Many people who give dietary or nutritional advice continue to share the out-of-date “fact” that “calories in/calories out” is what matters when it comes to maintaining weight and health.

The real fact is: The quality of the calories matters more than the number of calories.

In one 12-week study, participants were divided into two groups. All participants were pre-diabetic and ate the same number of calories and the same ratio of fat, protein, and carbohydrates. The only way the foods differed in the two groups was that one group had rye bread (whole-kernel) and rye pasta, while the other group had oats, potatoes, and wheat.

At the end of the time allotted, the participants’ glucose was tested. They then underwent a biopsy of their subcutaneous fat, and their gene expression was examined.

The differences were remarkable. The participants who ate the rye products had smaller, smarter fat cells. These participants were also more sensitive to insulin. Lignans, a phytonutrient in rye, switched on genes that reverse diabetes and obesity, and turned off genes that contribute to poor health. At the same time, the lignans turned on many genes that promote good health.

In contrast, members of the group who ate the oats, potatoes, and wheat had 62 genes turned on that promote diabetes and obesity and increased their stress molecules, inflammation, and free radicals.

This study proves that it’s not the number calories or carbs you take in that matter most.  It’s the quality of those calories and carbs that we should focus on. The foods you consume can turn on healthy or unhealthy genes – the choice is yours. When you focus on powerful gene-altering foods – consisting of whole, fresh, REAL ingredients instead of manufactured products or fast food from a drive-through window – you can change your biology, balance your systems, lose weight, and feel great!

Read the full article here: Why Focusing on Calories Misses the Bigger Picture for Your Weight and Health