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Is Counting Calories Bad for My Health?

Reviewed by: Mary L. Gavin, MD

Is counting calories a good thing or is it bad for my health?

It's always good to be aware of the amount and quality of the food you're eating, especially with overweight and obesity becoming more and more of a problem. That doesn't mean you need to pick up everything you eat and count the calories, though. Not only will that take forever, but it's not necessary in most cases.

Unless your doctor tells you to count calories for health reasons, focus instead on eating a balanced diet, choosing the right portion sizes, and limiting junk food and sugary beverages.

One thing you should count are your fruit and veggie servings. Be sure to get at least five servings of fruits and veggies a day. Lean protein, low-fat diary, and whole grains are also good choices.

*Names have been changed to protect user privacy.

Reviewed by: Mary L. Gavin, MD
Date reviewed: September 2014