Please read this article. blogs.scientificamerican.com/guest-blog/20
What I get from this article is that the more processed food is the easier it is for the body to digest that food and therefore the body can use in some cases all of those calories to fuel itself.
Where as when you eat real whole foods and either eat them raw or prepare them yourself the calories that are available for the body to use is less and varied depending on cooking time and temperature.
It also depends what kind and how much gut bacteria you have as to how many calories you will be able to use from each given food.
I personally find this fascinating because I know that eating just 20 calories more than the body needs every day over a ten 10 year period will lead to a 10 pound increase in weight at the end of those 10 years (when you do the math). So it seems entirely impossible that somehow I am able to maintain my weight, without tracking, with that degree of precision over a long period of time. There just has to be more at work there.
I'm not saying calories aren't important. Just that more attention needs to be paid to the source of those calories. Whole, natural foods should be the staple of a healthy diet.
What do you think?