We hate to be the people to break it to you, but that bran muffin you have actually for breakfast could be undermining your health (with several fat) and sabotaging her waistline (with excess calories). Exact same goes because that granola, banana chips, follow mix, turkey warm dogs, and any number of health-food pretenders that room often higher in fat, sugars, and calories, or lower in nutrients 보다 they would seem come be. Or they have actually all species of stuff included to them the you don"t yes, really need.

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The solution? "Read nutrition labels," advises Leslie J. Bonci, M.P.H., manager of sports nutrition at the college of Pittsburgh medical Center. Here are a dozen health-food pretenders that may seem great for you, but aren"t necessarily—plus suggestions on what to shot instead.

Also below, inspect out our advice on portion size, i beg your pardon is important for remaining slim.

(This write-up is reprinted from Food & Fitness, which you deserve to buy digital or at a newsstand. This consumer Reports newspaper will aid you learn how to eat good tasting meals and stay healthy and balanced on a budget; know when it pays to to buy organic; discover the supermarket traps the can expense you money; and also find out the keys of exactly how real-life households maintain a healthy and balanced weight and also stay in shape. Plus, obtain our to exclude, Ratings for well-known food items and exercise equipment.)


"Sweetened applesauce has actually lots of added sugar," states Elisa Zied, R.D., writer of "Nutrition at your Fingertips" (Alpha, 2009). A 1-cup serving have the right to have as much as 200 calories.Try this: Unsweetened applesauce generally has half the calories, Zied says. If it"s also tart for your taste, include some cinnamon or, better yet, eat an apple instead. You"ll acquire extra fiber together a bonus.


Yes, they"re made from good-for-you bananas. However they"re usually fried in coconut or palm oil, unhealthy resources of saturation fat. That"s why there deserve to be 210 calories and 13 grams of saturation fat in a serving.Try this: Have a banana. You"ll acquire lots of nutrients for half the calories and no fat.


Many bran muffins room the dimension of doorstops—actually 2 servings in one muffin. And also they"re frequently loaded through fat, sugar, and also calories, Bonci says. Slather ~ above butter and also you might too eat a frosted cupcake.Try this: Bran cereal with low-fat milk and also fresh fruit. Flakes, buds, or clusters—it"s her choice.


Couscous "Regular couscous is a processed, polished grain, similar to white pasta is," states Blatner. "It has tiny nutritional value."Try this: Whole-wheat couscous—or opt because that a entirety grain like quinoa or brown rice.


"It has a health halo because of the word yogurt, however it"s yes, really a high-sugar dessert," claims Dawn Jackson Blatner, R.D., spokeswoman for the American Dietetic Association, and also author the "The Flexitarian Diet" (McGraw-Hill, 2009). Generally, fro-yo has a nutritional profile that resembles light ice cream cream much more than plain yogurt.Try this: To obtain the probiotic services of plain yogurt, look because that the seal top top the brand of frozen yogurt describe "Live and active Cultures."

"The lot of fruit they contain is much less than 10 percent," says Bonci. "These are mostly just concentrated sugar."Try this: A small part of dried fruit, such as apricots or raisins. They"re denser in calories yet contain more nutrients.

It"s generally high in sugar, fat, and calories—and relatively low in vitamins and also minerals. Over there are around 400 calorie in a cup.Try this: A key of an airy, oat-based cereal, favor Cheerios, came out top in our last test the kid-friendly cereals. Because that extra crunch and also sweetness, include just a sprinkling that granola top top top.

The nuts room a good source the heart-healthy fats, and the dried fruits provide good-for-you vitamins, however some mixes have lots of calorie for simply a few ounces. One cup deserve to contain nearly 700 calories! and also because it"s a tasty finger food, it"s simple to overeat. Shot this: Cut calorie by do your very own combination. Mix a palmful the nuts and also seeds with a teaspoon or so of raisins.

A lot of turkey hot dogs are surprisingly high in fat— higher, even, than consistent hot dogs, claims Bonci. Some contain lots of sodium and also nitrates.Try this: A turkey chest sandwich—unless you"re really craving that warm dog flavor. If that"s the case, review packages and also go for the version v the lowest amount the fat.

"They might contain the colour of the rainbow, but they don"t count as a offer of veggies," says Bonci. Worse, they"re commonly high in fat and also calories.Try this: Air-popped popcorn or dried veggies. Bonci proposal the just Tomatoes brand that dried vegetables because they have no included fat, salt, or something else.

Sure, they have actually some included nutrients, however they"re often packed through sugar and sometimes caffeine, states Catherine Christie, R.D., chair that the department of nutrition and dietetics in ~ the college of phibìc Florida in Jacksonville.Try this: plain old water or sparkling water with a squeeze from a lemon, lime, or orange.

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They"re typically huge—enough for two people, really—and high in calories and also sometimes fat. Shot this: A sandwich top top wholegrain or whole-wheat bread. When shopping because that bread, inspect the ingredients: make sure whole grain tops the list.

Portion size, or just how much the a details food you actually eat, is important for staying slim. Yet most of the time you need to "guesstimate" the best serving size."While the state "serving" and also "portion" are frequently used interchangeably, they in reality mean various things," claims Marisa Moore, R.D., national spokeswoman for the American Dietetic Association.A serving is a standard industry amount used to identify calorie counts top top food labels. A portion is the amount of food you in reality eat. Together food containers, restaurant portions, and drink bottles have come to be supersized, the gap in between servings and also portions has gained really out of whack. And also what us eat is regularly dictated through the dimension of the container or the dish we order—not the recommended serving size posted top top nutrition labels and websites.Even if girlfriend do examine the labels, it"s not always easy to judge what constitutes a true serving, in component because it"s usually given in terms of weight, i beg your pardon the typical person could find tough to transform to a real-world amount. ~ all, what does an oz look like? How about a gram?To see just how accurately world can judge a serving, we conducted our own test: us gave about 100 staffers document plates and asked them to dish the end one serving every of three foods: dry-roasted peanuts, cheddar-cheese cubes, and also chicken wings. We gave each serving size in weight, the way it usually appears on food labels. Probably they were on to the objective of our experiment: lock were an ext likely to measure the end too small food than too much. But their all-over-the-map guesses highlight just how difficult it is come judge how much come eat—even once you"re trying!

use a food scale to weigh sections so friend can build an eye because that what a true serving looks like. You have the right to buy a range for much less than $20.

Cheese cubes1 offer = 1 ounce = around 4 cubesGuesses ranged native 1 cube come 5 cubesChicken wings1 offer = 4.4 ounces = about 4 wingsGuesses ranged native 1 wing come 4 wings

Peanuts1 serving = 1 oz = 39 peanutsGuesses ranged native 5 peanuts to 50 peanutsUse these visual cues to referee serving sizes and limit calories:3 ounces of meat = a deck the cards1 cup of cereal or cook pasta = a baseball1.5 ounces the cheese = 4 stack dice1/2 cup fresh fruit = fifty percent a baseball