Originally created 06/20/00

Calorie counter



How many calories are in an apple? Or a piece of fried chicken?

Calorie counting was once a key part of any weight-loss plan. But it fell out of dieting fashion in the late 1980s when diets focusing on fat gram consumption became popular. Then we counted carbohydrates and grams of sugar. But plain old calorie counting seems to be making a comeback.

"It was a lot easier to count just fat grams," said to Rosanne Kusz, a dietitian at University Hospital. "But what we found out was that we had to look at the total calories to get an accurate nutritional count. Because food is made up of carbohydrates, protein and fat, if you focus just on fat what happens to the carbohydrate count?"

Similarly, Ms. Kusz said if you focus on just carbohydrates or protein, you will not get an accurate depiction of the nutritional value.

"It is much more advantageous to look at calories than at one nutrient," she said.

Ms. Kusz recommends 1,200-1,500 calories a day for women trying to lose weight and 1,500-1,800 calories for men, but says the recommended daily caloric intake depends on age, height and a person's body mass index.

Because many foods we eat aren't labeled, counting calories can be difficult. Here is a list of popular foods and their suggested calorie count from the National Institute of Health.

COFFEE AND TEA

Black coffee - 3-5 calories
with 1 teaspoon sugar - 18-20 calories
with 1 teaspoon cream - 13-15 calories
Tea, plain - 0-1 calories
with 1 teaspoon sugar - 15-16 calories

CHIPS, PRETZELS AND CRACKERS

1 cup air-popped popcorn without butter - 25 calories
1 Dutch twisted pretzel - 60 calories
1 cup potato chips - 115 calories
1 cup corn chips - 230 calories
Butter cracker 2-inch diameter - 15 calories
Graham crackers (2) - 55 calories
1 saltine cracker - 50 calories

RAW FRUITS

Medium apple - 80 calories
Medium banana - 105 calories
Blueberries (1/2 cup) - 40 calories
Cherries (10) - 50 calories
Strawberries (1 cup) - 45 calories
Watermelon (1 cup) - 50 calories

Grapes (20) - 30 calories
Raisins (1/4 cup) - 110 calories

DAIRY PRODUCTS

Large egg (1) - 79 calories
Egg white (1) - 17 calories
Egg yolk (1) - 63 calories
Skim milk (1 cup) - 80 calories
1/2 percent milk (1 cup) - 90 calories
1 percent milk (1 cup) - 102 calories
2 percent milk (1 cup) - 120 calories
Whole milk (1 cup) - 150 calories
Chocolate whole milk (1 cup) - 250 calories
Cheddar cheese (1 ounce) - 114 calories
American cheese (1 ounce) - 110 calories
Swiss cheese (1 ounce) - 95 calories
Brie (1 ounce) - 100 calories

FAST FOOD

Burger King Whopper with cheese - 720 calories
BK Big Fish at Burger King - 710 calories
Fried chicken sandwich at Burger King - 700 calories
Fried chicken (crispy thigh piece at KFC) - 380 calories
Fried chicken (original recipe wing at KFC) - 172 calories
Taco salad at Taco Bell - 860 calories
Soft Taco Supreme at Taco Bell - 270 calories
Burrito Supreme at Taco Bell - 440 calories

NUTS (2 tablespoons)

Almonds - 105 calories
Cashews - 100 calories
Brazil nuts - 115 calories
Pecans, halves - 95 calories

MEAT - Calories shown are for 4-ounce portions - just slightly bigger than a deck of cards.

Ground beef - 351 calories
Chicken - 253 calories
Beef roast - 291 calories
Steak - 348 calories
Bacon - 630 calories
Venison - 143 calories

FISH (4-ounce serving)

Mackerel - 174 calories
Trout - 126 calories
Cod - 93 calories

BEVERAGES:

Carbonated drinks (8-oz. glass) Cola - 95 calories
Ginger Ale - 75 calories
Fruit flavors - 115 calories

FRUIT JUICES (1/2 cup)

Canned apple juice - 60 calories
Bottled grape juice - 80 calories
Orange juice that is canned and unsweetened - 55 calories
Grapefruit juice that is canned and unsweetened - 50 calories
Tomato juice - 25 calories

Reach Barnini Chakraborty at (706) 823-3332 or barnini.chakraborty@augustachronicle.com.