eating more than you think....

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Replies

  • jillmarie125
    jillmarie125 Posts: 418 Member
    Ok- I just want to clear some things up. When I posted this, I was really trying to help someone who thought they were logging correctly and not losing weight. I was not trying to promote becoming obsessive. I really don't thing the 3-4 gram difference in packaged food will make a huge difference because it has been stated it can go either way. (i haven't noticed that yet.) I just really wanted to point out that measuring makes room for more error than weighing. Especially if you are only eating at 300-400 calorie deficit. It can stall weight loss for months, like it has for me. I read a post where a woman refused to weigh her food to see if that helped. It opened my eyes to what I was doing wrong. And just wanted to share.

    Jill

    I wouldn't take that girl seriously. She's coming from a different background. Not sure that there is a realistic chance that the people here who way all their food will end up with an eating disorder. She's just attention seeking. It's a great topic, thanks for posting :-)

    I can read what you're typing, you know? Or at least I would... if you could spell.

    Not once did I say that weighing food will lead to an eating disorder. Not once.

    My background is no different than anyone else's here on MFP. I was obese, I started counting calories to lose weight, I became obsessed (as many here are, just look how many hours a day we spend online arguing about this nonsense), and I came to use food to control my life.

    I simply stated that there is no reason to weigh everything. I realize the OP was focusing more on the bigger picture, suggesting that you weigh meats, vegetables, peanut butter, protein powder, etc. because the measuring cups/spoons aren't as accurate. I have a food scale. I understand that. In fact, just the other night, I made cupcakes and weighed each one before and after icing to get a better idea of how many calories were in each.

    I am replying to the other posts I've read.

    To open a bag of bread, weigh a slice, and readjust the calories from a 28g serving to a 30g serving is ridiculous. To do it on a daily basis? Even more ridiculous and bordering on unhealthy. To the person who asked about cooking spray: what are you doing? Using the whole damn can? It. Doesn't. Matter. To the person who weighed a snicker's bar: you probably got an extra peanut or two in it. It's no big deal. Weighing a container of yogurt to check for a 5 calorie discrepancy with the label is going too far -- it's just like crying over diet coke.

    Don't you dare undermine my opinion because you think I am less than you.

    * I weighed the Snickers and yogurt. Only to prove a point. Believe me, if the Snickers was for me, I wouldn't care. I would just eat the whole thing and be sad when it was gone. I was just using it as an example. I don't believe anyone but me mentioned the snickers, yogurt or bread. I have even stated that I don't think those small adjustments would make a huge difference in my weight loss (or lack there of.) I was just saying.
  • Francl27
    Francl27 Posts: 26,373 Member
    Bah, I weighed my bread this morning, it was 46g for two slices, instead of 60g. That's 25 calories. I'll take it... And thanks for reminding me to weigh my taco shells tonight, lol.
  • Bobbie8786
    Bobbie8786 Posts: 202 Member
    Does anyone have the video link to those studies where people were underestimating the food they ate? All these links are great, but there were some in a previous thread that I cannot find. Thanks!
    This one?
    You tube video on the differences between weighing and measuring food :

    No, it was an "official" study following people's eating throughout the day... Thanks though!
    Was it the two videos referred to in this thread about underreported intake?BBC documentary about metabolism myths using double labelled water?
    http://www.myfitnesspal.com/topics/show/1091852-reality-check-skinny-people-must-have-fast-metabolisms?
    That's what I was thinking of! Thank you!
    :flowerforyou: :flowerforyou:

    For anyone who asks the question "why aren't I losing weight, I log everything and exercise every day" they need to watch those 2 videos. Therein lies the "secret" to why they aren't losing weight. They don't need to "eat more" and they aren't in "starvation mode." They are underestimating what they eat. Thus the brilliance of this OP, you have to weigh everything accurately to know what you are eating and the odds are you are not eating at a deficit. It isn't obsessive to weigh all of your food, it is necessary if your goal is to lose weight.
  • lynn_glenmont
    lynn_glenmont Posts: 9,428 Member
    This is so true! I refuse to weigh yogurt though.. too many dishes. I just have a lower goal to make up for those things. But I try to weigh bread, tortillas, pretty much everything else. It is definitely an eye opener.

    If it's just the dishes that are stopping you, weigh the yogurt in the container before you start eating (or adding it to some other food, or whatever you're doing with it). After you've removed all of the yogurt you're going to use at that time (even if you eat the whole container), weigh the container and whatever yogurt is remaining. Now you know how much yogurt you really ate, and you haven't dirtied any extra dishes. (obviously, this is probably too much trouble if you're taking the yogurt with you for lunch, but if you eat the same yogurt brand and size, you can weigh an empty container and then always subtract that same amount from the filled container weight -- I don't see much, if any variation in the weight of two identically manufactured containers.)
  • lynn_glenmont
    lynn_glenmont Posts: 9,428 Member
    Bah, I weighed my bread this morning, it was 46g for two slices, instead of 60g. That's 25 calories. I'll take it... And thanks for reminding me to weigh my taco shells tonight, lol.

