So, Do you weigh your food before or after you cook it?

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Itzjstjeff

Joined: Apr 12
Posts: 102

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Posted: 04 Aug 2013, 00:31
Lets say, bread vs. toast?
Raw steak vs. cooked?
Raw chicken vs. cooked?



If your not hungry enough to eat an apple, then your really not that hungry!
Started diet 5/2/13 at 230lbs
eKatherine

Joined: Aug 12
Posts: 1,266

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Posted: 04 Aug 2013, 10:24
It depends.

For the most part, food has the same calories whether it is cooked or raw. So bread itself will be the same whether right out of the package or toasted.

Meat with a lot of fat sometimes loses some of its fat when cooking. So raw bacon has the same calories as bacon cooked in soup that you intend to drink, but some calories are lost when you fry it.

Meat loses water when it is cooked. So though a large chicken breast has about the same calories whether cooked or raw, it weighs less. So if you slice it and eat part, it makes a difference.
Itzjstjeff

Joined: Apr 12
Posts: 102

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Posted: 04 Aug 2013, 11:45
ok, as in your bread example: The raw bread weighs more because of the extra water in the slice. When you toast the water out, the bread weighs considerably less which would be a more accurate calorie count then it would be with the extra water weight right? (even though both have the same calories all along) In other words my sour dough slice raw is 49g, my toasted weighs 29g, enter both into fat secret according to weight and you get two different calorie counts. I'm thinking cooked is the better because your not counting the water as calories, what ya think?



If your not hungry enough to eat an apple, then your really not that hungry!
Started diet 5/2/13 at 230lbs
chubby5221

Joined: Aug 13
Posts: 2

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Posted: 04 Aug 2013, 13:47
I always weigh it before.
eKatherine

Joined: Aug 12
Posts: 1,266

      quote  
Posted: 04 Aug 2013, 13:54
Itzjstjeff wrote:
ok, as in your bread example: The raw bread weighs more because of the extra water in the slice. When you toast the water out, the bread weighs considerably less which would be a more accurate calorie count then it would be with the extra water weight right? (even though both have the same calories all along) In other words my sour dough slice raw is 49g, my toasted weighs 29g, enter both into fat secret according to weight and you get two different calorie counts. I'm thinking cooked is the better because your not counting the water as calories, what ya think?


If you are making your own recipe, you should calculate the ingredients for the total and divide by the number of servings to get calories per serving. Or divide by the number of ounces to calculate calories per ounce.

In this case you would definitely weigh the bread before toasting. Measuring after toasting and making adjustments based on assumptions can lead to a huge error.

With store-bought bread, just use the calories listed on the label.
Itzjstjeff

Joined: Apr 12
Posts: 102

      quote  
Posted: 05 Aug 2013, 12:12
And the verdict is in for me: Found it in the "Biggest Loser Book titled Simple Swaps" And I "quote": When it comes to cooking, food should be weighed or measured after cooking. For Example, 4 oz of boneless, skinless chicken breast have about 140 calories when raw. When it's cooked it will weigh closer to 3 oz. that's because it loses water during the cooking process, and the calories become more concentrated. The same hold true for vegetables and other cooked foods. Dry cereals or grains, on the other hand, may be only a few tablespoons per serving initially, but once you add water and cook them, their volume may double or triple. "end quote"



If your not hungry enough to eat an apple, then your really not that hungry!
Started diet 5/2/13 at 230lbs
eKatherine

Joined: Aug 12
Posts: 1,266

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Posted: 05 Aug 2013, 12:52
But if you're going to measure it cooked, you need to use the "after cooking" measurement. If you're eating it raw, that won't work at all. And if you're cooking one portion, it doesn't matter, though actually the amount of water that is cooked off or into a food varies depending on how long you cook it.

If you cook your meat hard and dry, you'll be cheating yourself into eating significantly more calories than if you take it off the fire while there's still moisture in it, because you aren't going to have a way to measure that.

Measuring bread on some sort of faith-based wishful thinking about how much moisture there is in it will give you a significant error. In fact, the most accurate way of measuring dry starches like flour and cereal is when it is dry, using a gram scale.

The fact is that there are a lot of variables that can be introduced which can make the apparent calorie count way off.

This is a show that specializes in making people lose weight fast, after which they put all the weight back on and more. They abandon the contestants. It has no special credibility for calorie counting or other aspect of weight control.
umdterpsgirl

Joined: Aug 10
Posts: 233

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Posted: 05 Aug 2013, 15:00
Itzjstjeff, I think you are getting confused. Maybe this will explain it better.

4oz of raw skinless, boneless chicken breast has about 120 calories. When you cook that 4oz of chicken, regardless of what it weighs after it is cooked, it still has about 120 calories. Calories do not evaporate. There probably is a small drop in calories as the fat cooks out, but chicken breast is pretty lean.

