Nutrition Articles

50 Easy Ways to Cut 100 Calories

Lose Weight By Making Small Changes

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Cutting calories may seem like a daunting task, especially when you're trying to cut hundreds of calories each day to lose the recommended 1-2 pounds per week. Will you go hungry? Will your meals taste like cardboard? Will you have to give up your favorite foods?

Don't worry. When you make small changes, the only difference you'll notice is a drop in the scale! Keep in mind that cutting calories can involve smart substitutions or changes in portion sizes, too. Just remember, start small and work your way up to a new—and healthier—way of eating.

Beverages
  • 1. Split a 20 oz. bottle of regular soda with a friend. Save 120 calories!
  • 2. Drink 1 cup of diet soda instead of 1 cup of regular soda. Save 97 calories!
  • 3. Swap a 12-oz. glass of whole milk for skim milk. Save 96 calories!
  • 4. Drink two 12-oz. light beers this weekend instead of two regular beers. Save 100 calories!
  • 5. Instead of 1 cup of prepared lemonade, try 1 cup of a sugar free variety. Save 103 calories!
  • 6. Eat a medium orange instead of drinking 12 oz. of fresh orange juice. Save 106 calories!
  • 7. Prepare your coffee with 4 oz. of fat-free half and half instead of regular half and half. Save 88 calories!
  • 8. Enjoy 5 oz. of chocolate milk instead of 5 oz. of a chocolate milkshake Save 110 calories!

Breakfast
  • 9. Spread your whole grain waffles with 2 tablespoons of maple syrup instead of 1 tablespoon of margarine or butter. Save 110 calories!
  • 10. Top your whole grain bagel with 1.5 oz of fat-free cream cheese in lieu of regular. Save 108 calories!
  • 11. Try 1 oz. of maple turkey bacon instead of maple (pork) bacon. Save 118 calories!
  • 12. Ditch the glazed donut and eat a bagel instead. Save 93 calories!
  • 13. Eat 3/4 cup oatmeal instead of a 1-1/2 cups of oatmeal. Save 97 calories!
  • 14. Substitute 3 oz. of turkey sausage for a serving of pork sausage. Save 120 calories!
  • 15. Grab a small bagel instead of a medium bagel. Save 99 calories!
Snacks and Sides
  • 16. Dip 1 cup celery into your favorite salsa or hummus instead of 1 oz. of tortilla chips. Save 125 calories!
  • 17. Eat an entire medium apple instead of a small (5 oz.) candy apple. Save 118 calories!
  • 18. Snack on 1 oz. of baked potato chips instead of regular chips. Save 90 calories!
  • 19. Better yet, eat 2 oz. pretzels instead of the same size portion of potato chips. Save 94 calories!
  • 20. Bake 2 oz of oven fries in lieu of 2 oz. of fast food fries. Save 88 calories!
  • 21. Forgo a 6-oz portion of potato chips and nosh on 6 oz. of tortilla chips instead. Save 96 calories!
  • 22. Say no to 1 oz of deep-fried onion rings and instead enjoy 1 oz. of grilled onions with your meal. Save 92 calories!
  • 23. Try 1.5 oz. of fresh grapes instead of 1.5 oz. of raisins. Save 98 calories!
  • 24. Enjoy a healthy 8-oz. baked potato instead of 8 oz. of French fries. Save 104 calories!
  • 25. Choose 3 oz. of mozzarella cheese for your sandwich instead of Swiss cheese. Save 108 calories!
  • 26. Swap 1 cup of canned, crushed pineapple in water for pineapple canned in heavy syrup. Save 119 calories!

