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New Study Suggests Counting Weekly Calories Instead of Daily

Smarter Eats: Think Weekly, Not Daily

When it comes to eating, I usually think about my diet on a day-to-day basis. Since I eat pretty healthy overall, eating like this seems to be OK. Unfortunately, this is not the case with everyone. A new study suggests that people's views on calorie consumption can result in a poor diet overall. The remedy? Look at what we eat on a weekly basis instead of a daily basis.

The study followed 600 individuals over a two-week period monitoring their eating habits, and found that 84 percent of participants viewed their diet in daily terms. If an individual had a really light breakfast, for instance, they tended to eat really heavy at lunch and/or dinner. In their minds, they felt they had earned extra calories, which gave them license to eat whatever they wanted the rest of the day. The problem is, the "earned" calories from all those heavy lunches and dinner don't disappear the next day — just because you have a light breakfast does not mean you should reward yourself with a high calorie or fatty dinner.

To hear more about the study's conclusions,

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The study suggests that instead of thinking about our diets in terms of daily calories consumed, we should be looking at our diets from a weekly standpoint instead. Researchers say that if we consider our meal choices for a week, it helps create awareness of those times when we may be overindulging versus not getting enough.

While many of you may already be eating in mindful, healthy ways, there are some individuals who struggle with finding a healthy, balanced diet. In light of this new research, coming up with a weekly meal plan might be a great way to improve your eating habits. Do any of you do this now? Share your advice below for our readers who are thinking about trying it out for themselves.

Image Source: Getty
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zeze zeze 6 years
I don't really get it, as long as the numbers are the same, who cares how you think about it. If you have a light breakfast and indulge in the evening and know you got 1700 calories lets say, even if those calories dont go away the next morning it still means you can still get 1700 more (assuming that's your goal).
ohbaby7 ohbaby7 6 years
I try to think of my health as whole weekly..if I eat this donut today and go into a food coma, I will work out on wednesday!then I set a reminder on my phone so that I maintain a balance of gym days and fat days
ohbaby7 ohbaby7 6 years
I try to think of my health as whole weekly.. if I eat this donut today and go into a food coma, I will work out on wednesday! then I set a reminder on my phone so that I maintain a balance of gym days and fat days
Spectra Spectra 6 years
I'm more of a daily thinking person, but I also tend to eat a similar amount of food each day. So what I eat for the week is pretty steady for the most part.
TiVo TiVo 6 years
I generally count my calories on a daily basis, but I keep the whole week in mind. I made a weekly list of all my meals because it helps me make healthy and budget-friendly choices at the store. Also, I keep in mind that cheat meal (or two) that I get on the weekends. I guess a hybrid works best for me.
chillchic chillchic 6 years
That's why I usually eat my heaviest meals ealier. The later you it, the moe likely that those caloies will transfer over to the next day.
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