Written by:

Nicholas Caracandas, founder and head coach of Diabetic Athletic Lifestyle Accelerator




So What is Energy Balance?

Energy is another word for “calories.”

Your energy balance is the balance of calories consumed through eating and drinking compared to calories burned through physical activity. What you eat and drink is ENERGY IN. What you burn through physical activity is ENERGY OUT.

You burn a certain number of calories just by breathing air and digesting food. You also burn a certain number of calories through your daily routine. For example, children burn calories just being students—walking to their lockers, carrying books, etc. and adults burn calories walking to the bus stop, going shopping, and at work etc.

An important part of maintaining energy balance is the amount of ENERGY OUT (physical activity) that you do.

It should be obvious that people who are more physically active burn more calories than those who are not as physically active.

Here are 3 different scenarios for 3 very common outcomes or goals:

  1. The same amount of ENERGY IN (calories consumed) and ENERGY OUT  (calories burned) over time = weight staying the same.
  1. More calories IN(consumed) than OUT (exercise) over time = weight gain.
  1. More calories OUT(exercise) than IN (eaten) over time = weight loss.

Your ENERGY IN and OUT doesn’t have to balance every day. It’s having a balance over time that will help you stay at a healthy weight for the long term. Balancing your total calories PER WEEK ( 7x daily totals), is a far better approach because it allows some days to deviate from the perfect plan.

Personally, I calculate the calories for clients to balance out over a period of 7 days rather than day-to-day. This allows for adherence and absolute freedom and room for any indulgences and joys (Because life is worth it).

Balancing your calories in versus calories out on a daily basis is a good idea as time is an expensive commodity and to find out that you have just been winging it over a period of 3 months without tracking your day to day calories will inevitably slow down potential results. We can only manage what we measure.

Something to keep in mind when tracking calories is that we need to reduce the calories and NOT the food. This is where so many go wrong. Calories go down but food intake needs to remain high. This allows you to be limiting calories while being able to eat and be merry (like all people should).

PRo TIP: Calories fro fibre are not counted towards calorie totals. This means that although broccoli has a carb content ( which display as calories), these carbs are mostly from fibre which means they are almost non-existent.

Energy Balance in Real Life

Think of it as balancing your “lifestyle budget.” For example, if you know you and your family will be going to a party and may eat more high-calorie foods than normal, then you may wish to eat fewer calories on the day or for a few days before so that it balances out.

Or, you can increase your physical activity level for the few days before or after the party, so that you can burn off the extra energy.

In an ideal scenario, you would do bot. Decrease in your intake and increase your activity.

The same applies to your kids. If they’ll be going to a birthday party and eating cake and ice cream—or other foods high in fat and added sugar—help them balance their calories the day before and/or after by providing ways for them to be more physically active.

Here’s another way of looking at energy balance in real life.

Eating just 150 calories more a day than you burn can lead to an extra 5 pounds or 2.5kg over 4 – 6 months. That’s a gain of 10 pounds or 4.5kg a year.

150 calories equate to 1 bite of a chocolate bar, 3 apples, a pinch of almonds or 1.5 tablespoons of olive oil!

If you don’t want this weight gain to happen, or you want to lose the extra weight, you can either reduce your ENERGY IN or increase your ENERGY OUT. Doing both is the best way to achieve and maintain healthy body weight.

Next step is your protein intake and training stimulus.

For more info visit www.diabeticathletic.com and use my calorie calculator made specifically for type 1 diabetics inside my FREE TRIAL.

You can also chat to me directly HERE

Yours in Strength and Diabetes,

Nicholas Caracandas

The Reality Of Nutrition

Written by:

Nicholas Caracandas, founder and head coach of Diabetic Athletic Lifestyle Accelerator



Principles All have to do with your goals. If you’re needing to add muscle mass – Your main principles after sorting out your nutrition will all have to do with Stimulus (as in training stimulus). You can’t do park runs or yoga as your training stimulus and expect to build significant muscle mass or muscle tone.

Your principles for fat loss are what we call thermodynamics. Calories In Vs Out.

If you have ever been overweight, or know of anybody that is overweight it is because of this principle. Regardless of their opinions, purely because this isn’t a matter of opinion, and rather one of undeniable scientific, proven facts.

More calories coming in than going out. Not too many carbs, or fats, because you’re not vegan or because you missed a Zumba class….You ate too much and your body didn’t require the amount of energy you ate for that day, week, and month.

