When it comes to weight loss, calories matter, but maybe not as much as you might think. If you are trying to lose weight, caloric intake does matter; you need to create a calorie deficit in order to lose weight. However, this doesn’t mean that calories are bad; in fact, there are many foods that are both healthy and highly caloric. Calories aren’t the only factor that matters when choosing food. Think about eating 900 calories in the form of a hamburger and fries compared to eating 900 calories of healthy food: while in both cases, you have eaten 900 calories, at least in the second scenario, you are benefiting from the nutrients from the health food, as well as intaking fewer saturated fats and less sodium. With this in mind, it is clear that calories are only part of what to consider when you are choosing what to eat. In this blog, we will go through five examples of healthy foods that also happen to be highly caloric.
Some people avoid nuts because not only are they caloric, they have high fat content. However, the fear of fat has proven to be not as valid as once thought. Nuts are high in fat, but it is unsaturated, or “good”, fat. Pistachios in particular are a great snack because they are lower in calories than many other types of nut, so you can eat more of them and feel more satisfied. Additionally, because you need to go through the effort of cracking the shell in order to eat pistachios, it slows you down, allowing you to avoid overeating. On top of that, there is research to support the idea that eating a small amount of nuts every day prevents heart disease (in the context of a healthy diet). Pistachios are a great snack to keep stashed in your desk at work or whenever you’re on the go.
Olive oil is a fantastic addition to any diet because it is a plentiful source of healthy fats and antioxidants. It also happens to be high calories; one tablespoon of olive oil is 119 calories. However, do not let the calorie count dissuade you from incorporating this healthy oil into your diet; among high-calorie health foods, it is king. The key is to have a light hand with it; measure out a tablespoon, which is a serving, anytime you use it. You can use it while you cook, and as a tasty base for a salad dressing (try olive oil, a squeeze of lemon, and a dash of salt and pepper for a tasty, simple, and healthy dressing!).
If you have been dieting, you have probably been avoiding dessert like the plague, but dark chocolate may be your happy medium. Dark chocolate is highly caloric, but it also includes flavonoids that lower cholesterol and blood pressure. Again, the key here is moderation; eat one ounce of dark chocolate a day (at least 70 percent cacao), and avoid milk or white chocolate.
Avocado is everywhere these days, and it isn’t hard to understand why. This delicious fruit adds a creamy quality to any dish, and is a veritable superfood due to its nutrient density. A rich source of potassium, fiber, magnesium, and vitamins C and E, avocado is a great source of monounsaturated fats, the healthiest type of fat. Avocado more than makes up for its high calorie count (275 calories per avocado) with these amazing health benefits.
Dried fruit is given a bad wrap by dieters because they are high in both calories and sugar. However, raisins are a great snack choice, despite their status as a dried fruit. They are a natural, whole food that contains no added sugar—all the sugar in raisins come from the fruit itself. One research study found that regularly consuming raisins as a snack had a positive impact for participants with type 2 diabetes in regards to their post-meal glucose levels and systolic blood pressure. Need a sweet snack? Grab two tablespoons of raisins to keep the calories in check while still enjoying the benefits of this food. Clearly, not all high-calorie foods are bad for your health goals. At Fitness Specialist, we offer high-quality exercise equipment in Lubbock that can help you make the most out of your goals. Shop our online store today!