Time to read: 4 min

So many calories you eat when you're not paying attention

20 May 2022|Nutrition

If you consider that your calorie requirement is most likely (less than) 2,000 calories per day, you really need to pay close attention if you don't want to go over that. And that's quite a challenge, especially somewhere between Friday afternoon and the hangover on Sunday.

Think about it: in the list below, you'll see how many calories you consume if you're not paying attention for an evening or intentionally cheating.

Watching sports

On TV, or worse: at the bar. Even though you might be on the edge of your seat during such an evening, the chance of resisting the snacks, chips, and rounds of beer is pretty slim. Your calorie intake quickly heads into the thousands. Half a liter of beer already packs 200 calories, a quarter bag of chips around 350. Add a few servings of fried snacks (about 240 calories per serving), and you're soon hitting your daily buffer.

To limit the damage, you might beat your friends to the punch and suggest a more fitness-friendly drink, like a vodka soda. That way, you can save a few hundred calories. If you're watching the game at the pub, order your own drinks and skip the rounds. Pro-tip: have a nutritious meal with slow carbs and lots of fiber beforehand so you stay satisfied longer and are less tempted to snack.

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Dining Out

Going out for dinner means inviting a calorie surplus. You don't know how a dish is prepared, so you can't see what calorie-loaded ingredients went into it, and you tend to eat larger portions when you're not cooking yourself. Plus, if you're celebrating (or not), that often involves a bottle of wine and a dessert. On average, having a main course dining out can easily rack up 1,300 calories. If you add a dessert, you can easily bump up those numbers.

The good news: you can dine out with fewer calories on the tally. Skip the bread and herb butter you often get upon arrival, limit yourself to one or two glasses of wine, opt out of junk food, and consider asking for extra veggies instead of fries with your main course.

Brunching with Family

You don't need an Italian family to overeat during a brunch. Unless it's your own birthday, you tend to overeat when with family. You want to taste a bit of everything, and that infamous tiramisu from your aunt? You never skip that (also not allowed by her). Before you end up feeling stuffed all evening, consider that you can have small portions of everything. Grab a smaller plate from the cupboard and drink a few glasses of water before eating. It really helps, as such a brunch can easily pack 1,500 to 2,000 calories.

Healthy snack

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Rough Mornings

These are the riskiest. Alcohol and lack of sleep make for bad food choices. That salad you had in the fridge? Completely ignored. Gobbling up greasy hangover grub is your only to-do on such a day. If, for instance, you start your day with American pancakes, loaded toppings, or other comfort food and then have fries and a burger for lunch, you'll be chowing down quite a few calories. On average, a rough morning breakfast racks up around 1,500 calories, while a healthy breakfast usually contains 400-500 calories.

Letting loose occasionally is totally fine. But doing it all the time might not be the wisest. This article aims to give you some insights. Enjoy yourself, but in moderation. And don't feel bad about having a day where you eat everything you desire. It's about finding balance. However, if you have a goal, like losing weight, ask yourself what matters more to you: reaching your goal or having a day of indulgence! These kinds of days can really dent your progress, as you can see.

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