Calorie Myth: Quality Matters More than Quantity

The Calorie Myth is a diet book written by Jonathan Bailor – a nutrition expert and former personal trainer.


This program is based on the idea that calories don’t matter when it comes to losing weight.

Bailor asserts that it is not the amount of calories you consume but rather what kinds of calories. He offers evidence that supports a different approach and provides readers with a practical plan to reset metabolism.

Calorie Myth Basics

First, The Calorie Myth explains the following:

  • The link between hormones and metabolism.
  • How diet influences hormone function.
  • How supposedly “healthy” foods cripple our ability to burn fat.
  • How to identify and eliminate toxic foods.
  • How to burn fat while eating more food.
  • Why we don’t need to eat less and exercise more.

Balancing Hormones and Boosting Metabolism

The Calorie Myth says that some foods are used to repair the body and fuel metabolism whereas others are stored as fat. The secret to losing weight is to select the foods that provide optimal nutrition and hormone balance.

He goes on to explain that the human body has a set point, which is the weight it naturally tends to stay at. This is regulated by your hormones.

When we eat a lot of sugar, starch, and unhealthy fats the body is not able to maintain a healthy set point. These foods have a “hormone-clogging” effect , which interferes with the efficiency of calorie burning.

The Quality of Calories is What Matters

The quality of calories varies dramatically and is determined by four factors: Satiety, Aggression, Nutrition, and Efficiency (SANE).

Satiety is how quickly a food makes you feel full.

Aggression is how likely calories are to be stored as body fat.

Nutrition is how many vitamins, minerals, essential amino acids, essential fatty acids and other nutrients are provided.

Efficiency is how easily calories are converted into body fat.

The Calorie Myth categorizes healthy foods as SANE and unhealthy foods as inSANE. Whether a calorie is high quality or low quality depends on where it fits on the SANEity spectrum.

Jonathan Bailor says the secret to successful weight loss is simple.

Just enjoy so much delicious healthful “SANE” foods so that you are too full for the “inSANE” foods.

Eat SANE foods in Abundance

The following foods are on the healthy end of the SANEity spectrum:

  • Nonstarchy vegetables
  • Nutrient-dense proteins
  • Whole-food fats
  • Low-fructose fruits

SANE foods fill you up quickly and keep you satisfied for a long time. SANE foods provide a lot of nutrients but few of them can be converted into body fat.

Even better, these foods trigger the release of fat-burning hormones and lower our set-point, which makes it easier to lose weight naturally.

Recommended Foods

Expect to Eat the following foods with The Calorie Myth
Chicken, turkey, salmon, sardines, prawns, grass-fed beef, bacon, eggs, cheese, Greek yogurt, protein powder, peanut butter, cashews, almonds, coconut milk, pears, berries, avocado, cauliflower, spinach, asparagus, beets, celery, zucchini, dark chocolate, coconut oil, butter, xylitol.

Possible Meal Plan Plan


Vanilla Blueberry Pancakes


Zucchini and Cherry Tomato Salad

Afternoon Snack

Cranberry Almond Bars


Mushroom Roast Chicken
Brussels with Leeks


Chocolate Berry Cream

High Intensity Interval Training Recommended

Eating less of your normal diet and doing more exercise will not repair hormonal imbalances. It may delay the onset of diabetes and slow down weight gain but the diet still destroys your metabolic balance. Exercise alone cannot undo that damage.

You can exercise smarter so you spend less time in the gym but achieve better results. This is achieved by undertaking a high intensity interval training program.

Costs and Expenses

The Calorie Myth: How to Eat More, Exercise Less, Lose Weight, and Live Better retails at $25.99.

Available from Amazon →


  • Does not require calorie counting.
  • Encourages consumption of a variety of healthy foods.
  • Supported by scientific research and endorsed by doctors at some of the most prestigious medical institutions.
  • Advocates a lifestyle approach to healthy weight management.


  • May be challenging to eliminate all sweet and starchy foods.
  • The workout may be too demanding for dieters who are not already in good shape or have physical injuries.
  • May take time to reach your target weight.

Quality of Calories is Key

The Calorie Myth aims to dispel the idea that you need to focus on calories to effectively burn fat.

Instead of restricting calorie intake and exercising excessively you can lose weight by eating nourishing foods and exercising intelligently.

 By Mizpah Matus B.Hlth.Sc(Hons)
  • Perry, B., & Wang, Y. (2012). Appetite regulation and weight control: the role of gut hormones. Nutrition & diabetes, 2(1), e26. study link
  • Drewnowski, A. (2005). Concept of a nutritious food: toward a nutrient density score. The American journal of clinical nutrition, 82(4), 721-732. study link


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