How to Cut Calorie Density (Plus Three Recipes)

Eating foods with fewer calories per bite can help people eat less and stay trim. But what’s the best way to cut calorie density?

One day a week for four weeks, scientists provided all the food (breakfast, lunch, dinner, and evening snack) eaten by 59 adults aged 20 to 45. On those days, the researchers lowered the calorie density of the entrées by 20 percent in one of three ways: adding less fat (butter or oil), increasing fruits and vegetables, or adding water. (For example, the researchers added water to a Tex-Mex pasta casserole and a chicken rice casserole by turning them into soups.)

How to Purée Vegetables and Reduce Calories

Call it sneaky. Call it smart. Once you know how to purée vegetables, you can secretly swap those puréed vegetables for other ingredients in some dishes, people will eat fewer calories and won’t notice the difference. This is also a great trick for eating fewer calories for people interested in losing weight. You can also use puréed vegetables as a way to change things up with your regular recipes.

If you puree vegetables, will you reduce calories consumed?

Researchers at Pennsylvania State University offered 41 young men and women breakfast, lunch, and dinner once a week for three weeks.

At each meal, one dish—the carrot bread for breakfast, the macaroni and cheese for lunch, and the chicken-and-rice casserole for dinner—contained puréed vegetables in place of other ingredients.

Do Intermittent Fasting Benefits Include Living Longer?

“We’ve known for a long time that if you reduce the calorie intake of rats or mice, they live much longer,” says Mark Mattson, chief of the laboratory of neurosciences at the National Institute on Aging (NIA) in Baltimore. Do these intermittent fasting benefits carry over to humans?

What happens in species closer to humans is more complicated. Rhesus monkeys fed 30 percent fewer calories lived longer in a study at the University of Wisconsin, but not in a study at the NIA.