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What's the deal with calories?

Confused by calories? We chatted with a dietitian to get the real deal on exactly why it’s important to pass by the cookies and eat those veggies. Keep reading to find out exactly why noshing healthy foods is the right way to go.

“When you’re trying to eat smart, you want to get more nutrient bang for your buck,” says Beth Wallace, dietitian at The Childrens Hospital of Philadelphia. That means picking, say, eggs and whole wheat toast for breakfast, as opposed to a muffin with the same amount of calories. “You want to go with the foods that have vitamins, minerals and proteins,” she tells us.

Think of it this way: Let’s say you want a sweet snack. You’re faced with a small orange and an Oreo. They both will give you a sugary fix and have the same amount of calories. But the orange will give ya a dose of fiber, vitamin C and potassium. The Oreo lacks all those goodies. “Added sugars are not going to give your body any benefit outside of immediate energy,” Beth shares. Eating added sugar will give you those highs and lows that are just plain icky. Our advice? Stick with the natural, nutrient-dense foods.

BY GL ON 3/5/2011 2:47:00 PM


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Skip the ice cream and make a chunky monkey shake. Blend 1 banana, 1 tablespoon of peanut butter and 1 cup of low-fat chocolate milk with 1 cup of ice for a protein-packed pick-me-up.
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