What is an empty calorie? An empty calorie refers to the overall value it can or cannot provide.
Take, for example, two different kinds of drinks (e.g. Milk vs. Cola) that provide the same amount of calories.
Sodas, on the one hand, provide a lot of calories in form of simple sugars but they are “empty calories” because you are getting no:
- minerals (e.g. calcium, iron)
On the other hand, if you choose a glass of milk instead of the soda, you will receive a similar amount of calories but you also get
with those calories.
Therefore, you are getting more important nutrients that your body can use (immune function, proper nervous system activity, release of energy, protein synthesis etc.) for the same amount of calories.
That’s why it is advisable to stay away from “empty calories”. In other words, you can be in a caloric surplus but in a nutrient deficit at the same time.
Choose foods with high density!
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