Counting calories is time-consuming and so much harder than just reading nutrition labels, but if you take a moment to do a little research, you may be surprised to see how you can enjoy some of your favorite foods without guilt. The photos below compare healthy options that are similar in portion size but may or may not differ in calorie count. You'll soon see that you can treat yourself in small portions and still stay within your daily limit or you can go overboard with certain ‘healthy’ foods. Take note of 6 different food comparisons that will kick your calorie counting in the gut.
1. Bowl for Breakfast
Looking at the calorie comparison you may think, "wow... the Cocoa Puffs bowl has fewer calories, so it must be healthier." False! Not all healthier choices will have fewer calories. In the morning, it may be easier to grab Cocoa Puffs instead of making oatmeal, but the fiber-filled oats will provide more nutrients.
2. Afternoon Snack
Both of these afternoon snacks are good for you but provide different types of nutrients for the body. If you’re looking to lose weight, the cucumbers and hummus is an excellent choice, while if you need to gain weight the apples and flaxseed almond butter are what you should grab. Both will help in shifting weight and toning your body.
3. Grab n Go Snack
Same calories and amount of carbohydrates but the rice cakes can be eaten at a higher volume than the pretzels. The rice cakes are bigger and provide iron to produce healthy red blood cells.
4. Dine-In Dinner
At first glance, there's no difference between the two yummy bowls. One bowl has more noodles while the other bowl has more vegetables. Extra noodles can be hard to pass up, but more vegetables are fewer calories and provide more significant health benefits in the long run.
5. Guilty Pleasure
Everyone has heard the myth that sweet potato fries are healthier than white potato fries. But as you can see, sweet potato fries have more calories than white potato fries in the same bowl. When baked each of them has their own nutritional value. Sweet Potatoes have more Vitamin A and fiber but white potatoes are higher in essential minerals, such as iron, magnesium, and potassium.
6. Sweet Tooth
When it gets late, and you’re craving a sweet treat, grab a bowl of fruit instead of reaching for skittles. You can eat way more strawberries for the same calories as a super small portion of hard coated candy.
Tell us what calorie comparison surprised you the most in the comments below!