Which is more fattening – a glass of organic orange juice or a piece of fried bacon? Keep reading to find out. The answer is far from straight forward.
Are calories created the same?
To answer this question above, Sam Feltham (a qualified master personal trainer) made an interesting experiment on himself.
First, he ate 5794 calories daily where only 10% of those calories came from carbs. So this was a low-carb/high-fat diet which he consumed for 21 days. At the end of this period he only gained 1.3 kilograms (the prediction was that he would gain 7.3 kg based on the excess calorie consumption). Not only did he not gain the weight originally predicted but he also lost 2.5 cm off his waist! In other words, he lost fat and gained muscle.
Second, he ate the same 5794 calories daily but this time he switched to a high-carb/low-fat diet (64% of his calories came from carbs). After 21 days on this high-carb diet, Feltham gained 7.1 kilograms. Not only that, his waist ballooned by 9.14 cm!!! After only 3 weeks on a high-carb diet, he was turning into a fat ball, whereas the same period of time on a high-fat diet made him leaner and more muscular. Note that both diets had the same total caloric intake.
The conclusion? Calories are not created the same. If they come from carbs, you store them as fat. If they come from fat, you burn them off. Fat doesn’t make you fat. Carbohydrates do. So skip the orange juice and go for the bacon if you want to stay lean.