What’s the deal with calories? Is it necessary to calorie-count in order to maintain a goal weight, as per the old accepted adage that calories-in and calories-out should ideally be in equilibrium? A calorie is defined as “the quantity of food capable of producing 4.19 joules of energy/heat when oxidized in the body” (Merriam-Webster Dictionary) (1).  So, it’s the theoretical energy potential of each gram of food we consume. It’s important to note that it’s not something inherently evil; it’s simply an arbitrary measure that we use to quantify how much energy we can extract from food.