Finding Balance: Understanding How Calories Work

Researchers agree that America’s waistline is expanding, primarily because we consume more calories than we burn year after year.  Over the last several decades, the American diet has expanded to include larger portion sizes and foods higher in calories. At the same time, Americans have also become less physically active in their day-to-day lives. The typical American regularly consumes more calories than they burn during daily activities, and as a result, two-thirds of the adult American population are either overweight or obese.

The International Food Information Council Foundation’s Food & Health Survey continues to find that a majority of Americans are concerned about their weight. Still many of them remain confused about the role of calories in weight management and the overall impact of calorie balance on achieving a healthy weight.

This referenced document provides key insights on calories, energy balance, physical activity, the importance of meeting nutrient needs within the context of calorie intake as well as the importance of portion size.

Finding Balance: Understanding How Calories Work (PDF)