When considering losing weight and caring for your overall health, it’s easy to join the group of people who carefully count calories and limit your food to avoid exceeding your daily requirements. But this is certainly not as simple as that.
Reducing your calorie intake doesn’t always mean cutting down portion size; it implies awareness of the amount of calories in the food and understanding if this food is healthy for you. For example, you could be eating a type of peanut butter with 100 calories per scoop, and you decide to cut down your scoops, but there could be an even healthier brand of peanut butter, and the same portion of this brand would have five fewer grams of fat.
The food examples presented and explained below will change your perception of food calories.
Almonds vs. Fruit Pastels – The first natural reaction to this photo would be to automatically think that almonds would be the primary choice for most. Both foods contain precisely the same amount of calories, but almonds contain loads of nutrients to keep you fuller for an extended period. However, if you are on a diet with numerous healthy foods, you might choose fruit pastels. Why? You may like to choose foods that will make you happy, as happiness is essential to staying healthy.
Milk Chocolate vs. Dark Chocolate – This photo contains 100 grams of both types of chocolate, but as presented, the calories for each are different. Most people are unaware of the fact that dark chocolate actually contains more calories than milk chocolate. The calorie intake is higher than milk chocolate, but on the bright and healthy side, dark chocolate has less sugar, more fiber, and more iron.
Crisps vs. Crisps – Both bowls contain 40g of crisps; the one on the left includes salt and vinegar, and the one on the right is mixed root vegetables. Although the calorie difference is slight, you probably assumed that the root vegetable bowl would contain fewer calories. This example is used to emphasize that there will often be no significant difference between the product deemed as the “healthy alternative” and the real thing.
Water vs. Water – We are all aware that water can often taste quite bland unless you’re incredibly thirsty; then, it has the most desirable taste on Earth. But for water drinkers who like their flavored water, it might be surprising to know that their favorite flavored water contains calories.
What Twix Considers One Serving vs. Real Life Serving – For someone who is quite mindful of calorie intake, this is a perfect example to show how important it is to read the labels and not the writing in large font. Once you put your hands on the bar, the chances are you would be consuming the whole thing, but it is still beneficial to know what that compares to.
White Americano vs. Flat White – Going there and deciding on your cup of coffee for the day can be pretty perplexing. What happened to the old days when people just drank their coffee black? Well, for those who love Starbucks coffee but want to lose weight, it would be best to replace the Flat White Latte with a White Americano and save 250 calories.
Solero Ice Cream vs. Magnum Ice Cream – If your goal is rapid weight loss, the best healthy choice would be Solero. But, if you follow a high-calorie diet regime and want to cut down calories, Magnum would still be a wholesome choice. It all depends on how many calories you need to cut.
A Healthy Breakfast vs. A Guilty Treat – Both options have an almost equal number of calories, with the digestive biscuits being rich in protein and lower in sugar compared to the Belvitas, which could contain a bit more micronutrients.
Fatloss Food vs. Fattening Food – No single food can cause weight gain. Consuming more calories than what we are burning on a regular basis will cause weight gain. The same is also true for weight loss. No single food will provoke losing weight, but consuming fewer calories than what we are burning will contribute to weight loss.
100g of Milk Chocolate vs. 100g of Gluten-free, Wheat-free and Milk-free Chocolate – It is a widely accepted idea for “Free From” products to be identified with weight loss, but as we can see, this is not true. Just because a product is gluten-free doesn’t necessarily imply fewer calories. Always be careful and read the label when trying to achieve your fitness goal.
Toast and Butter vs. Toast and Butter – The naked eye finds these two choices identical, and they are, except for one tiny detail, calories. The toast on the right contains 96 more calories from the additional amount of butter spread across. Often it is not what we eat but how much we eat.
Same Size with Avocado, Cheese, Croutons, and Dressing – Including salads in your diet is a beautiful way to pack in the micronutrients, but as we can see, not all salads are as healthy as they appear. Always be mindful of the individual components of a meal you plan to eat and how they will behave in terms of the digestion process during your day. Some ingredients may digest slowly, which will affect and slow down your weight loss goals.
All 3 are Smoothies – Preparing a delicious smoothie is perfectly fine for those who are short on time in the morning to eat breakfast or enjoy a nice snack. But with a weight loss goal in mind, we must be careful of what we put in our smoothies, as those carefully selected ingredients will make a significant difference.
Strawberries vs. Strawberries – Both contain the same amount of grams, but dry fruit could be a more convenient option. However, if weight loss is the ultimate goal, fresh strawberries would be the perfect choice
Tracking Calories vs. Not Tracking Calories – If you guessed that both contain the exact same number of calories, then you are correct. This example proves that you don’t always need to count calories when eating your food. If you’re careful and plan for the necessities of your diet, then you will significantly reduce the calorie intake stress and enjoy your meal freely.
Choose the Right Beef – Both bowls contain the same amount of food, with the food on the left cooked with light cooking oil and beef with only 5% fat, and the food on the right cooked with olive oil and beef with 12% fat. Always pay attention to the micronutrients in the ingredients of the food being cooked as sometimes they lack what you need, which in turn can raise your calorie intake.