    Yes, I find this a lot with bread, and just about always in my favor (i.e., the bread slice weighs less than the label says), which is nice.
  • lynn_glenmont
    lynn_glenmont Posts: 9,428 Member
    Bumping for knowledge. And to remind me to weight my eggs in the morning because now I'm curious!:huh:

    I think I'm going to take the eggs on faith, at least when I'm eating commercially packaged eggs. The process is mechanized so that only eggs in a fairly narrow weight range end up in a carton of a particular size (small, medium, large, extra large, jumbo) and I figure over time the small variations between the eggs in any size category are going to even out. Maybe next time I buy direct-from-the-farm eggs, I'll weigh some to see if they weigh the right amount.
  • Xtinesky
    Xtinesky Posts: 127 Member
    For those who say as well that skinny people do things differently and don't have to measure things, well it's more important for people who have lost weight to measure their food:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/01/magazine/tara-parker-pope-fat-trap.html?pagewanted=all&_r=2&

    There are studies showing that for people who have lost weight, they need to eat few calories and exercise far more than the person who is the same weight who has been at that weight naturally. This has been an eye opener for me, knowing that even after I have lost the weight, I will need to keep on weighing food and counting calories as it's the surefire way to maintain at that level.
  • lynn_glenmont
    lynn_glenmont Posts: 9,428 Member
    Here's my question about this: I use spray for cooking. It has zero calories for 1/3 of a second of a spray. But, I assume after that, it has 1 calorie, and then 2 and on and on. However, zero times 1,000,000,000 is zero, so how do you calculate stuff like that? It says zero calories, but there is no easy way to actually measure.

    Good point. If the real world worked like package labels, you could eat an entire pie and not consume any calories, so long as you only ate a fraction of a gram at a time.

    Also, how do you measure a third of a second? Are we supposed to have a digital stop-watch in hand that shows hundredths of a second? And how many of us have the reaction speed to stop spraying after a third of a second?
  • mrsmarit
    mrsmarit Posts: 229 Member

    I am replying to the other posts I've read.

    To open a bag of bread, weigh a slice, and readjust the calories from a 28g serving to a 30g serving is ridiculous. To do it on a daily basis? Even more ridiculous and bordering on unhealthy. To the person who asked about cooking spray: what are you doing? Using the whole damn can? It. Doesn't. Matter. To the person who weighed a snicker's bar: you probably got an extra peanut or two in it. It's no big deal. Weighing a container of yogurt to check for a 5 calorie discrepancy with the label is going too far -- it's just like crying over diet coke.

    Don't you dare undermine my opinion because you think I am less than you.

    And the thing is that if that's what some people choose to do how dare you undermine their opinion about what works for them.

    Most of us aren't taking about a gram or 2, we're talking a difference of anywhere from 25g to 75 grams which can make a big impact on your daily intake.

    I understand that you had a bad relationship with food at some point but stop pushing your issues on other people.
  • gigglesinthesun
    gigglesinthesun Posts: 860 Member
    I can read what you're typing, you know? Or at least I would... if you could spell.

    Not once did I say that weighing food will lead to an eating disorder. Not once.

    My background is no different than anyone else's here on MFP. I was obese, I started counting calories to lose weight, I became obsessed (as many here are, just look how many hours a day we spend online arguing about this nonsense), and I came to use food to control my life.

    I simply stated that there is no reason to weigh everything. I realize the OP was focusing more on the bigger picture, suggesting that you weigh meats, vegetables, peanut butter, protein powder, etc. because the measuring cups/spoons aren't as accurate. I have a food scale. I understand that. In fact, just the other night, I made cupcakes and weighed each one before and after icing to get a better idea of how many calories were in each.

    I am replying to the other posts I've read.

    To open a bag of bread, weigh a slice, and readjust the calories from a 28g serving to a 30g serving is ridiculous. To do it on a daily basis? Even more ridiculous and bordering on unhealthy. To the person who asked about cooking spray: what are you doing? Using the whole damn can? It. Doesn't. Matter. To the person who weighed a snicker's bar: you probably got an extra peanut or two in it. It's no big deal. Weighing a container of yogurt to check for a 5 calorie discrepancy with the label is going too far -- it's just like crying over diet coke.

    Don't you dare undermine my opinion because you think I am less than you.

    if one spelling mistake makes it hard for you to read something, you have lived a protected life.

