Counting calories, yo-yo diets, and beyond…

According to an article in today’s (5-5-11) USA Today, only about 9% of Americans report counting calories. Nanci Hellmich reported in the article that “Research shows that people who keep track of calories lose twice as much weight as those who don’t.”

J. Morris Hicks -- I never count calories, I don't even own a scale, I have a 32-inch waist, am 6 feet tall and have weighed a constant 155 pounds for the past 8 years -- down from a high of 180 before I learned the secret of simply eating the natural food for our species.

But what she didn’t report is that studies also show that dieting to lose weight fails in well over 90% of the cases. Oh sure, people lose a little weight while “dieting” but then put it right back on within a few months or a few years — in the vast majority of the cases.

Clearly the answer to weight-control is not counting calories or going on fad low carb diets like Atkins, South Beach and now Dukan — the simple answer is eating the right food for our species. If we are deriving the vast majority of our calories from whole plants (in nature’s package), it is nearly impossible to consume too many calories — unless you just eat the high fat plants foods like nuts, olives, and avocado. Here’s what the article had to say about calorie consumption levels in the USA (See link to complete article at the end of this post.)

Adult calorie requirements vary from about 1,400 to 1,600 a day for a small sedentary woman, 2,000 to 2,200 for a sedentary man, about 3,000 for a teenage boy going through a growth spurt and 4,000 or more calories a day for a highly trained endurance athlete, says Robyn Flipse, a registered dietitian in Bradley Beach, N.J., who has worked with thousands of people to help them lose weight.

We agree that most Americans are eating too many calories — simply because they’re eating the wrong food. We have found with clients on our simple and powerful 4-Leaf Program that when they load up on the whole grains, fruits, vegetables, greens and legumes — they don’t need to count calories, they just eat all they want — when they want.

And, if they have a lot of weight to lose, they quickly begin losing it effortlessly at the rate of 2 to 3 pounds a week. And after experiencing vibrant health for a year or so, over 90% of them would never even consider going back to their toxic western diet of the past.

The only calorie counting involved in the 4-Leaf Program is during the orientation process of learning what constitutes a 4-Leaf meal (deriving over 80% of its calories from whole plants). After a week or two of practice, they know exactly how to prepare a 4-Leaf meal and exactly how to turn a 1-Leaf meal into a 4-Leaf meal at any fine restaurant. Visit our 4-Leaf page to learn more.

Of course, most of our clients begin the 4-Leaf Program to promote “vibrant health” and they quickly begin to fall in love with the health benefits (beyond weight-loss) that result from simply eating the right food for our species.

J. Morris Hicks with son J. Stanfield Hicks -- the creators of the simple, reasonable, flexible and POWERFUL "4-Leaf Program"

Articles like this one today have zero beneficial effect in my opinion. Like the recent Dr. Oz review of the Dukan Diet, they just perpetuate the “yo-yo” dieting that millions of Americans are doing all the time. While millions are trying to force their bodies into ketosis (with Dukan) or depriving their bodies of enough nutrients with most of the so-called “weight-loss” diets — the obesity levels continue to rise.

Animals in the wild don’t get fat or obese. And they don’t count calories. They simply eat the right food for their species — and they don’t need a scientist or dietician to tell them what that is. We could learn a lot from the animal kingdom. They also live in “harmony” with nature and the rest of the planet — so should we.

If you like what you see here, you may wish to join our periodic mailing list. Also, for help in your own quest to take charge of your health, you might find some useful information at our 4-Leaf page. From the seaside village of Stonington, Connecticut – Be well and have a great day.

If you’d like to order our book on Amazon,  visit our BookStore now.

—J. Morris Hicks…blogging daily at

PS: Occasionally an unauthorized ad may appear beneath a blog post. It is controlled by WordPress (a totally free hosting service). I do not approve or personally benefit whatsoever from any ad that might ever appear on this site. I apologize and urge you to please disregard. 

Study: Few Americans accurately monitor calories (USA Today article)

About J. Morris Hicks

A former strategic management consultant and senior corporate executive with Ralph Lauren in New York, J. Morris Hicks has always focused on the "big picture" when analyzing any issue. In 2002, after becoming curious about our "optimal diet," he began a study of what we eat from a global perspective ---- discovering many startling issues and opportunities along the way. In addition to an MBA and a BS in Industrial Engineering, he holds a certificate in plant-based nutrition from the T. Colin Campbell Center for Nutrition Studies, where he has also been a member of the board of directors since 2012. Having concluded that our food choices hold the key to the sustainability of our civilization, he has made this his #1 priority---exploring all avenues for influencing humans everywhere to move back to the natural plant-based diet for our species.
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1 Response to Counting calories, yo-yo diets, and beyond…

  1. Chris says:

    “Ketone Diets”……give me a break! Ketosis is not healthy, it exists as a survival mechanism….period. Long-term ketosis is not only unhealthy… completely lacks any common sense. Simply eat the correct foods for our species and by default we live congruently with nature, not against it. Seems so simple it offends the mind. Unfortunately many people expect “truths” to be wrapped up in a complex and researched esoteric system that is only understood by “experts.”

    Truth be told, if a “truth” cannot be explained and understood by a child, then it’s probably baloney (which you shouldn’t eat by the way). Sad that wild animals and insects understand health better than the common man. The human brain has thrown out all common sense and become the sickest species on the planet.

    It’s time for a revolution Hicks!…….keep up the good work!

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