5 Foods Worth Swapping Out to Save Calories

Posted On Oct 3, 2015 By Erin Kuh, MBA, RD

5 Foods Worth Swapping Out to Save Calories

Choosing between reduced-fat, reduced-sugar, and lighter versions of foods can be overwhelming. And now more products like gluten-free and sugar-free make choices on the grocery store shelves even harder. Is it worth the calorie savings to make a switch or not? Not always, especially when flavor and overall quality of a food is compromised, leaving you less satisfied than if you’d eaten the full-fat or full-sugar version to begin with.

For example, stick with regular peanut butter instead of reduced-fat varieties and make sure to look at labels of frozen yogurt and Greek frozen yogurt before buying. Sometimes they have just as many calories as regular ice cream. The following foods are definitely worth swapping for, based on the calories saved and overall flavor and nutritional value gained.

Swap in Swap it for Why?
Chicken Sausage Brats With a variety of flavors, chicken sausages have robust taste but with a lot less fat and calories.
Calorie Savings: 50-100
Taco Shells Flour Tortillas Corn taco shells have more fiber, protein, and less fat and calories than fluffy white flour tortillas. Three taco shells have less calories than a single medium or large flour tortilla!
Calorie Savings per Shell: 130-150
Unsweetened Almond Milk Cow’s Milk Unsweetened almond milk has a creamy texture and mild nutty flavor.
Calorie Savings: 70 calories per cup
Sandwich or Bagel Thins Hamburger Buns or Regular Bagels Sandwich and bagel things are high fiber and contain 100-110 calories each. You don’t have to skip the bun or bread!
Calorie Savings: 100-150
Air-popped popcorn or 100-calorie popcorn bags Rice Cakes Rice cakes, often mistaken for a health food, are low in calories but lack taste and fiber to sustain you. Popcorn is a more satisfying and filling snack, with more fiber and protein than rice cakes.
2 rice cakes = 3 cups light popcorn