LET'S be honest, counting calories isn't fun and most of us don't want to do it at all.
Not to mention your enjoyment of your favourite treats is completely ruined when you work out how many calories is in it.
Being aware of the number in particular foods you eat is actually important given we tend to burn fewer calories each day thanks to our increasingly sedentary lifestyles.
It may also come as a surprise to hear that there are a number of very simple supermarket swaps many of us could make that would help us to significantly cut our calorie intake.
But you can still eat similar types of food you enjoy.
Here are just some of the smart swaps that will slash hundreds of calories from your regular diet.
1. Ice cream for sorbet
You know the feeling, you have just sat down after dinner and suddenly have an urge for an ice-cream so you convince your partner or flat mate to duck out to the local supermarket to grab you a treat.
Now if they come back with a box of classic, popular ice-creams you will most likely be about to consume 200-300 calories in a single ice-cream.
On the other hand if you choose a fruit based ice lollie or sorbet you will still enjoy a treat but one with fewer than half the calories and literally no fat.
2. Shortbread for rich tea biscuits
The larger the biscuit, naturally the more calories.
While a shortbread may not seem like a bad choice occasionally, it contains lashings of butter and cream so can contain double the calories and fat than that of a plain sweet biscuit.
3. Fresh bloomer for pre-sliced bread
The larger the bread slices, the greater the amount of both carbs and calories.
Since many of the typical bread slices we find at supermarkets barely fit into the toaster it is a sign that our bread is too big.
When you take a closer look at some of the large bread slices sold in supermarkets, a single slice can contain as many as 120 calories compared to just 90 calories in a smaller traditional slice of bread which can really add up when you are enjoying a few slices of bread every day.
Plus, if we cut the bread ourselves we tend to cut much bigger slices than if we bough a pre-cut loaf.
4. Regular sausages for extra lean
The average regular sausage comes in anywhere between 140-170 calories in a single sausage.
But an extra lean sausage has less than 100 calories, which will be labelled as such on packaging.
While the leaner sausages do cost a little more, you are basically paying for more meat and less fat.
5. Crackers for wafer thins
There are many different varieties of crackers.
While some of the plain crackers are low in calories, some of the flavoured biscuits and rice crackers in multi-packs can contain more carbohydrates than two slices of bread, or as much fat as potato chips.
Much better options are the thin wafers that contains half as many calories and carbohydrates as some crackers and no fat.
6. Crunchy muesli bars for wholegrain bars
Any snack bar described as natural and with oats seems healthy enough but some of the larger muesli slices and baked bars can contain more than 200 calories.
On the other hand there are plenty of wholegrain snack bars available which contain half the number of calories while remaining a nutrient rich snack.
7. Pesto dip for vegetable dip
When it comes to calorie overloads, we often forget that the combination of a dip and high fat crackers can give you more calories than an entire meal after just a few scoops.
That is definitely the case when it comes to pesto dips.
A single 20g serve of pesto dip equates to more than 100 calories per serve, while a plain vegetable dip can give you as little as 20 calories per serve.
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8. Greek style fruit yoghurt for Greek fruit yoghurt
There is a significant difference when it comes to Greek yoghurt versus Greek style yoghurt.
In general Greek style will have a lot more sugar added and be much lower in protein than Greek yoghurt, and have a higher calorie content.
For example, a single tub of Greek style yoghurt can contain more than 20g of fat and 200 calories in a single tub, while a Greek yoghurt can contain as little as 100 calories per serve and little to no fat.
Susie Burrell is a nutritionist. Follow her on Twitter: @SusieBDiet
This story originally appeared on news.com.au and has been republished with permission.
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