So you’ve started on your journey to lose weight. You’ve been following your plan and logging your food. The resources you’ve been given are great because they give you your calorie counts. If you are on the Noom Weight Loss Program, you know what color category your food is in, and just how much food you are consuming in the green, yellow, and red categories. You can read all about that in my article here. That is fantastic, but you will come across some instances where you don’t know the calorie count of something. Calculating food calories can be difficult when there is no food label to tell you.
Where The Problem Lies
Yes, it’s true. Not all foods have labels to give us direction. Think of restaurants you have been in. The family reunion you attended with the potluck meal. The online recipes that have caught your eye, but have no nutritional information attached. The family secret recipes that have been passed down through the generations that never thought of calorie counts when they were even developed.
Yes, these situations can trip us up a bit. It doesn’t have to mean that we can never have that food because there is no label attached to it. You never really know how a food’s “numbers” will play out until you run them. It could be a much healthier dish than you originally thought. The opposite could be true. Putting some legwork into finding the answer gives you a clearer picture.
Food Calorie Calculators
Food calorie calculators are very helpful and fill different purposes. The most common you would think of is when you have a recipe with no nutritional information. You have all the ingredients, the amounts required, the serving size and number of servings in the recipe. What you don’t have is the nutritional label. Inputting the missing elements in a nutritional calculator gives you the calories and all of the nutritional values of the recipe’s ingredients. With some of these calculators, you can download the nutritional label. This makes it very helpful if you don’t already have one for a recipe.
To determine the calories per serving of a specific recipe, you will need to know all of the ingredients, brand names (if applicable), the quantity or amount of each ingredient, the portion size and number of portions in each recipe. You will add these specifics to the calculator, press the calculate button and presto! You have a nutritional value per serving!
There are several online calculators that are free for use. The one at verywellfit.com has a very good article which includes some troubleshooting if need be. This food calorie calculator also includes the nutritional label you can print out. You can find the calculator here. This calculator has many types and brands of food in its database. Sometimes you may not find the exact match to your specific brand, but it should give you results that are very comparable. This type of food nutrition calculator is not perfect because of these slight variations you may encounter, but it’ll be fairly close and work better than no label at all.
If you are heading out to eat at a restaurant, having a good idea of what you will eat is the best idea. Some research ahead of time can take the guesswork and stress out of the occasion. Many restaurants these days have nutritional guides for their entrees online. You can check there ahead of time. You could call the restaurant to inquire about their foods. You might even have the option of choosing the restaurant! Being well prepared ahead of time, makes your experience much more enjoyable and as I mentioned, much less stressful. You can also check out some of these online food calculators, as many of them have restaurant entrees in their database as well. If you can’t find the exact item, making your best-educated guess is sometimes the option you need to take. This goes for those potluck dinners you attend too.
Recipe Swaps and Calculators
One of the other big reasons I like the calculators is having the ability to rethink recipes and still know the nutritional info. Swapping lower fat content foods, reducing sugar content, type of sugar or no sugar will give you different nutritional values overall. This is a great resource for people looking to create healthier dishes and people with diseases like type 2 diabetes. A real game changer when it comes to taking recipes you really enjoy and “lightening” them up for a healthier choice.
Other Online Food Nutrition Calculators
These sites also include some recipe builders and nutritional information for foods you cannot find otherwise.
You may find it useful to use parts of 2 calculators to achieve your best result. You just have to try them out.
As a Wrapup
As a wrapup, online nutritional calculators are a very useful tool. They are not something you need to use everyday, but they have their purpose and they are easy to use. Give it a try! You may find, you have opened yourself up to an entirely new array of foods you never knew about before. Bookmark them and use it. They are worth it to keep yourself aware and accountable.
After years of weight issues, I have finally found the formula of combining healthy food choices, regular exercise and positive behavior change to lose weight for good. Coupled with, exploring self-development, being productive and living simply, I am now maintaining a healthy lifestyle and in a good place. I enjoy writing articles to help my readers to become the best they can be!