Everyone tries to avoid eating calorie-rich treats – but is it reasonable to go through life without enjoying them? Studies show that we are born with a taste for sweet things, and some claim that most diets fail because at the end of the day we crack and eat what we love anyway.
Paradoxically many people find that a daily treat helps to maintain body weight. A single treat a day gradually reduces our craving for sweet things. It is far easier to maintain a diet and keep our weight down in the long-term when sweets become a part of our lives.
What makes cakes so rich in calories? It’s certainly not the sugar, because one gram contains only 4 calories, while one gram of fat contains 9 calories - more than double. The average cake contains one cup of oil or butter, with 1,700 calories! The best way to reduce calories in sweet treats is to reduce fat content, and the secret is to do so without anyone – especially children – knowing that they are eating a low calorie treat.
Surprisingly not many people are aware of the many delicious cakes that are low-calorie. Everyone loves the fine taste of meringue cookies and Italian biscotti, but they are not considered as dietetic. The truth is that these treats contain no fats. A large meringue cookie has only 50 calories, compared to 250-300 calories in a regular cookie. Italian biscotti, even with chocolate chips or almonds, have only 70 calories.
Studies show that food volume more than calorie content influences our sense of satiation. A cupcake with a sweet meringue topping contains just 10% of the hundreds of calories found in one with a butter-based icing. Neither adults nor children will suspect they are eating a low-calorie treat, as the sugar content in both is the same and they are equally tasty.
Eat cupcakes daily without gaining weight!
(and without working out or using fake sugars)
Tips for enjoying sweet treats without gaining weight:
1) Choose low-fat cakes like angel cake, torte, cheese cake, and biscotti or meringue cookies.
2) Never reduce sugar quantities in cake recipes, as cakes that are not sweet do not satisfy the palate.
3) For moist and tasty results, place a container with water on the bottom of the oven. The steam formed while the cake is baking makes the cake softer with no extra calories.
4) If a recipe requires whipping or double cream, replace 1/3 of the amount with Greek yogurt. No one will ever know the difference.
5) Top cupcakes with meringue. It is sweet, has a marshmallow flavor and a large amount contains a mere 30 calories.
6) Choose cake recipes that require beating (batter cakes), as these have fewer calories.
7) Choose recipes that contain a lot of fruit, as these reduce the overall calorie count.
8) Choose cakes ingredients with air and volume, such as Chocolate Rice Krispies, Even when mixed with chocolate, these ingredients produce cakes with fewer calories than in regular cakes.
9) If you love butter, don’t avoid it entirely. Instead of putting a large amount of butter in a muffin, top it with a tablespoon of streusel (butter crumbs). You can enjoy a low-calorie muffin with a buttery aroma at a cost of 30 calories.
10) Avoid cakes, and especially toppings, that contain large amounts of oil or butter,
Butter-based toppings are unhealthy and contain hundreds of calories.
A recently published book Naturally up to 160 calories. Everyday delicious treats!
offers the perfect solution:
For recipes and additional information on how to make tasty low-fat cakes, go to www.naturally-
Revital Federbush is a journalist covering health and nutrition issues for the last 22 years. She has over 10 years of experience in developing recipes for cooking and baking.