What does 200 calories look like?

There’s a pretty cool post over on Wise Geek of photos of 200 Calories’ worth of different foods, arranged in order by weight from least Calorie dense (you need a lot of it to get to 200 Calories) to most Calorie dense (just a little goes a long way).

It’s pretty interesting to see the range of quantities, and there are some counter intuitive examples–for instance, Coca Cola is up with the low density vegetables like celery and broccoli, which is confusing until you remember that, laden as it is with sugar, Coca Cola is still mostly water, which is completely devoid of Calories.

570 g of carrots…
…or 38 g of Cheetos?








186 g of canned black beans…
…or 54 g of jelly beans?








34 g of peanut butter…
…definitely won’t be enough for your 1425 g of celery!



The post explains why they chose 200 Calories (it kept comparisons from getting too extreme) and why they chose the foods they did (they were convenient). It also rightly points out that, as the Coca Cola example shows, fewer Calories per unit of measurement doesn’t necessarily mean something is healthier–this says nothing about the nutritional content of these different foods. Just some interesting food for thought.

Anne S

Anne Sauer is an atheist with an appetite for science, good food, and making connections between the two. She is currently pursuing her MBA in Sustainable Management at Presidio Graduate School in San Francisco. Her favorite foods are salted caramel ice cream and chicken tikka masala. You can find her on twitter @aynsavoy.

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  1. Not to mention that Calories are a measure of energy. 200 Calories just about equals the amount of energy needed to walk 2 miles.

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