If you’ve been active on social media in recent months, you may have heard about the CICO diet. People say it helps them stay fit without having to avoid any foods they like. So, what is the CICO diet and can it really help you lose weight?
What Is the CICO Diet?
The CICO in the name of this diet stands for “calories in, calories out.” This also describes the main (and only) rule of this diet. Namely, your calorie intake has to be equal or lower than the number of calories you burn each day.
Based on this description, you may say that it’s just calorie counting under a different name. And you’d be right, as that’s exactly what it is. There’s no diet plan or a list of foods you should avoid. You can eat whatever you like, as long as you burn all your daily calories.
Does It Really Work?
A few studies have proved that counting calories for weight loss may actually work. According to one of them, you could lose about 7 pounds a year if you follow this method. But the proof on the CICO diet remains anecdotal.
As you may know, a good diet isn’t only supposed to help you lose weight. It also has to help you adopt healthy eating habits. But because the CICO diet doesn’t require you to avoid unhealthy foods, it fails to do this important thing.
What’s more, it doesn’t make a difference between good and bad calories. For years, experts have been saying that not all calories are the same. This has to do mainly with how your body absorbs them. As such, different calories have a different effect on your appetite, hormones, and ultimately – your health.
The Final Word
Scientific evidence and personal testimonies suggest that counting calories could help you lose weight. But if you opt for this method, make sure to eat healthy, nutrient-rich foods. After all, this is the only way to develop healthy habits and prevent weight gains in the future.