Calorie density

How to eat MORE food and FEWER Calories AT THE SAME TIME

When trying to shed some body fat, eating more isn't typically the advice you'll receive, but if done correctly, you can eat more food and fewer Calories at the same time. This is actually useful even if you're just trying to maintain your weight. Before we get into the eating more food part, I need to define a term for you that will be important for understanding the rest of the article. 

Calorie density is the number of Calories a specific food contains in comparison to how much the food weighs. If Food Item A contains 150 Calories and weighs 100 grams and Food Item B contains 200 Calories and also weighs 100 grams, Food Item B would be more Calorie dense. 

Let's look at an extreme example so you can see what I mean. 36 grams of lettuce contains 5 Calories. 36 grams of olive oil contains 317 Calories. Therefore, olive oil is much more Calorie dense than lettuce.

The problem is, the typical American diet contains way too many Calorie dense foods. Let's take a look at a common inclusion in most peoples' diets and the king of all fast food items, the Big Mac. The Big Mac weighs 219g and contains 563 Calories. By contrast, 85 grams of grilled chicken breast and 148g of broccoli (the standard serving size for both) contains a total of 190 Calories. For roughly the same amount of food, you're actually eating 373 fewer Calories!

I know what some of you are thinking. Grilled chicken and broccoli aren't on the same level of flavor or convenience as a Big Mac, so let's look at a more equal comparison. A Spicy Southwest Grilled Chicken Salad weighs 262g and contains 350 Calories. In this instance, you're actually eating more food while saving 213 Calories. By replacing Calorie dense foods with less Calorie dense foods, you can eat more food while also eating fewer Calories.

Let's look at some easy examples of swaps that can be made to save Calories. Just for fun, I made two separate comparisons. The first comparison is how many Calories can be saved if you eat the same amount of each food item (listed as Calories per 100 grams of that food).

Calories per 100g Calories per 100g
Jasmine Rice 180 Diced Red Potatoes
Vanilla Ice Cream 197 Fat-Free Greek Yogurt 53
Spaghetti Noodles 357 Zucchini Noodles 17
Potato Chips 571 Snap Pea Crisps 392
Fried Chicken 246 Grilled Chicken 165
Raisins 299 Grapes 67
Tuna in Oil 160 Tuna in Water 107

The second comparison is how much of each food item you can eat for the same number of Calories (listed as grams needed to obtain 100 Calories from that food).

Grams per 100 Calories Grams per 100 Calories
Jasmine Rice 56 Diced Red Potatoes
Vanilla Ice Cream 51 Fat-Free Greek Yogurt 188
Spaghetti Noodles 28 Zucchini Noodles 588
Potato Chips 18 Snap Pea Crisps 26
Fried Chicken 40 Grilled Chicken 60
Raisins 33 Grapes 149
Tuna in Oil 63 Tuna in Water 93

Having this knowledge opens up three possibilities for you. You can:

  1. Eat significantly fewer Calories without eating less food.
  2. Eat a bit fewer Calories while eating a bit more food.
  3. Eat the same amount of Calories while eating significantly more food.

Where will you go with this knowledge? Let me know in the comments!

Thank you so much for reading! If you found this information helpful, share it with a friend. I would appreciate it and I know they will too. If you like what I have to say, sign up below to become a Treadaway Training insider and never miss a post or video. I will be back Tuesday with another fat loss topic on my YouTube channel. As always, God bless you AND your family and I'll see you next week.