On a timeline: between you and the mentioned principals are things called methods (pictured below).


Let’s break down some popular diets, after all the marketing talk has been stripped away:

The Ketogenic diet –  is a method, intermittent fasting is a method. Low carb high fats is a method. Atkins is also just a method.

Every diet you choose is and always will be a METHOD to achieve a result through a common principle … a principle called “The law of thermodynamics”. 

Now we can use the word “method” to explaining the following it should be easier to understand…

Regardless of the method you choose, one principle will ALWAYS be present:  If you wish to lose body fat, YOU MUST CONSUME LESS ENERGY THAN YOU EXPEND!

Not less food consumption – less ENERGY consumption.

Let that sink in for a second. It doesn’t matter if you choose intermittent fasting or the cake and cookie diet… You have to put calories on the top of the priority list. Your chosen method will always be 2nd to what we call the principles.

You burn a certain number of calories a day. Just by living. You cannot exceed that amount if you want to lose weight.

The bottom line is, if you want to lose body fat, YOU MUST CONSUME LESS ENERGY (CALORIES) THAN YOU EXPEND (BURN). This can be done by eating less, moving more or in an ideal situation, you will do both.

It’s helpful to understand that the reason humans can store body fat in the first place is so that we have a readily-available source of fuel in the event of famine, being stranded on an island or world war 3.

We are designed to survive and to store energy. Females are designed to store more energy than their male counterparts, primarily because females are responsible for the human race. It takes 50 000 calories to carry and give birth. Your body knows this, it’s wired in your genetic code.

If your plan is set up for you to lose half a kilo or 1 pound of fat every 7 days and you have been “good” Monday to Friday maintaining your calorie deficit (fewer calories eaten than calories burned), and you go out on a weekend and overeat by 1500 calories if that overindulgence is larger than your weekly deficit ( ie the past 5 days of effort ), even by 150 calories you have sabotaged your entire 7 days efforts, and will not lose any weight for that week.

**See image above

ANY method or “diet” that makes it easier for you to stick to the calorie allowances is a “good” choice for you.

We are all different — some people find that intermittent fasting really helps them to maintain a caloric deficit long-term,

WHY? , because they don’t like eating breakfast. Or they just don’t have time in the morning. Who Ultimately, your choice is yours. There’s no point making you choose a method that doesn’t suit your lifestyle, yet people do this because “Susan the lady down the road” swears by it.

I am not here to tell you that any methods are better than others, because they’re not. The one you can stick to is the best method for you.  As long as you understand the principles and how they differ and apply to the methods and you can stick to your chosen method.

Some people need strict rules, such as extreme fitness competitors and others do better with more flexible approaches (such as Flexible Dieting or “If It Fits Your Macros”).

Let me just say this: Have you ever seen a fitness model or physique model get readt for a show without paying attention to their daily energy (calorie) intake?

Let me answer that for you… It’s a strong “hell no”.

The point is you can GAIN body fat on any or all of these methods (or diets) if you eat too many calories relative to your specific needs.

Even if a food is dubbed as “healthy”, generally speaking, these very foods are caloric bombs that will cause your total daily caloric intake to be over and above what is required for fat loss.

A handful of cashews or a bottle of red wine = 450 -550 calories. As far as calories go…. And fat -loss goes… these two choices are the same when your energy balance is concerned. Your body won’t discriminate.

Your body has a storage capacity. Like a cup of coffee. This is termed as your basal metabolic rate or (BMR). Your cup is not the same size as the person next to you.

Every time you drink from your cup its like movement. The cup empties and you can put more coffee in it. The more you drink per day the more coffee you can put in the cup. The amount you drink per day is equivalent to the amount times you get up off your ass and move.

Every time you put something in your mouth you are filling up the cup of coffee. If you don’t move enough you cup overflows. If you’re trying to lose fat – This creates a mess I call calorie surplus. The mug overflows and we have a classic case of overconsumption and under usage. Which is a fancy way of saying “ you get fatter”.

The magic diets, pills, lean in 15 books are the same promises as little coffee fairies that come and drink your coffee for you. It’s not possible. You have to do the movement or you get fat.

If you want to pour more coffee (CALORIES), in your mug (BODY), than it can handle, you have to drink (MOVE) more!


The BEST dietary approach is the method of your choice that you can do without fail. ADHERENCE is the key component.

Exercise accelerates results from obeying the principles.

There are no magic tricks – there is no miracle supplement, superfood, meal-timing secret, or any other way to cheat the system.