    You posted here saying that you are struggling with Bulimia and went on a war path ridiculing other posters about what and how they weigh their food. Not sure where you got all that other stuff from, but I wish you all the best in your journey.
  • sybrix
    sybrix Posts: 134 Member
    Here's my question about this: I use spray for cooking. It has zero calories for 1/3 of a second of a spray. But, I assume after that, it has 1 calorie, and then 2 and on and on. However, zero times 1,000,000,000 is zero, so how do you calculate stuff like that? It says zero calories, but there is no easy way to actually measure.

    You're talking about such miniscule amounts, that worrying about such calories is really pointless. You'll never have complete precision in your measuring, you should strive for the most precision attainable, but fractions of a calorie is going off the deep end.

    I stopped using bottles of canola oil to cook because I pour it rather heavy-handed, and easily can dump 120 cal into that pan which is 1 tbsp. I switched to "zero" calorie canola spray but I know calories don't magically disappear, especially in oil for goodness sake!

    The serving size for cooking spray is a little bogus - i can't coat my medium sized pan in a 1/3 second spray. There are calories in it, and it adds up. If you cook 3 meals a day with a 3 second spray each you can have an extra 63 calories that you don't know about. A general rule of thumb is 7 calories in a one second spray, and there are entries in the database that reflect this that I use to log my cooking spray. Yes, it's not the end of the world, but if you are guesstimating other things then watch out.

    You could not log your cooking spray and have eggs for breakfast, a grilled cheese for lunch, and stir fry for dinner. There goes your extra 63 calories in cooking spray. Let's say someone also brought in donuts at work and you had to guesstimate that and underestimate by 150 calories, which is completely possible.

    If you're like me with a 250 deficit, you nearly demolished a day of work from dismissing "things that don't make a difference". It ALL adds up in the end.

    Here's a nice little article about what I'm talking about: http://www.eatouteatwell.com/if-cooking-spray-is-made-with-oil-how-can-it-be-calorie-free/

    Having said that, I still think it's fine to be off an occasional day. As long as every day isn't like that, of course.
  • Cranquistador
    Cranquistador Posts: 39,745 Member
    This is the definition of obsessive. Some packages overestimate calories, and some even underestimate calories. Calm down, eat at your calorie goal, and let the rest even out.

    This reminds me of the time I cried for 2 hours when I found out diet coke as 1 calorie per 8 ounces.

    The point is that if you can't measure accurately you can't just "eat at your calorie goal." Especially when people only have a small amount of weight to lose, there is a very small margin of error. Weighing food is another tool for people to learn to accurately log and achieve their goals. No one is crying here. They are learning.

    I'm not talking about the issue of weighing foods vs. measuring with cups/tablespoons. I understand that those measurements are often wrong and can mean trouble when it comes to consuming on a regular basis as a part of a strict calorie goal. I am all for weighing meats or homemade meals. But someone here mentioned that they weigh mustard. You don't think that's gone a little too far?

    Pfft I weigh mustard. It's 15 calories a serving. If you never weigh your condiments, you can go over by quite a bit at the end of the day.

    And if you think it's obsessive... *shrug*. It's worked for me. My health matters more than whether people think I'm obsessive or not.

    A serving of mustard is 1 tsp. I'm sorry, but there are not 15 calories in a teaspoon of mustard. I don't know where you got that from. It's usually around 3-4 calories per teaspoon depending on the type, and those calories will not matter in the long run.

    For me there's got to be balance. I don't weigh spinach or pre-packaged foods. I don't take my food scale to restaurants. But I do weigh my mayo and other condiments.

    To me it's about realizing that there's some margin of error in the process, but still trying to minimize that margin as much as possible.

    And I don't think everyone needs to weigh everything. Some people don't like the place it takes them mentally and that's fine. But if you have a small deficit and you're not losing, it's the first thing I'd suggest.

    I think you have a healthy point of view on weighing food. I'm mainly concerned about the people here who are taking things to an extreme.
    i think you are taking your critique of people on this thread to an extreme.
  • DeeDeeMee
    DeeDeeMee Posts: 133 Member
    You make a great point, and it's one I've noticed a bit lately. When I started (85 days ago according to MFP) I lost a kilo (2.2 pounds) a week for 9 weeks, then plateaued. I wanted to reach that 10 kilo mark so bad, but I'd been guesstimating my quantities, esp at dinner. 1/2 cup of rice or pasta can quickly turn into 3/4 oreven a whole cup if you're not paying enough attention! So I started to measure everything again an lost an extra kilo within a week! VERY happy!

