Difficult-to-count foods

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Do you ever have a hard time with counting certain foods? Like eating out, eating at a party, not knowing the calorie amounts or ingredients, or measuring out cooked vs. uncooked foods (I'm looking at you, quinoa). Today was just extra rough and counting just feels a little more stressful to the point where I want to saw screw today and start back up tomorrow. What do you do in these situations? How do you get through when the difficult-to-count food starts to make your brain fall apart LOL! SOS. :s

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  • harper16
    harper16 Posts: 2,564 Member
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    With eating out and foods that you can't get accurate counts. Find a close meal and go with a higher calorie count. With foods like rice or quinoa you weigh the foods and go with the calories for the uncooked weight.
  • amusedmonkey
    amusedmonkey Posts: 10,330 Member
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    A best guess has a much lower chance of hurting your diet than a "screw it" moment. You need to get used to the fact that there will be times when you can't count accurately, this won't be the last time. If every time this happens you just go off the rails you'll make things harder for yourself. Find something similar and log it, however inaccurate. I usually go for higher calorie entries just to be safe.
  • ArtsieSarah
    ArtsieSarah Posts: 129 Member
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    I love all the great advice, thanks so much you guys!
  • ritzvin
    ritzvin Posts: 2,860 Member
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    I would estimate as best I can. It's something I try not to do too often, and will watch the frequency more closely if my weight trends upward.

    For the most part, the food in these situations are typically pretty calorie dense... So unless I have loads & loads of exercise calories, it's not something I can really do too often anyway and lose/stay in weight (would mean either going over calories regularly or eating thimble-sized portions and going hungry later).
  • MaltedTea
    MaltedTea Posts: 6,286 Member
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    After being here ~3 months, I used the "quick add" option for my Easter meal which was obviously high calorie.

    I'd been cooking all day and wasn't about to track everything that went into the dinner. No time. No interest. I was already tired and stressed. So I put dinner as 2,500 calories (which speaks to the idea of erring on the high side which @AnnPT77 mentioned)

    That day.

    But I went back to logging everything properly the next day. The lesson, for me, is to plan better the next blue moon when I'm silly enough to attempt making a large, buffet style meal for my family.

    So, if you have a plan to do better - or otherwise mitigate - in YOUR future scenarios, that may help you log better over the long-run as well @ArtsieSarah
  • ritzvin
    ritzvin Posts: 2,860 Member
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    Ditto on just doing a large random-ish quick add for rarer events like holiday feast meals.
  • corinasue1143
    corinasue1143 Posts: 7,467 Member
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    I emphatically endorse all above answers.
  • Lietchi
    Lietchi Posts: 6,311 Member
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    I log everything, even if I barely know what I've eaten :smiley: Even a Christmas dinner with 4 or 5 different hors d'oeuvres, a starter, main course and two desserts, none of which I knew the precise ingredients for. Very approximately of course, and often erring on the side of overestimation (both for quantity and caloric values).

    Those are exceptional situations, I'm more annoyed by more regular foods that don't have caloric values. We've recently started ordering through a local farmers' market (since supermarkets are understocked at the moment), but none of the products have any caloric values indicated: yoghurts, cheeses, prepared puddings/desserts, meats and meat preparations. These foods make up too much of our daily diet and can vary too much in caloric values for me to allow into my diet, I've already dialed down what we order for our meals (except vegetables, where nutritional values are more easily found in databases), focusing on foods only my BF (who doesn't count calories) will eat.
  • AnnPT77
    AnnPT77 Posts: 32,816 Member
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    Side comment: In circumstances where it's not a social faux pas (like maybe big-group potlucks where people are milling around ignoring each other, or some restaurants), or when it can be turned into a hostess compliment and still be polite (some smaller parties), I sometimes will take a quick cell-phone photo (no flash! :grimace: ) of my plate, and include something of known size (fork works well).

    I can then use that when I get back home to log a little more accurately. It helps with portion size estimating, but also with "deconstructing" ingredients in certain things to get a little more accurate estimate, if that's important to me.
  • LukesGreenMilk
    LukesGreenMilk Posts: 56 Member
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    I usually just look up a restaurant that serves a similar dish and put it in there.
  • ritzvin
    ritzvin Posts: 2,860 Member
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    Lietchi wrote: »
    I'm more annoyed by more regular foods that don't have caloric values. We've recently started ordering through a local farmers' market (since supermarkets are understocked at the moment), but none of the products have any caloric values indicated: yoghurts, cheeses, prepared puddings/desserts, meats and meat preparations. These foods make up too much of our daily diet and can vary too much in caloric values for me to allow into my diet, I've already dialed down what we order for our meals (except vegetables, where nutritional values are more easily found in databases), focusing on foods only my BF (who doesn't count calories) will eat.

    This very much annoys me at the regular supermarket, where one expects the F*ing nutritional info label. I bought a (very) large boneless center cut pork loin roast at Wegmans this week... had to try to move out of the way in a corner (social distancing in effect and trying not to block people from the pork section) to look it up on here (fat:protein ratio can be massively varied with pork) before deciding whether to buy it (7 lb of pork so didn't want it to be a calorie bomb for several weeks of meals). I would expect a small market farmer to not have that info, but strange that its not on packaged meat at a major grocery store chain. Same there with the pork cut into chops. Also annoying that the chicken breasts there have the info per cooked (roasted) weight.