Pounds reduction: Sense whole on fewer calories

Choosing foodstuff that are much less calorie dense — meaning you get a more substantial portion size with a fewer range of calories — can enable you drop bodyweight and manage your hunger.

By Mayo Clinic Staff

Sense whole on fewer calories? It may possibly audio like one more gimmick for bodyweight reduction, but it’s not. The concept of electricity density really can enable with bodyweight reduction.

In fact, nicely-planned bodyweight-reduction eating plans, such as the Mayo Clinic Diet plan, use the concept of electricity density to enable you drop bodyweight and keep it off prolonged term.

Pounds reduction with additional food stuff, fewer calories

Only place, electricity density is the range of calories (electricity) in a precise sum of food stuff. Significant electricity density suggests that there are a large amount of calories in a tiny food stuff. Lower electricity density suggests there are handful of calories in a large amount of food stuff.

When you might be striving for bodyweight reduction, the goal is to eat low-electricity-dense foodstuff. That is, you want to eat a increased quantity of food stuff which is lower in calories. This assists you truly feel fuller on fewer calories.

Here’s a quick illustration with raisins and grapes. Raisins have a large electricity density — 1 cup of raisins has about 434 calories. Grapes have a low electricity density — 1 cup of grapes has about eighty two calories.

The keys to electricity density and bodyweight reduction

Three principal elements perform a position in what can make food stuff large or low in electricity density:

  • Water. Fruits and veggies normally have large drinking water and fiber articles, which give quantity and bodyweight but not calories. That’s why they are low-electricity-dense foodstuff. Grapefruit, for illustration, is about 90 % drinking water. Fifty percent a grapefruit has just 37 calories. Uncooked, fresh carrots are about 88 % drinking water. A medium carrot has only about twenty five calories.
  • Fiber. Significant-fiber foodstuff not only give quantity but also take longer to digest, generating you truly feel whole longer on fewer calories. Greens, fruits and whole grains all incorporate fiber. Popcorn is a fantastic illustration of a large-quantity, low-calorie whole grain. A person cup of air-popped popcorn has about thirty calories.
  • Excess fat. Excess fat is large in electricity density. A person pat of butter, for illustration, has pretty much the exact range of calories as 2 cups of uncooked broccoli. Meals that incorporate extra fat the natural way, such as dairy merchandise and many meats, or foodstuff with extra fat are larger in calories than are their leaner or lower extra fat counterparts.

Energy density and the food stuff pyramid

Switching lifestyle practices is in no way easy, and producing an consuming plan employing the electricity-density concept is no exception. The to start with stage is knowing which foodstuff are much better choices when it will come to electricity density.

Here’s a seem at electricity density by the classes in the Mayo Clinic Healthful Pounds Pyramid.


Most veggies are incredibly low in calories but large in quantity or bodyweight. Most veggies incorporate drinking water, which supplies bodyweight without having calories. Examples contain salad greens, asparagus, inexperienced beans, broccoli and zucchini.

To add additional veggies to your diet plan, top rated your pasta with sauteed veggies as an alternative of meat or cheese sauce. Reduce the meat portion on your plate and enhance the serving of veggies. Insert veggies to your sandwiches. Snack on uncooked veggies.


Pretty much all sorts of fruit suit into a healthful diet plan. But some fruits are lower calorie selections than other individuals are. Entire fresh, frozen and canned fruits without having syrup are fantastic choices. In contrast, fruit juices and dried fruits are concentrated sources of organic sugar and therefore have a large electricity density — additional calories — and they really don’t fill you up as a great deal.

To suit additional fruits into your diet plan, add blueberries to your cereal in the early morning. Try out mango or peach slices on whole-wheat toast with a tiny peanut butter and honey. Or toss some mandarin orange and peach slices into a salad. Hold whole fruit in a bowl within just easy sight or in the fridge and eat it whenever you like.


Quite a few carbs are possibly grains or manufactured from grains, such as cereal, rice, bread and pasta. Entire grains are the ideal option for the reason that they are larger in fiber and other significant nutrition.

Emphasize whole grains by simply just picking out whole-wheat bread, whole-wheat pasta, oatmeal, brown rice and whole-grain cereal as an alternative of refined grains. Since quite a few carbs are larger in electricity density, keep an eye on portion sizes.

Protein and dairy

These contain food stuff from each plant and animal sources. The healthiest lower electricity-dense selections are foodstuff that are large in protein but low in extra fat and calories, such as legumes (beans, peas and lentils, which are also fantastic sources of fiber), fish, skinless white-meat poultry, extra fat-cost-free dairy merchandise and egg whites.


Whilst fat are large-electricity-dense foodstuff, some fat are healthier than other individuals. Include things like smaller quantities of healthful monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fat in your diet plan. Nuts, seeds and oils, such as olive, flaxseed and safflower oils, incorporate healthful fat.


Like fat, sweets are commonly large in electricity density. Superior choices for sweets contain these that are low in extra extra fat and incorporate healthful substances, such as fruits, whole grains and low-extra fat dairy. Examples contain fresh fruit topped with low-extra fat yogurt, a cookie manufactured with whole-wheat flour or a scoop of low-extra fat ice cream.

The keys to sweets are to keep the serving size smaller and the substances healthful. Even a smaller piece of dark chocolate can suit into a bodyweight-reduction plan.

Building electricity density get the job done for you

When you stick to the concept of electricity density, you really don’t have to truly feel hungry or deprived. By which includes plenty of fresh fruits and veggies and whole grains in your diet plan, you can truly feel whole on fewer calories. You may even have home in your diet plan for a sweet on event.