You need to eat less energy than your body needs, and you need to do it long enough to lose the body fat you want to lose.

Doing this is uncomfortable, and there’s no way around that fact.

It’s hard to do, and that’s evident by the large segment of the population that struggle with this problem and never achieve their goals.

Once you can accept this fact, coupled with the understanding that it doesn’t matter about the diets name or how well it has been packaged and marketed – the diet will always need to obey calories and how much you eat versus how active you are.

Diabetes can be difficult – I can obviously relate (type 1 for 3 decades). With the right kind of help, guidance and support this can all change in as little as 1 week.

Let’s look at it this way: Accounting is something I found very hard to do at school. Yes, I’ve got the basics down (I actually did accounting through to my matric year). I can balance my ledgers, however, when it comes to the fine-tuning, my monthly and yearly taxes and my VAT, I hire people to take care of it for me. Why?… Well because they are better at it than me, I’m busy and I have peace of mind it’s in capable hands.

If you’re like me and prefer to have peace of mind knowing you’re on a plan that has your best interests at heart, my FREE TRIAL is a great place to start. You’ll get access to some amazing training plans and workouts, nutrition plans, calorie calculators and my fat-loss mini series for diabetics.

If you need help with something a bit more bespoke and customised with your nutrition and online personal training and you’re looking to achieve the fat loss and diabetic goals you’re looking for then simply speak to me and let’s discuss your goals.

You can message me anytime here or comment below if you have any questions or need some advice. I am always just a message away!

Yours in Diabetic Confidence,

Nicholas Caracandas

The Key To Lifelong Fat Loss

Written by:

Nicholas Caracandas, founder and head coach of Diabetic Athletic Lifestyle Accelerator


The key to lifelong fat loss lies with you and your ability to grasp the basics. This article is going to explain the single most important fact when it comes to diets.

Once you understand the difference between diets and methods you’ll be armed and ready to go ahead and make the best choices regarding the right diet or method for you. Just by including this lesson into your arsenal of tools with diabetes, you’ll be able to achieve fat loss and take it one step further than most people living with diabetes ever do.

People are so often misled by diets said to work better than others when in actual fact it’s all just marketing hype and gimmicks. At the end of the day, you get mislead and pay the price.

I’ve already explained the importance of choosing a diet that you can stick too and il be saying it many times over in this fat-loss video series. The reason for this is because I’ve lost count as to how many old clients of mine have moved countries, used cheaper trainers, gone on silly meal plan and diets and forgotten this very lesson only to come back where they started asking for help again.

If you want to stop starting over and over again – stay tuned, take note and finish all 8 videos in this series, and I can guarantee you a better chance at success. If you’d like something a little extra, click the link in the description and sign up to my FREE trial. You’ll get calorie calculators, protein calculators, insulin to carb ratio calculators, meal plans, guides and strategies as well as loads of training plans to use and enjoy, and all for free.

Now.. We’ve spoken about adherence and making sustainable choices.  This is honestly something so simple and so powerful in its ability to produce the desired effect. We stick with what we enjoy, and finding a nutritional strategy you enjoy, is more than half the battle.

I want to make sure you realise the importance of your choices as well as the fact that googling a diet is not going to get you the results you want regardless of how well packaged,  marketing & sold these diets are. Remember, most diets will work short term. That’s the truth. But at what cost.

Most of them will cause you to give up things you enjoy and as a buy product you will inevitably stop doing that diet. You get promised fast results I get that, but read between the lines – what you dont get told is that you’re giving up your lifestyle and are just another quick buck.

5% fat loss isn’t ever worth sacrificing 80% lifestyle and so, I want to simplify and help you understand what a diet actually is.

I want you to put your self at the beginning of a timeline. Just draw a line on a page put yourself on the left, and place something called “principles or methods” in the middle, and then your goals at the other end.

In order for you to get to your goal, you will need to apply certain principles. Depending on your goals the principles are going to be different. For muscle growth, it’s going to come down to stimulus. As in training stimulus. For fat loss it’s going to be Thermodynamics. Which is the law of In Versus out.

Yes that’s right, Calorie deficit you’ve heard it before and this course is going to teach you why to apply it, and how to apply it .

If you take any diet you have ever heard of, ever seen, even a diet you read about on an Instagram story or perhaps have a friend who told you about some magical new diet he or she has tried… Once broken down to its bones you’ll learn that each and every diet will obey the law of thermodynamics. Every single one!!

