Avoid These Common Mistakes When Watching Calories in Food

Do you think your ice cream has just 150 calories? Or your hummus just 70? Or how about that beef eye of round with just 180 calories? You should only wish that were true!


The serving sizes on the Nutrition Facts labels — which are largely set by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) — are unrealistically small for many foods. And that can make the calories (and other nutrients) look unrealistically good. For example:

Ice cream. The 1/2 cup (4 oz.) serving is equal to two golf balls. Have you seen those single-serving cups sold by Edy’s or Dreyer’s? They’re 3/4 cup (6 oz.), which is 1 1/2 servings, or 1 1/2 times the calories.

Hummus. Only 50 to 70 calories in 2 Tbs…a golf ball’s worth.

Cereal. For denser cereals (like granola, Grape-Nuts, and muesli), the serving size is just 1/2 cup (half a baseball). Double it and you ‘re up to about 400 calories.


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