question for the blog readers

I wish someone could explain to me how food becomes fuel which is either used or stored in your body.

I mean if I eat three pounds of food in one day (for example, I have no idea about the number), how does that translate into my body?

I would assume that if I ate 3 pounds of food that I could at most gain 3 pounds of weight. But I might be wrong. I don't really understand it. And I am having problems forumlating a set of search terms to figure out how it works.

Does that make sense? What is the relationship between the amount of food eaten and a body's weight?


Pam Rutter said...

I'll bet Jordan could shed some science/biology light on this topic!

Anonymous said...

A comment from a reader: This where calorie stuff, your own metabolism, and other variables come in so there's no real easy answer because the answer is: "depends!" In your example, 3 pounds of food could mean more than 3 pounds of weight gain or it could mean zero weight gain. Depends on the food and how your body processes it.

Example: white bread impacts the body far differently than whole grain brown bread. Eating lots of white bread will make you fatter than the same amount of brown bread because white bread is not processed in the same way as the brown stuff and also turns into more sugar when it is processed. Vegetables are processed by the body more quickly and differently than cupcakes. Vegetables do not raise your body's sugar levels like cupcakes do, so pound-for-pound, there's a world of difference. You could probably eat 10 pounds of vegetables and gain less weight than 1 pound of cupcakes (or breadcrumb stuffing) because of the sugars and how the body stores and uses each type of food.

That's one of the theories of the low/no-carb diets - take away the carbs and you have fewer sugars after the food is processed because starchy food turns to higher amounts of sugars than non-starchy foods do.

Enjoy those mini carrots!

Katerina said...

Well, here's my understanding of it:

Everything around you is made of energy in different forms. So is the human body. In order for your body to survive, function, move around etc, it needs energy in the form of food, i.e. protein, fat or carbohydrates. That's what the calorie measures anyway: Energy. One calorie is the amount of energy needed to raise the temperature of 1 ml of water by 1 degree Celsius.

So, as soon as you eat food, the body breaks it down and converts it into heat so that you are able to move around, digest your food, think, breathe, read, etc. The waste material of this process is then discharged from the body.

However, if you eat more than what your body requires for its needs then this extra food is stored in the body as fat. So of course it is only this extra, additional amount of food that makes you fat. Each body has different needs according to genetic/emotional predisposition but also lifestyle demands. So how much food and what kind of food each person needs varies widely.

I suppose you have to get to know your body well in order to be able feed it what it really needs.

Katerina said...

Oh, and for more detailed information on exactly what happens to the food in your body, I found this article interesting:


Unknown said...

It depends on the calorie content of the poundage of food you ate. 3 lbs of celery would actually require more calories to digest than it would translate into weight gain. 3 lbs of ice cream could very well translate into 3 lbs or more gained. The anonymous poster to the left has it exactly right when she/he talk about sugar, carbs, proteins and fats.