Susan works in our office. She brought in half a dozen delicious carrot muffins into the office Friday. Todd had one and decided to bring the left overs home for the weekend. He did not want them to go to waste. Carrot muffins, they must be healthy. Full of carrot and whole wheat. They looked very tempting. I looked at the packaging and decided to read the ingredients and the calorie counts. 430 calories. Wow… That is a lot. For the record, Todd knows a great deal about nutrition, he just doesn’t always practice what he preaches.
What does 430 calories equal in exercise terms?
Cycling for 60 min at around 12-13 mph.
Running for about 60 min at around 6 mph.
Swimming for about 45 min.
So after reading this, I decided to pass on the muffin. I don’t really have a desire for sweets, but I do love fruit.
I often have patients who tell me that they cannot lose weight because their knee or hip hurts. They tell me that they cannot exercise to burn off the calories. However, we know that it is not so much the exercise but the food that we choose to eat that has the most impact on our body composition. There are many benefits to exercising, for example, exercise is beneficial to your heart, your energy level and your mind. It is also true that the best solution to health is a combination of eating well and exercise. One without the other would not help you achieve your goal. The next time you reach for the ‘healthy’ carrot muffin, stop and think twice.
Dr. Olivia Cheng