day would leave me absolutely stuffed with room for another 750 calories for carbs and fat.
I've never in my life heard anyone recommend "low fat, low protein, high carb" for losing weight and being healthy (as a maintenance diet for people without special needs like losing weight, sure, I've seen that.) Even 30ish years ago, while "low fat" was prominent, a focus on lean protein sources as a main source of calories was common. And, "low carb" to the extreme has been the common recommendation, in various forms, since the late 1990s.
My personal experience is quite the opposite. When I did the whole low carb thing, I was having to intentionally supplement my calorie intake because I was eating 800-1000 calories per day otherwise which I felt was too low (my BMR at the time was ballpark 3000 calories, so figure burning around 3600/day even sedentary).
The only other time in my life that I've had to make a conscious effort to eat enough was when I was on prescription adderall in high school and would sometimes forget to eat for an entire day. Outside of that, I eat, and eat too much, honestly.
I quit the keto thing after about 6 months because, frankly, I missed pasta too much, but the whole appetite suppression thing with it is very real in my experience and is one of the most commonly reported side effects I've seen online.
You eat doritos, white pasta, white bread, pizza and Mt. Dew. Consume 2,000 calories per day.
I'll eat broccoli, chicken breasts, eggs, and bacon at 2,000 calories per day.
Let's compare results after six months. Can you lose weight by keeping your terrible diet below X calories - good luck with that - but yes you can, assuming you can handle what the hyper carb diet does to your body's sense of being full and energy levels. However we will not have the same results, and you can eat more calories in my diet than you can in yours, because to process my diet burns more calories than yours, and the protein in my diet will aid your muscle retention a lot more than the high sugar diet.
Hint: protein is a vastly superior intake vs junk carbohydrates. 300 calories from chicken are NOT used or processed by the body the same way as 300 calories from a Mt. Dew. Broccoli burns a lot of calories during the process of digestion relative to its calorie count.
Secondly, yes I can eat garbage like McDonald's and Wendy's and only eat 1500 calories/day and lose weight. That's exactly what I did.
This is horse shit.
Carbohydrates are very easy to transform to glucose, therefore you get a spike in glucose levels from a carb-reach meal. An excess of glucose gets converted and stored as fat. The same amount of calories consumed as fat or proteins would take much longer to process, thus not causing a spike in glucose level, thus not triggering a fat storage process.
> In fact, if you are eating decent food and keeping fat% at ~30-40, I guarantee you that you will have troubles eating more than 2500 kcal per day.
2500 calories per day is what I eat when I'm running a cut, and I'm usually hungry even after hitting my macros. Daily caloric needs are individual.
People interested in estimating their caloric needs should check out if it fits your macros: http://iifym.com/iifym-calculator/
The calculator will also suggest daily nutritional macros to hit depending on your goals (losing weight, maintaining, gaining weight etc).
I would also recommend http://www.myfitnesspal.com/ for tracking your calories and macros.
To that point, when I eat about 1500 a day, and feel fullish but will lose about 1lb a week. When I go to 2000 a day i start gaining weight.
Even if we assume a calorie is a calorie, and that what kind of calorie has no effect on how fast your body naturally burns them (and that's debatable), the body response may be such that you naturally exercise more if you eat a diet geared one way or another.
That is, the poster may find that after eating carbs, especially simpler ones, their energy spikes, but they're too full to comfortably exercise. But by the time they'd be comfortable exercising they're too tired, and they simply don't. Whereas with higher fat/protein, they feel less full, and/or maintain energy levels longer, and naturally exercise more. Or whatever.
Assuming that's a typo and you mean 2000-2500 at 50-60% carbs, that's not at all as implausible as some response seem to make it seem -- if it has an effect on your activity level. Its not implausible that a subtle effect that doesn't even consciously register could make a 500 calorie difference for someone who isn't actively tracking activity (a 1000 calorie difference is less likely without noticing the activity impact.)
This is obviously factually incorrect.
Relevant story: http://www.cnn.com/2010/HEALTH/11/08/twinkie.diet.professor/
Of course if you eat less calories than the bare minimum needed to sustain life, you will loose weight no matter what, but that is an unhealthy way of doing it and no sane nutritionist will risk advising you to do so.
On the other hand, it is actually possible to gain weight by restricting calories just a little. Humans did not evolve in an environment where superabundance of food required voluntary abstinence to keep in good shape. When you just cut calorie intake your body enters "starvation mode": metabolism slows down, non essential processes get suspended, you tire out more easily, etc. The result is that if you do not overcompensate with will force and do exercise, you will end up undercutting your calorie usage below your reduced calorie intake, and grow fast.
The body is wise: it knows when things begin to go bad, they always can get worse.
People say weightlifting works, but it only helps when you're already relatively skinny. I know, I tried. You can be strong and fat. People say running works. It has a small effect but it's nothing to write home about. My sister runs marathons and still struggles with her weight. The problem is that exercise is maybe 10% of the picture, whereas intake is the other 90%. It's easy to fool yourself into thinking you're making progress on your weight goals by exercising, then throwing it all away on extra snacks. People get caught up in chasing mushy health goals and forget about the hard empirical facts.