    I know that it gets harder to lose the closer you get to your goal, so I'll keep the weighing of everything in mind. It's still about 15 kilos (33 pounds) away for me. I have some good kitchen scales, will have to leave them out on the bench. :)
  • Jewlz280
    Jewlz280 Posts: 547 Member
    I try to keep it balanced. I weigh things that are calorie dense like proteins, cheese, pb. But I'm not anal about things like fruit and veggies. I DO plop them on there once in a while to check (like bananas, HOLEY CRAP). I do weigh berries but usually because I eat big servings of those. I don't usually check packages because I typically assume they are off. And in the end, if I'm eating over (I'm currently at 1650), then I figure it's time to cut back my overall calorie count to account for it simply because once I get to maintenance, I know I am not going to want to weigh every little thing all the time. With that said, I completely agree on the need for scale use for a couple of reasons 1) For the purpose of the wake-up call that yes, you ARE overeating and 2) To actually learn the sizes of servings! When I first joined MFP, I wasn't sure on the whole eat more thing, but now I realize what they meant by it like another poster explained (basically, you don't have to eat super restrictive to lose -- just a deficit and it will happen!). It really does, for most people, break down to calories in and out. And what better way to learn than to weigh? And then even in maintenance even if you don't want to do it with every single thing, you will have done it for long enough to know which foods you really should and which ones you can eat one more leaf of. LOL
  • Francl27
    Francl27 Posts: 26,373 Member
    I still have no idea how to log a banana. All the entries go by size, and the associated weight is more often than not ways of what my 'medium' banana actually weighs (like it will say medium 8 inch banana (120g) and mine will be 150g or something. And do you count the skin or not when you weigh it?

    Good thing I almost never eat bananas...
  • LyndaMRou
    LyndaMRou Posts: 54 Member

    See here is my problem. I have lost weight, I have about 15 pounds left to reach goal. I know how to lose weight. Well the scale has been going up and down 5 pounds over the last few months. I really thought something was wrong with me. But I am not a special snowflake, even though I would love to be. So I knew I had to really look in to my diet.

    I'm in the same boat right now, with my 75 lb loss. I like to think that it's just because the fat is really entrenched (been there for over 14 years) and won't let go without a struggle, but I know it's also that I'm not always on point with my calories (I'm trying to live lifestyle change, not "diet" and so life happens). It is frustrating. But I do weigh and measure as much as I can, and try to be aware that my "eyeballing it" doesn't always translate to fact, especially when eating away from home.
    Well my friend and I decided to weigh and measure my foods. My 1Tbsp of peanut butter which should have been 16 grams was actually 23 grams. Yogurt - the package says 150g ...it was 159g. Arnolds sandwich thin- package says it is 43g....one weighed in at 50g and another one 51g. This one made me feel really dumb. Apples- I usually log as a medium apple, because well there are bigger at the store and smaller ones. (yeah I know...dumb!) Well a medium one is 140g my "medium" apple was 210.

    I like to call this portion creep. You properly measure so often you think "I got this down!" and stop measuring so rigorously and then over time the size of the portion creeeeeps up.... That's why I keep the scale handy.

    Thanks for the great post!
  • smc864
    smc864 Posts: 570 Member
    I know since I started measuring my coffee creamer in the morning that it lasts longer. So I know what I thought was 3 tbps was probably 5 or 6. It was really yummy, but I stayed the same weight for a long time.

    About a week after joining MFP I decided to buy a food scale... seriously the best decision EVER. Prior to measuring and then weighing my coffee creamer I was using about 3 servings/cup of coffee and I would have 2 cups. That is 210 calories/day just on coffee creamer!! Now, I limit myself to one cup with one serving of creamer and I savor every sip. It's just not worth the calories to have any more than that and I refuse to get the sugar free/fat free crap.

    Peanut butter was another shocker for me. I used to go through a jar every week. The big jar!! Now they last about a month and I eat pb everyday. Now I usually go for half a serving on half of a sandwich thin. It satisfies my craving and doesn't eat up too many of my calories for the day.

    I weigh everything that goes into my mouth. EVERYTHING. I even weigh mustard... because of the sodium content. I stay under 2500 mg/day and this helps to prevent weight fluctuations. If people think this is obsessive, I couldn't care less. It works for me. For the first time I am losing weight consistently and at a good pace (1.5-2 lbs/week).

    Thanks again to the OP for posing... I hope all the special snowflakes out there have some self reflection after reading.
  • smc864
    smc864 Posts: 570 Member
    I still have no idea how to log a banana. All the entries go by size, and the associated weight is more often than not ways of what my 'medium' banana actually weighs (like it will say medium 8 inch banana (120g) and mine will be 150g or something. And do you count the skin or not when you weigh it?

    Good thing I almost never eat bananas...

    The weight of the banana that you want to log is without the skin.
  • Smuterella
    Smuterella Posts: 1,623 Member
    You know - this might be my problem. I weigh my meats (chicken breasts , steaks) and veggies etc but not pre portioned things like bread, apples, eggs, bacon rashers.

    Maybe I need a second food scale for work?
  • joolywooly33
    joolywooly33 Posts: 421 Member
    Wow - great post...so much of what we do in terms of cals in and exercise is at best a gestimation!