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The Fitness Chef is a myth-busting nutrition coach and personal trainer who is passionate about not succumbing to fad diets or cutting out all the foods you enjoy. Understanding nutritional comparisons and making subtle food changes can be a really effective way of reducing calories in your meals, without making too much effort. Read on for his advice on how to make small progressive changes to your diet for long-term sustainable gains. The Fitness Chef explains how with his calorie comparison pictures – making understanding calories and nutritional comparisons easy


Same food, different calories

Measuring food isn’t essential if you don’t have a weight-based goal. But if you do, it may be a good idea to realise that some foods vary in size, and therefore in calories. For example, two people could consume a sweet potato, but one may consume 170 calories if they eat a small sweet potato, and the other 385 calories via a larger one. It’s making the subtle changes of looking at the size or weight of food that can really make an impact for cutting and understanding calories.

Idolised, demonised

We tend to idolise foods because we believe them to be ‘better’ for us, and we often want affirmation that our choices are correct. By the same token, we demonise other foods because we believe them to be ‘worse’ for us - we want affirmation that eating these foods is incorrect. But logically, no food is right or wrong, it’s just different – and comparing calories in different foods proves this. In this example, the avocado contains more micronutrients and fibre, but is calorie dense. So, if you are comparing them for a calorie deficient diet, the Nutella toast doesn’t have the same nutritional benefits of the avocado, but it is lower in calories. Meaning in this example, it would be the more beneficial choice for fat loss. Understand that you can eat any food you want as long as you appreciate it’s place in the context of an overall supportive diet.

Dried Fruit Vs Fresh

A great example for calorie comparison is looking at dried fruit vs. fresh fruit. The reason dried fruit is higher in calories than fresh fruit is because it’s lost a large amount of water. Fresh fruit usually contains 70% of its weight from water, whereas dried fruit can lose up to 95% of its water. This means, per weight, dried fruit is a much more concentrated calorie source, meaning you are eating a lot more fruit in total. Understanding calories in this way can help you make small tweaks to your diet and help your health goals in a sustainable way. 

*Before you start comparing calories, we recommend that you seek medical advice before beginning any weight loss or nutritional programme. The information provided by The Fitness Chef is not medical advice or a substitute for medical treatment. You should not use The Fitness Chef if you are underweight, pregnant, breastfeeding, under 18 or have any medical condition that affects your dietary requirements. Graeme Tomlinson or The Fitness Chef is not responsible for any medical conditions that arise when using this service.

Find out more by visiting The Fitness Chef's website or Instagram. 

Diving into the world of calorie comparisons to kick off your new balanced lifestyle? Find out more by visiting The Fitness Chef’s website or Instagram. Or sign up to our E-newsletter to keep up with our latest partnership.

To complete your journey towards understanding calories, find a range of tasty, nutritional products at your local SPAR – the convenience store that’s there for you. Discover fresh produce, delicious snacks and so much more.