“Volumetrics”: eating more, even if you’re trying to weigh less

I’ve played this game with myself before – when choosing between two snacks or meals that are similar in terms of caloric intake – I’ll always choose (or try to think of a swap) that allows me to actually eat more volume…my eyes and brain feel like I’m indulging more, even if I’m actually not. My favorite example of this is popcorn because I can have a nice big bowl of it (light or air-popped, of course) for the same calories as an OUNCE of pretzels! (To go onto a tangent, I must share: my personal favorite is Skinny Pop and if you haven’t met this stuff, you need to: 35 calories per CUP and it is fantastically amazing, 3 ingredients, all natural…what more can I say? Lunds now carries it, as well as Whole Foods and Costco. Read another rave review of it here.)

Turns out – there’s actually a principle behind this thought process, and we can (and probably should) use to to eat more to weigh less! (what could possibly be wrong about that!?) I came across an article on the topic of “volumetrics” on Fit Sugar: the principle was actually developed by Barbara Rolls, Ph.D., of Pennsylvania State University, and states that “if you can build your diet around foods that have fewer calories but more volume, you can lose weight without eating less food.”

It certainly isn’t rocket science and totally makes sense, but it might not be something we think about to help ourselves out when trying to lose or maintain our weight. Plus, it’s a fun thing to think about and explore the possibilities of – and making this principle work for you is as simple as paying attention to the calories in food (which we probably should be doing anyways!)!

Fit Sugar gave some fabulous examples of this here (and my popcorn trick made the list):

1. Swap meat for mushrooms or beans 

2. Swap jelly with real fruit: love PB&J’s? this is a fantastic tip – swap real raspberries for your jelly and not only consume less calories but add some fiber and much less processing to your sandwich!

3. Swap pretzels for lightly salted edamame: if you need a salty fix, Fit Sugar tells us “one ounce of edamame has less than half the amount of calories as one ounce of pretzels. Plus, edamame’s fiber and water content will keep you fuller longer.”

4. Swap your typical appetizer with a bowl of broth-based soup: Dr. Rolls has told Self magazine that studies have shown that people who start their dinner with a bowl of broth-based soup consume 100 fewer calories overall. She also recommends going for soups with high-fiber ingredients, such as beans and vegetables.”

5. Swap potato chips for popcorn: This one goes directly to your brain as well, as you are visually able to consume much more popcorn! A serving of popcorn is 3 whole cups vs. one tiny ounce for potato chips (and again, if you try Skinny Pop, those three cups are only 105 calories – and that’s a BIG bowl!)


6. Swap orange juice with an orange: this goes for most fruit juices – Fit Sugar tells us “although juice has a high water content, it is also a concentrated source of calories and has no filling fiber. If you switch your glass of juice out for a whole orange, you will find that you feel a lot fuller on half the calories.”

7 . Swap regular pasta with creamy sauce for whole wheat pasta with vegetables and marinara: You are able to eat a lot more volume here, and also are providing yourself with more nutrients and vitamins.

To see the original article, click here!

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