The rule that states calories coming in or eaten, must be less than the calories being burned via daily activity if you are to lose weight.

Any diet that has ever worked for anyone, long term and short term has done so by having them be in a caloric deficit.

In order for you to get to your goal, you will need to apply a method. If we list some diets and put them between you and your ultimate goal, they will get listed in a category called “METHODS”

For example:

Keto or ketogenic diets – Are just a method that obeys one principle – calorie deficit.

Keto is low carb, in fact, NO carb. On average your daily consumption is probably sitting at 40-60% carbs. Start keto, cut out 40% of your intake, and all of a sudden you’ve got a deficit.

Its sold as a new miracle diet however  It obtains fat loss through the principle of fewer calories being consumed versus calories you burn via daily activity.

The keto diet is marketed as a carb-free diet. You’ve deleted a food group .. ALL CARBS. It’s not a magic diet!  You’ve stopped eating a food that you most probably overeat on a daily basis.. Stop carbs and boom.. A calorie deficit is achieved… but for how long?

More about this in video 6.

Herbalife – Another popular way to get you to delete food from your life and achieve magic fat loss. Except it’s not magic. It’s a smart way to sell you a product or diet that creates a calorie deficit in order to lose weight – Although I dont like it, it obtains the same result through the same means – the principle remember.  Less food in = fat loss via a caloric deficit.

The main problem is that you’re consuming Shakes instead of food and that’s not sustainable. Therefore your fat loss (if any), cannot and will not be sustained.

Once the method ends, ao do the results.

Intermittent fasting – Different method –  People sing “hey i do Intermittent fasting, Im skipping breakfast and losing weight”. “This is the best diet in the world “…. You guessed it …Thermodynamics, Principle..

This method has you missing a portion of your day and without telling you its making you follow the one principle of fat loss… Calorie deficit.

By missing a portion of your day (let’s be blunt youre deleting a portion of your day and making sure you dont eat in that time frame ), which means you will get through the day having eaten less food.

Weight watchers, paleo diet, slimming world, detox’s, juice diets, LCHF.. You name it … they are all just methods that obey one simple principle. Even the vegan diets.. think about it… all of a sudden you can’t eat anything other than vegetables. You’ll eat more food, because the volume of vegetables is greater than the caloric amounts, and so you eat more food while consuming fewer calories. It’s not magic, it’s not that vegan diets are the key… it’s the fact you started maintaining that calorie deficit using a method.

Once you can understand this you will be able to choose a method that appeals to you in order to lose weight. A method to get you to your goal.

Since they are all in line with the same principle all you need to do is choose a method you will never have to stop doing. That is the key.

Choosing a method like the ketogenic diet (no carbs ever again), may benefit a diabetic from a sugar level perspective, but ask yourself this … can you sustain having no carbohydrates ever again?

No carbs are going to cause insulin resistance in any case, and as a type 1 diabetic, keto is not a good long term idea. Just ask your specialist before trolling the comments.

I am not here to say which method is better than the next. What I want you to learn is that different methods will work for different people. All methods work short term, and your own specific method will work for you long term as long as you obey that 1 principle of fat loss.

The bottom line here is:

Never start a diet that will one day come to an end.

If you’d like instant access to my FREE TRIAL of the Diabetic Athletic Lifestyle Accelerator Program, you can make use of the diabetic friendly training plans, nutrition plans, workouts, calorie calculators and insulin on boards calculators all designed to help you dominate your diabetes… simply click HERE now and enjoy!

Yours in Strength,

Nicholas Caracandas




Reversing Pre-Diabetes & Obesity

Written by:

Nicholas Caracandas, founder and head coach of Diabetic Athletic Lifestyle Accelerator


About 1,900 years ago, one of the most celebrated Greek physicians, described diabetes as “a melting down of the flesh and limbs into the urine“.



Diabetes is a group of metabolic diseases characterized by raised levels of glucose in the blood. It occurs when the body can’t produce enough insulin or simply can’t use the insulin it produces effectively. Insulin, which is a hormone manufactured in the pancreas which is an organ, assists with the transport of glucose from the bloodstream into the body’s cells for use as energy.

There are three main types of diabetes:

Type 1 Diabetes results from the pancreas failing to produce enough insulin. This type of diabetes is not really caused by poor lifestyle choices.   

Type 2 Diabetes is a condition of defective insulin signalling. This can often be a byproduct of poor lifestyle choices.   

