Counting Calories

Angie Szumlinski News

The word “calories” has 8 letters, twice as many letters as a 4 letter word. Now that I have you counting the letters (I know you are) let’s talk about counting calories instead! The average American adult has tried more than one weight-reduction plan in their lifetime, most of us have tried many different plans, some successful, some not so much! Many plans fail due to counting calories. Let’s face it if you are going to eat a banana split who is counting the calories?

That said, many restaurant chains across the country are identifying calorie counts on each item on their menu. For the most part, this is a mandated, state-specific requirement for restaurants. I don’t know about you, but honestly, I do look at the calorie counts of the menu items I am considering. In fact, I was surprised at the calorie counts on some of my favorite foods, some were lower than I expected but most were higher.

An interesting study was published in JAMA asking “is calorie labeling on menus associated with reductions in the calorie content of menu items at large chain restaurants”? Hmmm, the study suggests that mandated calorie labeling may have encouraged large restaurant chains to introduce lower-calorie items! Think about it, if everything on the menu is outside of your planned calorie intake, would you continue to visit that restaurant? Of course not, unless your goal is to sabotage your healthy lifestyle goals! There is no bad news in this study, first, large chain restaurants are trying to accommodate our healthier lifestyles, and second, if we still want to be “bad” we can! Hooray! Stay well, stay informed, and stay tuned!