The idea of a ‘negative-calorie’ food for weight loss has passed the test of time. The only problem is that this idea has never been supported by research. Though some foods have minimal amounts of calories, they still contain calories that are consumed within a day and should be counted as such.
The most widely purported ‘negative-calorie’ food is celery, followed closely by lettuce and cucumbers. The reason for this widespread belief is that celery is composed mainly of water and fiber. The basic idea is that since it is such a low-calorie food, digestion burns more calories than are contained within the food.
In reality, the thermal effect of celery is around 8%, with 100% needed to cancel out the foods caloric amounts. While a single celery stalk provides 6 calories to the body when consumed, it only takes one-half of a calorie to digest it. Meaning that the calories are still being compounded and without proper movement, a base metabolic rate will not remove those calories.
While ‘negative-calorie’ foods are a healthy low-calorie option, they shouldn’t be a primary source of nutrition. The reason these foods contain such little calories is they hold minimal nutritional value. It is important to pair these foods with more calorie rich foods to obtain nutrients needed for body maintenance.
Following extreme diets can be extremely detrimental to your body and the processes that go on within it. The key to successfully losing weight is creating a balanced diet and exercising regularly. When individuals undertake an extreme diet, such as relying solely on ‘negative-calorie’ foods, they aren’t receiving adequate nutrition.
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