Food, Kids, The Momma Body

It’s Just a Bite, Right?

Is nibbling on your kid’s food keeping you from losing weight?

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First off, let me just sing the delicious praises of the masterful, beautiful food item, the Grilled Cheese. Is anything so deliriously satisfying, so fantastically savory and crisp and buttery and gooey? I. LOVE. GC. Some nights, when I’m making it for my toddler (have I mentioned it’s basically all he’ll eat?), I have to literally pinch my mouth shut with my fingers to keep myself from just slicing off a strip and snarfing it up. I’m a lot better about this nowadays, but there was a time not so long ago when I’d have a quick little bite of whatever I was making for my kids. I did it because I was usually hungry and in a hurry, and sometimes because I was bored. To be honest, it developed into a weird habit.  But I always excused it, telling myself, oh, it’s just a bite.

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But I got to thinking, if you added all the bites up, what would that number look like? How many calories could be in those bites? So, I decided to find out.

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The Plan:

  • I’ll log what I make for my kids all day for one day. Now, this is obviously not an exact science because they eat differently every day and, of course, your kids don’t eat exactly what mine do, and so forth. But I think they eat a pretty average diet for 5 and 2 year olds in this country.
  • To approximate how many calories are in a bite, I’ll look up the numbers in a serving and divide by 10.
  • For foods that are unpackaged I’ll use the site calorieking.com. It’s super easy to use and doesn’t require any sign up.

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Here are the results:

MealFoodCalories
Breakfast: 2% Greek Yogurt with Honey23.4
Whole Wheat Toast with Butter and Jelly34
Snack 1:Popcorn, Oil Popped5.5
Snack 2:Pretzels and Raisins25
Lunch:PB&J Sandwiches35
Green Grapes12
Mozzarella Cheese Chunks7.2
Baby Carrots4
Snack:Pretzels and Green Grapes24
Dinner:Plain Hot Dogs16
Scrambled Eggs in a Tortilla (Son 1)31.3
Cheese Sandwich (Son 2)20
Apple Slices5.3
Broccoli (they did NOT eat this)3
Treat:M&Ms (be honest, you ate a whole handful)34
Total: 279.7

This number was crazy to me! 1/10th of a serving is a really tiny bite, so this was a pretty conservative estimate. Imagine if you ate the crusts you cut off a grilled cheese? That is something I’ve done hundreds of times and never thought a thing about it. Here are some items that are equal to around 280 calories:

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  • Sausage Breakfast Burrito from McDonald’s
  • Bowl of Cheerios with a banana
  • Salmon filet with a side
  • Green bean and mushroom risotto
  • Small taco salad
  • 2 scoops of ice cream
  • Twix, both of em

In other words, a meal. An entire meal. So, if you’re struggling with losing weight and you nibble, try stopping it completely and watch your life change.

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