Lunch and Dinner
  • 27. Cut a 6 oz. steak in half and take the other portion home for another meal. Save 111 calories!
  • 28. Order a skinless chicken breast instead of chicken with skin. Save 102 calories!
  • 29. Substitute a fat-free beef hot dog for a regular beef hot dog. Save 104 calories!
  • 30. Build a sandwich with1.5 oz. of deli turkey breast instead of an equivalent of hard salami. Save 119 calories!
  • 31. Instead of 6 oz. of crispy fried chicken with skin, eat 6 oz. baked chicken with skin. Save 102 calories!
  • 32. Choose a slice of thin crust pizza over thick crust pizza. Save 106 calories!
  • 33. Add vegetable toppings to your pizza order and say no to pepperoni. Save 100 calories!
  • 34. Forget broccoli cheddar soup. A 7-oz portion of vegetable soup is better. Save 119 calories!
  • 35. Enjoy 12 oz of steamed rice (choose brown rice when possible) as an alternative to fried rice. Save 96 calories!
  • 36. Unwrap your 13-inch tortilla wrap and make a sandwich on a 3-oz. whole grain bagel instead. Save 96 calories!
  • 37. Eat only half of your hamburger or sandwich bun. Save 100 calories!
Condiments and Sauces
  • 38. Dip your salad in a side of ranch dressing (2 tsp.) instead of pouring 2 Tbsp of dressing on the salad. Save 97 calories!
  • 39. Skip the 5 oz. of Alfredo sauce and eat a whopping 7 oz. of marinara sauce. Save 129 calories!
  • 40. Add flavor to vegetables with 3 oz. of hot sauce—not 1 oz of bleu cheese dressing. Save 117 calories!
  • 41. Top your salad with 1.5 oz. reduced-fat Italian dressing instead of regular. Save 96 calories!
  • 42. Try either cheese or croutons on your salad—not both Save 72-116 calories!
  • 43. Instead of 3 oz. of regular sour cream, use a fat-free variety. Save 120 calories!
  • 44. Use 2 Tbsp reduced-fat light mayonnaise instead of regular mayonnaise. Save 102 calories!
Sweets and Desserts
  • 45. Serve ice cream in a dish instead of a waffle cone. Save 121 calories!
  • 46. Try a healthier peanut granola bar instead of a peanut candy bar. Save 94 calories!
  • 47. Finish dinner with 1 cup of low-fat frozen yogurt instead of regular ice cream. Save 121 calories!
  • 48. Substitute 5 oz. of apple pie, with 5 oz. of baked apple crisp. Save 85 calories!
  • 49. Instead of 4 oz. of regular chocolate pudding, enjoy a sugar-free portion. Save 92 calories!
  • 50. Leave that 1/2 cup of strawberry ice cream in the freezer. Enjoy 1/2 cup of fresh strawberries topped with 2 Tbsp of fat-free whipped cream as an alternative. Save 102 calories!
Cutting 100 calories here and there is an easy way to form healthier eating habits without feeling deprived or hungry. With just a few of these tricks up your sleeve, you'll be on your way to reaching your goals in no time!

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Member Comments

  • Good suggestions. Thank you.
  • CACUJIN
    I have noticed that there are many aggressive posters under this article. Folks that believe they are better than others because they know something. I also noticed that most of those noisy posters are not active in SparkPeople currently. Maybe they didn't know as much as they thought?

    Much of the suggestions were not applicable to me. I won't drop sugar and fat because those two add flavor and I NEED flavor in my food. Don't drink soda anymore, no reason, just somehow switched over to fruit juice. (the juice and the soda at 10oz. carried the same calories so I didn't save anything.) :p

    Since I am not very much over my desired weight, I am thinking that it might be easier for me to burn 100 extra calories than to cut 100 from my meals.
  • BILLTHOMSON
    Great article, I believe I need to re-adjust my calorie intake, who would of thought, I need to eat more.
  • YMWONG22
    Doable pointers. Thanks for the suggestions.
  • Just don't drink any soda surely is a better suggestion?
  • The number of times you fall down is irrelevant. The number of times you have the courage to get back up is what matters.
  • #17 literally made me lol.
  • Sorry, not impressed. I'm doing 80% of suggestions and the rest do not apply to me. I longer want artificial sweeteners. (They make me want to eat.)
  • One thing I've noticed is that by checking the serving size on packages I often save calories just by eating only the recommended serving size.
  • Most of these are things I do already. Didn't learn anything new with this one...
  • I use salsa on baked potato instead of sour cream and butter. So yummy. Mixing frozen fruit with oatmeal instead of sugar is also good.
  • Soda is so bad for you! My suggestion if I may??: Save DOUBLE the calories and promote a long life for you AND your friend by quitting soda and NOT sharing it with those you love!!!

    "The food you eat can either be the safest most powerful form of medicine or the slowest form of poison" -Ann Wigmore
  • This article was so targeted to meat and dairy eaters! Not at all helpful to me, but very reassuring that being vegan cuts all those calories effortlessly!

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