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QCKFOX SparkPoints: (724)
Fitness Minutes: (115)
Posts: 85
12/10/12 12:47 P

thanks everyone

HHB4181 SparkPoints: (83,723)
Fitness Minutes: (38,083)
Posts: 3,203
12/5/12 6:02 P

This is on SP under Healthy Lifestyle, Nutrition, conversion calculator

CHRISTINA791 SparkPoints: (62,639)
Fitness Minutes: (93,935)
Posts: 789
12/5/12 5:56 P

Eta: To answer your questions from the second post:

"I'm allowed 0.5 of a "cup"
what would that be in ounces? "

It depends on what you're measuring. Are you following the Spark menu, and that's what it's given you? Here are some options:

1. Measure out half a cup (125 mL) and let it stand at that.

2. Measure out half a cup and then weigh it on the food scale so you know what the conversion is for that particular type of food (every food is going to have a different volume to weight conversion). This is the best solution if you're given a volume but your nutritional information is in weight.

3. Look online for nutritional info that gives you the units of measurement that you want. I do this a lot, since the Spark database is US-centric. Once I find a listing that works better for me (and I've checked it over to make sure it looks accurate), I make my own Spark listing and use that. This is a good option if it's a food you eat frequently.

For your example, I did a search for 'Chickpeas nutritional information', and found a listing that gives one cup as 164g (which would be about 5.8 ounces). I'd still probably go with option number 2 and weigh it myself, just to confirm, but the information is usually out there if you want to find it.

"(what are the advantages of using the word "cup" and not using specific weight measurements??)"

The main advantage is that a lot more people own measuring cups than food scales. For someone starting out, the idea of weighing food can seem intimidating and time consuming (it's really not). Cups are something most Americans are familiar with and have on hand, so a lot of weight loss programs use them.

I personally prefer weight because it's more accurate than trying to measure volume (unless it's a food that fits a cup perfectly). It keeps me accountable and makes it impossible to start fudging my portion sizes. It's amazing how often a cup of something irregularly shaped can be closer to 1.25 or 1.5 cups. Weight is always just weight.

Unfortunately, until food scales are common in every kitchen, you'll see a lot of measurements by the cup and may have to do a little more work to translate it to weight.

Edited by: CHRISTINA791 at: 12/5/2012 (17:58)
YOJULEZ SparkPoints: (15,981)
Fitness Minutes: (120)
Posts: 2,171
12/5/12 5:45 P

This might be helpful for your specific question about chickpeas:
It gives gram measurements but that's easy enough to convert to ounces.

Sometimes when I'm trying to figure stuff out, I'll just google my question. So like for your chickpeas I googled "how much is a half cup of chickpeas in ounces".

The only advantage of using cup measurements is ease of use. The normal cook, at least in the US, does not own a kitchen scale. So, things are written with volume measurements and everyone just uses a set of measuring cups to measure things out. I personally prefer weights too.

NIRERIN Posts: 13,861
12/5/12 5:44 P

go to the think i provided in my first post. look up chickpeas [or garbanzos, i forget who calls them which]. you'll get several options of what kind you have, so pick the one you want to measure and then click on it. on the next screen, you'll see a pull down menu that lets you choose the unit you want to measure in. it will have cups, grams and ounces. and beside the cup measurement, you'll see the gram equivalent. for chickpeas a cup weighs 240 grams. a cup of raw spinach weighs 30 grams. so those different weights are why there isn't a straight conversion. each food has a different weight and volume and that affects how much you can cram in the cup and how much the resultant cup would weigh.

and honestly, as easy as i know it is to use a scale, i tend to use cups. i can use them in place of spoons to get food from one container to another, and it's easier than taring out my scale and trying to remember grams.

Edited by: NIRERIN at: 12/5/2012 (17:48)
CHRISTINA791 SparkPoints: (62,639)
Fitness Minutes: (93,935)
Posts: 789
12/5/12 5:40 P

Ounces are a bit of a pain, aren't they? The problem is that an 'ounce' can either refer to a weight or a volume measurement (which will usually be called fluid ounces). You can convert cups to fluid ounces and back, but you can't convert between cups and weight ounces, because the weight depends entirely on the food you're measuring. Think of a cup of popcorn vs. a cup of chocolate chips. Obviously the chocolate chips are going to be a lot heavier than the same volume of popcorn.

So, cups to fluid ounces are easy. There's actually a conversion calculator on your nutrition tracker that will do the math for you, along with converting metric volumes to cups (I'm guessing you're from a metric country, since you specify American cups. I'm Canadian, so I run into the conversions a lot).

If your ounce of Spinach is talking about the weight - which it usually is for anything not liquid - than your best solution is a food scale. Most are digital and will display many different units of weight. I'm sure there are some conversions available online that will tell you approximately how many grams a cup of spinach or carrots or potato chips weighs, but for a $20 investment you can just weigh directly and be done with it. Personally, I think a food scale is just as practical and important to have in the kitchen as a set of measuring cups.

One other point: Some nutrition labels will give you both a volume and a weight measurement as a serving size. For example, one serving of the cereal I eat is 2/3 cup or 55g. That doesn't mean 2/3 cup of food is always 55g of weight, but for that particular product you can use either. I generally use weight if it's available, since it's usually the more accurate measurement.

YOJULEZ SparkPoints: (15,981)
Fitness Minutes: (120)
Posts: 2,171
12/5/12 5:25 P

If it's raw spinach, .6 of a cup will be very little weight wise, like a fraction of an ounce. Like NIREIN said there is no way to convert a cup measurement of a non-liquid ingredient to ounces.

QCKFOX SparkPoints: (724)
Fitness Minutes: (115)
Posts: 85
12/5/12 5:23 P

fluid ounces is the weight of someting liquid - I need to work out how to weigh out chick peas in order to stick to the calorie limits for the day

I'm allowed 0.5 of a "cup"

what would that be in ounces?

(what are the advantages of using the word "cup" and not using specific weight measurements??)

NIRERIN Posts: 13,861
12/5/12 4:44 P

a cup is 8 fluid ounces. so .6 of a cup is 4.8 fluid ounces.
if you want weight ounces, you would have to look for each item because each item would weigh a different thing. is a great resource that has different units for measurement so that you can look for the one you want to measure in rather than convert.

QCKFOX SparkPoints: (724)
Fitness Minutes: (115)
Posts: 85
12/5/12 4:31 P

is there a table somewhere where I can find out what 0.6 of an American "cup" is in ounces?

I'm picturing a tiny scap of spinach in the bottom of a coffee mug! and its not motivating me!


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