Simple Swaps

4 Simple Swaps to Cut Empty Calories

Apr.11, 2013

What is an empty calorie? It’s a calorie that is from added sugar or solid fat and doesn’t provide any nutritional value. Did you know that eating just 100 extra calories per day can add up to 10 extra pounds per year?

Cutting the right type of calories, like those empty calories, can help  keep off those extra pounds –which is easier if you are exercising and eating a balanced diet.

Here are some easy swaps you can make to keep those extra empty calories to a minimum!

1. Swap out mayo and use mustard instead. While mayonnaise has 90 calories per tablespoon, mustard only has 15 calories and is loaded with flavor!

2. Swap out regular soda for a zero or low calorie option.  Cut out those 140 empty calories found in a 12 ounce glass of soda and instead have:

  • water-always the best choice!

  • flavored water-you can always choose water in the dining hall then bring a flavoring with you, such as Dasani Drops ( just a couple drops adds enough flavor).

  • water with fruit-get water from one of the hydration stations or cut up some fruit in the dining hall and add some of that to your cup (and eat the rest!).

Read more about hydrating with water here.

3. Go skinless! The herb baked chicken in the dining hall is one of my favorites, but it has about 320 calories per piece. Why? Because the skin is still on! Instead of eating the entire piece, remove the skin and just eat the meat. You can save approximately 150 calories!

4. If you have dessert, choose a lower calorie option. The best option will always be fruit–which has less than 100 calories per serving, but it’s always ‘sweet’ to have a treat once in awhile.

Pass over that 400 calorie brownie or piece of cake and go for a 130 calorie 1/2 cup serving of Howling Cow soft serve ice cream in a bowl or, for 15 extra calories, have that ice cream in a cone. But skip those sprinkles, which can add an extra 75 calories per tablespoon!


Make a couple simple swaps each day to help eliminate some of those extra calories!



Tags: , , ,
Published by ; posted on Thursday, April 11th, 2013 at 6:32 pm. Read more posts in the Nutrition Blog »