Some Thoughts On Calorie Counts On Menus


Bigger and chain restaurants now have to list calorie counts on their menus.

Have you had experience of the new menu styles yet? What do you think to the idea?

For me, there are some positives and some negatives.

I think for those of us who aren’t Bridget Jones and don’t know calorie counts better than the alphabet, it might be quite eye opening to see the calories for some of our favourite meals out. Wagamama is a great example of this – how is it even possible for a plate of noodles to near 1000 calories a portion!

I also think that seeing calorie┬ácounts on menus may feed our natural reaction that the fewer calories we can eat, the more weight we’re going to lose – which is just not true.

If you rarely eat off plan (once a week or less) then there is probably no value in choosing something other than what you fancy just because the calorie count is lower.

If you eat off plan more often (more than twice a week), then there probably IS value in knowing what the calorie content is, because it allows you to make an informed decision which can help your longer term goals.

Remember though, that calories do not tell the whole story. While a steak option might be higher calorie than the pasta dish, the steak is still likely to be the better choice – what the calories are made of (carbs, protein and fat) is important too.

This reminds me of something I listened to a couple of weeks ago which was putting forward the case that different foods with the same calorie content have different effects inside the body and therefore result in different impacts on one’s figure. Interesting stuff.

For me, the bottom line is this:

Don’t give a second thought to a high calorie meal if you are in good health and consistently getting your diet and lifestyle right.

I’d love to know what your experience has been so far with the calorie information on menus – what do you think about it?

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