Gestational Diabetes is a condition where women without previously diagnosed diabetes exhibit high blood glucose ..or  (blood sugar) levels during pregnancy, especially in the third trimester.

There are other types of diabetes like type 3(Alzheimer’s), lady 1.5 and diabetes that is caused by pancreatic disease, and a few more. 

 Obesity, Pre diabetics and type 1 diabetics are who I work with the most. 

When insulin isn’t produced or acts ineffectively, glucose remains circulating in the blood, leading to a condition known as hyperglycemia. Long-term hyperglycemia can result in the dysfunction and failure of various organs and systems, including the eyes, kidneys, nerves, heart and blood vessels.

Treatment for diabetes aims to keep blood glucose levels as close to normal as possible to reduce the risk of developing complications. Treatments vary depending on the type of diabetes and Lifestyle modification in conjunction with medications like insulin are often needed – and is the very reason I came up with the Diabetic Athletic triangle of control. The focus should be on Training and nutrition together with medication. 


To reverse prediabetes, you’ll first need to realise and come to peace with the fact that it needs to be done. It is a matter of a life and death.

If you’re dealing with obesity or pre-diabetes it is no less dangerous than any other life-threatening disease and Knowing your opponent is half the battle.

Obesity can be reversed, so can pre-diabetes. And only you can make the change so once you realise you need to save your own life, so you can be the best possible version of of yourself for those you love most, at least you have the tools right here to do so.

Also, take it from me – diabetes isn’t fun and games. I don’t mind it at all if I’m being honest, but I dedicate more time to my well being and I consider myself very lucky to have built a life that allowed me to study nd work in the strength, health and wellness profession.

As a general rule of thumb losing 10kg or 22lbs, is the start you need to reverse obesity and pre diabetes. It’s less about the 10kg oe 22lbs, and more about the lifestyle and habits that will be learned for that weight to be lost.

You see, losing this weight is no easy task and adopting good habits and achieving this goal, you’ll learn about what is needed to carry on losing fat % and regaining a positive, winning mindset, and a body that starts working for you, again.

These habits that are built while trying to ensure weight loss, fat loss and lean muscle gain, along with the proper knowledge and education about how to lose the weight and keep it off forever are what will inevitably set you up for greater fat loss and a healthier, happier, longer and more confident life. A life without diabetes, obesity and all the ailments that that are so closely linked to obesity.  

It’s important to highlight that the best diet in the world will always be the one you can stick to. If you adopt any kind of methods that cause you to lose weight or gain muscle, you must realise that as soon as you stop doing the very diet and process or method that helped you achieve the results, you’ll lose those results.

There aren’t many guarantees in life – but this is one of them.

So for you to successfully lose weight, gain muscle, reverse your obesity or pre diabetic state, you’ll need to learn what actually matters, what causes fat loss and how you can apply these teachings in a way that doesnt restrict your quality of life. The more restrictive a diet is the less chance of adherence you’ll have to that chosen diet.

Simply put: You need a diet and strategy that will never need to come to an end. If it has an end date then you can bet all your progress will stop when the program stops.

The next few videos are going to break down what really matters when trying to lose fat mass and gain lean muscle tone. I’m going to show and tell you all the important measures for you to apply and I am going to debunk the marketing hypes and false information most of you have likely already heard and been told (or perhaps even tried) in the past.

In video #2 of this 8 part mini series, I am going to be talking about the key to lifelong fat loss. I am going to teach you the difference and similarity between diets and methods and how you can choose and apply the ones that will work for you.

Before we do that I want you to write down any diets or detox’s you may have tried in the past.

Once you’ve listed them, have a good hard look.. think and ask yourself if it worked? If the answer was yes.. How long did the results last.

The point of this exercise is to highlight the fact that every single diet works… until it doesnt.

The point I’m trying to make is you are going to be taught how to adopt methods that will not only work for you but rather …. Ones that will work forever!

Stay tuned for the next blog in this 8 part video series where I’ll be breaking down all types of diets, methods and strategies you can use as a type 1 diabetic wanting to achieve the best lifestyle possible with the most impact, freedom and control.

If you’d like instant access to my FREE TRIAL of the Diabetic Athletic Lifestyle Accelerator Program, you can make use of the diabetic friendly training plans, nutrition plans, workouts, calorie calculators and insulin on boards calculators all designed to help you dominate your diabetes… simply click HERE now and enjoy!

Yours in Strength,

Nicholas Caracandas