Why you should always read the label
When calorie and macro tracking, it’s important to check the product label.
MyFitnessPal is probably the most popular way to track calories. It was the app I used when I was calorie tracking, and I found it very useful and convenient. Except when you scanned something, and it came up with a completely different food product.
It’s also a very useful educational tool when calorie tracking. You start to learn what is high, and what is low, in whatever calories/macro you are looking at, and then put it into context of your goals.
You also learn that the same food, but different brand, might have slightly different macros.
As you can see, the difference between these yoghurts is quite big. I was buying them for their protein content. Usually around 9-10g is a fairly standard protein amount in yoghurt. When I saw the other yoghurts were around 4-5g, that’s half of what I expected. That’s crap.
For someone wanting fat loss, protein is important for satiety, and for the thermogenic effect.
For someone wanting to hit their minimum protein requirements, protein is also obviously important.
For someone wanting fat loss, it would be advised to also look at the calories, carbohydrate content, and the fat content. With yoghurts they typically don’t have carbs, but they will have fat. Of course, as you’ll see, there are fat free options, which will mean the calories mostly comes from protein.
Seeing as protein is a very useful macronutrient for fat loss, yoghurts often can come in fat free form.
When fat is taken out of a food, quite often it can make it a pretty boring taste. Fat carries a lot of taste. You’ll usually see one of two things added: carbs/sugar (which then adds calories back in) or sweeteners (which makes it sweet without adding calories. FYI, these are absolutely fine to consume, studies have shown this on multiple occasions, in all aspects of health, including all the odd things people associate with sweeteners. So consume them and don't worry.).
If you want to add some flavours yourself, without adding many calories, an easy way is to chuck in a handful of berries (these are very low in calories and full of fibre). You could also add drops of vanilla, almond extract, or caramel flavouring (or whatever flavour you want!).
Honey works well too, but be wary with the amount. Just because it’s ‘natural’ (which FYI, everything is natural, a better term would be ‘naturally occurring’, which makes fuck all difference to the calorie content, by the way, naturally occurring or not, a calorie is a calorie) doesn’t mean it’s ‘better’ for you in terms of calories. Honey still has calories).
So, after all that ranting:
- Check product labels - Double check MyFitnessPal against labels if you’re using it to make sure they’re correct - Calories count whether they are naturally occurring or not - Despite having the same type of food, brands and their calories/macros may differ - Add flavours with low calorie count products if you’re eating fat free foods and want more flavour