Excess weight decline: Really feel complete on less calories

Deciding on foodstuff that are less calorie dense — indicating you get a larger sized part dimension with a less variety of calories — can help you lose body weight and manage your hunger.

By Mayo Clinic Employees

Really feel complete on less calories? It may possibly sound like a further gimmick for body weight decline, but it’s not. The concept of vitality density actually can help with body weight decline.

In fact, nicely-planned body weight-decline weight loss plans, these as the Mayo Clinic Diet plan, use the concept of vitality density to help you lose body weight and preserve it off extended time period.

Excess weight decline with more foods, less calories

Simply place, vitality density is the variety of calories (vitality) in a particular volume of foods. Higher vitality density indicates that there are a ton of calories in a minimal foods. Reduced vitality density indicates there are number of calories in a ton of foods.

When you happen to be striving for body weight decline, the purpose is to take in lower-vitality-dense foodstuff. That is, you want to take in a greater volume of foods that is reduced in calories. This helps you sense fuller on less calories.

Here is a quick instance with raisins and grapes. Raisins have a significant vitality density — one cup of raisins has about 434 calories. Grapes have a lower vitality density — one cup of grapes has about eighty two calories.

The keys to vitality density and body weight decline

3 principal things participate in a role in what helps make foods significant or lower in vitality density:

  • Drinking water. Fruits and vegetables frequently have significant water and fiber articles, which present volume and body weight but not calories. That is why they’re lower-vitality-dense foodstuff. Grapefruit, for instance, is about ninety p.c water. Fifty percent a grapefruit has just 37 calories. Uncooked, refreshing carrots are about 88 p.c water. A medium carrot has only about 25 calories.
  • Fiber. Higher-fiber foodstuff not only present volume but also get for a longer period to digest, earning you sense complete for a longer period on less calories. Veggies, fruits and complete grains all contain fiber. Popcorn is a fantastic instance of a significant-volume, lower-calorie complete grain. Just one cup of air-popped popcorn has about 30 calories.
  • Body fat. Body fat is significant in vitality density. Just one pat of butter, for instance, consists of practically the very same variety of calories as two cups of uncooked broccoli. Foodstuff that contain extra fat by natural means, these as dairy items and a variety of meats, or foodstuff with included fat are greater in calories than are their leaner or reduced extra fat counterparts.

Electricity density and the foods pyramid

Altering lifestyle behaviors is never ever uncomplicated, and developing an eating plan working with the vitality-density concept is no exception. The very first move is realizing which foodstuff are superior solutions when it comes to vitality density.

Here is a appear at vitality density by the categories in the Mayo Clinic Healthful Excess weight Pyramid.


Most vegetables are very lower in calories but significant in volume or body weight. Most vegetables contain water, which delivers body weight without calories. Illustrations contain salad greens, asparagus, green beans, broccoli and zucchini.

To insert more vegetables to your diet regime, top your pasta with sauteed vegetables instead of meat or cheese sauce. Lower the meat part on your plate and enhance the serving of vegetables. Incorporate vegetables to your sandwiches. Snack on uncooked vegetables.


Basically all kinds of fruit fit into a healthy diet regime. But some fruits are reduced calorie possibilities than some others are. Full refreshing, frozen and canned fruits without syrup are fantastic solutions. In distinction, fruit juices and dried fruits are concentrated resources of all-natural sugar and for that reason have a significant vitality density — more calories — and they do not fill you up as considerably.

To fit more fruits into your diet regime, insert blueberries to your cereal in the morning. Consider mango or peach slices on complete-wheat toast with a minimal peanut butter and honey. Or toss some mandarin orange and peach slices into a salad. Preserve complete fruit in a bowl within uncomplicated sight or in the fridge and take in it whenever you like.


Quite a few carbohydrates are either grains or designed from grains, these as cereal, rice, bread and pasta. Full grains are the most effective solution simply because they’re greater in fiber and other critical nutrients.

Emphasize complete grains by only picking complete-wheat bread, complete-wheat pasta, oatmeal, brown rice and complete-grain cereal instead of refined grains. Due to the fact lots of carbohydrates are greater in vitality density, preserve an eye on part sizes.

Protein and dairy

These contain foods from both plant and animal resources. The healthiest reduced vitality-dense possibilities are foodstuff that are significant in protein but lower in extra fat and calories, these as legumes (beans, peas and lentils, which are also fantastic resources of fiber), fish, skinless white-meat poultry, extra fat-cost-free dairy items and egg whites.


While fat are significant-vitality-dense foodstuff, some fat are much healthier than some others. Involve small quantities of healthy monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fat in your diet regime. Nuts, seeds and oils, these as olive, flaxseed and safflower oils, contain healthy fat.


Like fat, sweets are usually significant in vitality density. Very good solutions for sweets contain all those that are lower in included extra fat and contain healthy elements, these as fruits, complete grains and lower-extra fat dairy. Illustrations contain refreshing fruit topped with lower-extra fat yogurt, a cookie designed with complete-wheat flour or a scoop of lower-extra fat ice cream.

The keys to sweets are to preserve the serving dimension small and the elements healthy. Even a small piece of dim chocolate can fit into a body weight-decline plan.

Creating vitality density work for you

When you adhere to the concept of vitality density, you do not have to sense hungry or deprived. By including plenty of refreshing fruits and vegetables and complete grains in your diet regime, you can sense complete on less calories. You could even have room in your diet regime for a sweet on occasion.