Now with foods with a lot of fat, like ground beef or bacon, the fat will cook out of the food during cooking. However the total number of calories in the pan remains the same. For example, 4 oz of 90%/10% ground beef has roughly 200 calories. When you cook the ground beef, some of the fat cooks out of the meat and becomes liquified in the pan. But the fat in the pan and the meat still contain about 200 calories total. Most people then skim that fat off and drain the meat, so in reality you are consuming less than 200 calories. Personally, I always base my calorie counts on the raw amounts that I cook because I'm slightly over estimating that way (I'd rather over-estimate what I'm eating than under-estimate). Also, a lot of the recipes I use that call for fatty meats then use the fat in the pan to cook the rest of the recipe.

With toast, you don't lose any fat, just water (which has no calories) so you should just use the the amount of calories listed on the package for 1 slice of bread. If there is no label (like bread from a bakery), then use the weight of the bread before toasting to get a calorie estimate from fatsecret and input into your food diary.

If it's homemade bread, I suggest using this recipe calculator http://recipes.sparkpeople.com/recipe-calculator.asp to determine number of calories per serving. Just input all the ingredients in the recipe, enter the number of servings, and it will calculate the amount of calories per serving. You can then enter that into the database here on fatsecret and use that same entry every time you have that recipe.

Oh and be sure to include any oils/butter/fats used during cooking as a separate entry in your food diary. So if you used 1 tablespoon of olive oil to cook that chicken, enter that in.
Itzjstjeff

Joined: Apr 12
Posts: 102

      quote  
Posted: 06 Aug 2013, 17:18
Itzjstjeff wrote:
I'm using the weight to determine the calorie content. A calorie is a calorie, raw or cooked. Why include the extra water weight. It's important to note that the website you pointed to: http://recipes.sparkpeople.com/recipe-calculator.asp / When you Type in boneless chicken breast almost all options will refer to the cooked weight (grilled, baked and fried) and none indicate "raw meat" but do not indicate one way or the other..
Or maybe I'm wrong and should be using the weight for the serving size ONLY. Hmmm that could be it.



If your not hungry enough to eat an apple, then your really not that hungry!
Started diet 5/2/13 at 230lbs
umdterpsgirl

Joined: Aug 10
Posts: 233

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Posted: 08 Aug 2013, 08:36
It takes a little getting used to searching on that recipe calculator, but adding the brand helps. So for instance, search for "Giant chicken breast" (and select the radio button for "has all these word"Wink and you will find "Chicken breasts, Giant Eagle Boneless Skinless Fresh". That's the brand of chicken I usually use and the label on the package matches what is in the database (120 calories for 4 oz raw).

Overall though, I think when you record food in your diet calendar, you just need to make sure you are selecting the right type of food to reflect what you are having. So if you weigh the food raw and then cook it, use the calorie count for "raw". If you are weighing the food after it is cooked, use the calorie count for "cooked". I don't like the "cooked" estimates on fatsecret though because many of them account for fat used in the cooking. But how much fat? What if I used more fat/oil/butter etc. than the assumption? So I put in each individual ingredient or use a recipe calculator for complicated meals.
Itzjstjeff

Joined: Apr 12
Posts: 102

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Posted: 09 Aug 2013, 11:59
umdterpsgirl, I tried to key in "Chicken breasts, Giant Eagle Boneless Skinless Fresh on http://recipes.sparkpeople.com/recipe-calculator.asp and I'm sorry but it always comes up cooked, baked, broiled or fried. Nowhere have I seen a serving of "raw" chicken or even the reference to "raw chicken" weight.



If your not hungry enough to eat an apple, then your really not that hungry!
Started diet 5/2/13 at 230lbs
QuilterInVA

Joined: Jul 13
Posts: 56

      quote  
Posted: 10 Aug 2013, 09:03
Bread is bread. Toast has the same calories as the bread. If you eat meat raw, than weigh it raw. I weigh mine after cooking unless it is in a recipe.
Itzjstjeff

Joined: Apr 12
Posts: 102

      quote  
Posted: 10 Aug 2013, 11:00
Thank You QuilterinVA. That makes total sense. If you eat meat raw then weigh it raw! You answered my question. And I suppose that would pertain to just about everything. After all who has ever heard of a "serving" of raw chicken! Weigh it as you would eat it!



If your not hungry enough to eat an apple, then your really not that hungry!
Started diet 5/2/13 at 230lbs
Itzjstjeff

Joined: Apr 12
Posts: 102

      quote  
Posted: 11 Aug 2013, 20:26
This case is closed! Thanks to everyone who participated, I feel we got to the bottom of a question that can be confusing as well as misleading.



If your not hungry enough to eat an apple, then your really not that hungry!
Started diet 5/2/13 at 230lbs



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