100 Calories of What?

We’ve all seen those 100 calorie packs of snack foods in the grocery store and thought to ourselves, “Well, maybe I CAN have Oreos on my diet plan.” Invariably, we buy a box, open them up and one of two things happens: we eat one pack and feel like it wasn’t worth the tease–that such a small amount of something so tasty does more harm than good to our delicate dietary psyches–or we eat three packs, effectively destroying any chance of benefiting from the portion control these items try to impose.

The problem with 100 calorie packs is that they’re always processed junk. 100 calorie packs of processed foods are tiny and unsatisfying, not just because food manufacturers are trying to give dieters responsible treats, but because it doesn’t take much processed food to add up to 100 calories. On the other hand, 100 calories worth of whole foods like fruits and veggies would be ENORMOUS!

slicing apple 3.0
Slicing Apple 3.0 / Daniel Novta / CC BY 2.0

So you have to ask yourself, “Why am I starving while losing weight?”

I came across a fascinating photo gallery depicting 200 calories worth of different foods, ranging from apples to chips, and the examples really drive home just how much food a person can put in his or her stomach while still watching the calories.

The photos primarily tell a story of volume–how much space 200 calories can occupy on a plate (and in our stomachs)–but the obvious upside to getting your calories from whole foods is that each calorie is piggybacked by so much more nutrition. It’s a stunning visual that portrays exactly what we here at Guiding Stars are constantly trying to help you understand:

Dieting and nutrition isn’t based solely whether your food is low-fat or low-calorie, low in cholesterol, or low in sodium. The best nutrition comes from foods that pack the most nutrition per calorie you eat, and when you’re watching your weight and limiting those calories, it’s all the more important to make the right choices.

Use our Food Finder to find out which foods will keep you on your weight loss path while supporting your body with the best nutrition you can get. You can search your favorite whole foods as well as tens of thousands of name brand and store brand grocery items and keep yourself on track.