Counting calories is not the way to deal with childhood obesity

When it comes to eating better, one of the very least useful things you can do, in my opinion, is count calories.

Counting calories, and specifically reducing calories might seem like a great way to become healthy and to lose weigh. But the simple fact is that calories alone are not a good way to place a value on a food.

In this podcast – number 5 (whoop whoop!) – Lisa Beasley, the amazing mindful eating coach and I, a slightly ranty nutritional therapist, get stuck into the latest campaign around reducing calories for children to reduce childhood obesity.

We do get a little bit feisty about this one – probably because my experience as a nutritionist is that dieting, and counting calories as a child never works and Lisa remembers being worried about foods when she was younger, and realises that it simply didn’t help. Do take a listen and let us know what you think!


“They are literally banging on the wrong door, shouting at the wrong people, using the wrong language to try to solve a problem which has got nothing to do with calories.” Me getting a little bit ranty in this episode.

The reason that we don’t go into detail about the RIGHT way to deal with childhood obesity in this podcast is quite simple: there isn’t one simple, straightforward answer. Every single child is different, and needs a different approach. What works for one child might not be what another child needs – that’s why just telling everyone to count calories is pointless.

If you are concerned about your child, first of all: please don’t tell them that they are overweight. Don’t make them feel bad for liking the foods that they like. And don’t, please, for the love of all things tasty in the world, put your child on a diet.

I can help you and your child eat better. To find out what foods are going to give your child the nourishment he or she needs to be healthy, happy and well (regardless of how ‘big’ they are) and Lisa can do a stellar job of helping you change your mindset around food. Do get in touch with either of us –Lisa or Claire – we’d love to help.

Leave a comment