Feb. 13, 2013
-- The numbers of calories, carbs, and fat grams that are in a food all are dependent upon the size of the portion of that food. For example, the label on a can of corn might tell you that there are 83 calories, 0.5 grams of fat, and 20.4 grams of carbohydrates in one serving. Those numbers are for one SERVING — not for the entire can.
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If you look at the very top of the label, you'll find the information about the serving size the numbers relate to. In the case of the canned corn, you'll see that those 83 calories, 0.5 grams of fat, and 20.4 grams of carbohydrates are in a ½-cup serving. And those numbers apply only if you don't add anything to the corn — like butter, for example.
Managing portion sizes is one of the most difficult parts of dieting for the purpose of losing weight. If you just put a serving of corn on your dinner plate without measuring it, it's almost a certainty that the serving will NOT be ½ cup.
The same thing is true about serving sizes of meat. Most calorie, carb, and fat numbers are given for a four-ounce serving. A four-ounce serving of meat is probably about half the size that you'd guess it would be. And the calorie, carb, and fat numbers given are ONLY for the meat. They don't include anything you might add to the meat during or after the cooking process.
Accurately counting calories, carbs, or fat grams can be done only if serving sizes are weighed and measured. You need a set of measuring cups, and you need a food scale. Measuring cups and a food scale are necessary tools for successful dieting to lose weight. You can't guess; you MUST measure!