Calorie is a unit of energy. A food item has ‘X’ amount of calories means that food item will release ‘X’ amount of energy when it is digested by the body after consumption. This energy is used to perform day to day activities.
When you eat food, you are consuming calories. And when you are doing activities like walking, running, even sleeping, you are burning or expending calories. If your consumption is less than the expenditure, you will lose your weight. If your calorie consumption is equal to calorie expenditure, you will maintain your weight, and if your consumption is more, you will gain weight. This is the reason calories play such an important role in fitness lifestyle.
We get calories from macronutrients – Fats, Carbohydrates, and Protein. There is a fourth element as well – Alcohol – which also a source of calories, but isn’t considered as a nutrient as it doesn’t add any nutrition value.
Speaking about the amount calories, you can refer following values to judge the nature of the food items, in terms of high or low calories:
1 gram of Protein = 4 Calories
1 gram of Carbohydrate = 4 Calories
1 gram of Fat = 9 Calories
1 gram of Alcohol = 7 Calories
You would have noticed that Fat has calories twice as much as in Protein and Carbs. That is why fats are considered notorious in making you overweight. Fats, however, aren’t the only culprit.
We have listed down below top 5 food items that are high in calories:
1. Hydrogenated Oils
Hydrogenated Oils rank top in the list. Partially hydrogenated oils contain trans-fat which increases LDL (good cholesterol) and reduces HDL (bad cholesterol). 100gms of hydrogenated oil contain 884 Calories and 1 serving (1 tablespoon) contains 120 Calories.
2. Chips and Fries
Potato Chips and French Fries have undoubtedly become staple snacks these days. They are fried deep in oil and contain the high amount of bad fat (trans fat).100gms of Potato chips contain 530 Calories and 1 serving (30gm packet) contains 160 Calories.
3. Ice creams and Chocolates
Ice creams and Chocolates are known devils! You know they are bad, yet you can’t stop yourself of grabbing them every time they are presented.Ice creams are made by churning high fat milk and they are high in sugar as well. 100gms of vanilla ice cream contains 207 Calories and 1 serving (0.5 cup) contain 145 Calories.Chocolate, however, has cocoa which acts as antioxidants. But apart from this, chocolates, too, have a lot of milk fat and sugar, which pose the serious threat to health if consumed every day. 100gms of dark chocolate contains 598 Calories.
1 chocolate cookie has 70 Calories, and you know how quickly you can munch cookies if you get your hands on them once. Cookies don’t look harmful at the first instance. But when you take a closer look into the ingredients you would know the threat they pose. Cookies are made from refined flour, a high amount of sugar, and oil. Refined flours are high in starch and less in fibre and cause blood sugar level imbalance. This problem stands same for white bread. 1 slice of white bread contains 66 calories. Imagine how much calories would add up in a simple cheese sandwich.
5. Salad dressings
So you are following a diet plan, which is full of veggies for fibre, vitamins and mineral, and boiled chicken for protein. Perhaps some beans and sweet potato for healthy carbs. To make this meal tasty, you add a topping of salad dressing. It looks like a perfect meal, right? No. Salad dressings, too, have bad fats which you couldn’t spot. 1 tablespoon of Salad dressing has 73 Calories. To make the dressings delicious, makers add salt, sugar and saturated fat into the dressing. Going above the serving size would cause cholesterol related issues.
These are our top 5 high calorie foods. It is not necessary to completely exclude these items from your lifestyle; it is impossible. After all, we are human beings, and we have to take care of our taste buds, too. You can have these items occasionally – that’s what cheat days are for! Enjoy these foods in moderation and you can continue living a healthy lifestyle.