Watching calories is a popular practice for those looking to maintain a healthy weight. Calorie counting may also be necessary for people with serious health conditions like chronic kidney disease and diabetes who may be required to maintain strict diets with limited calories.
Choosing fresh and whole grain foods over processed and fast foods is an excellent start, but even healthy foods can sometimes be loaded with calories. Identifying the calorie count of some of your favourite foods may help in the battle.
In the Recommended Calories for the Sedentary, Moderately Active and Active of All-Ages chart it can be calculated how many calories are generally required for a persons diet. As an example in counting calories, let say an adult who is moderately active requires about 2,000 calories a day. If you divide those calories by three for breakfast, lunch and dinner, you have about 667 calories available per meal.
For an adult who has 667 calories available per meal may now make a meal plan also using the recommended food group servings. The Daily Servings Examples for Different Calorie Intake Levels chart gives a general breakdown of the expanded food groups recommended servings for the average daily calorie counts.
The food charts following show examples of the calorie count per single servings for various foods in the different food groups. These calorie counts per single serving can be added together to determine if a meal plan has stayed within its daily recommendation. If it exceeds recommendations then menu items can be looked at to determine if a high calorie item can be replaced with a lower calorie item.
Daily Calorie Recommendations for Child and Adult by Activity Level
Daily Servings Examples for Different Calorie Intake Levels
Whole Foods with High Calorie Counts
Calorie Count for Common Fruits and Vegetables per Single Serving
Calorie Count For Dairy Products, Proteins and Grains per Single Serving
Written by: J. Marshall
- Health Canada / Canada’s Food Guide / Estimated Energy Requirements: http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/fn-an/food-guide-aliment/basics-base/1_1_1-eng.php
- National Institute of Health / Nutrient Recommendations: Dietary Reference Intakes (DRI): https://ods.od.nih.gov/Health_Information/Dietary_Reference_Intakes.aspx
- The National Academies of Science / Dietary Reference Intakes Tables and Application: http://www.nationalacademies.org/hmd/Activities/Nutrition/SummaryDRIs/DRI-Tables.aspx
- CNPP.USDA.Gov / Estimated Calorie Needs Per Day By Age, Gender and Physical Activity Level: https://www.cnpp.usda.gov/sites/default/files/usda_food_patterns/EstimatedCalorieNeedsPerDayTable.pdf
- Calorie Control Center / Food Calorie Calcutator: http://caloriecontrol.org/healthy-weight-tool-kit/food-calorie-calculator/