Are All Calories Equal?

This question pops up super regularly and you see proponents of either side arguing their opinion on social media. Unfortunately, regularly, the argument is often for attention/publicity more so than a real desire to educate.

The question is a ‘loaded’ one and needs more context.

Phil Learney summarises this perfectly-

‘Calories are only ‘Equal’ if we talk about them in an energetic sense.

Calories can be Nutrient dense, empty or all that goes in between.

  • ** Nutrient dense foods will make you feel better, perfrom better and maintain a consistent and healthy intake better. Likely leading to an improved quality of life’

If simply discussing energy, a calorie is merely a unit of energy and yes Calories in vs calories out will lead to an energy deficit (weight loss, in theory).

If we’re talking; Health, performance, longevity, quality of life & real world long term sustainable adherance, then no, calories arent created equal.

Whole, unprocessed, nutrient dense foods win out almost everytime in pursuit of your health & fitness goals.


-Ben.