What Exactly Does 200 Calories Look Like?

Nutrition // Lisa Donaldson

All food contains energy, whether it be a green bean or a gooey caramel. This isn’t a bad thing, in fact we need energy to live, breathe and move! What’s important to note is that some foods contain more ‘bang for buck’ and you can eat a whole lot more if you are smart with your choices.

When we consume excess energy (more than we require) we start to gain weight. So to find that happy medium, we need to understand that some foods contain a load of energy with little nutrition (e.g. lollies) – and other foods contain a load of nutrition and little energy (e.g. spinach).

It all comes down to portions and mindfulness: really understanding what your body requires and WANTS.

If all you want is chocolate (and despite eating a bag of carrots you’ll eat the chocolate anyway) then perhaps a little of what you REALLY want is better than inhaling a lot of what you don’t want.

Let’s take a look at a range of different foods and how much you can eat for 200 calories.

200 Calories Infographic



Now, I don’t know anyone who would love eating six cups of carrots, but it goes to show that it’s a lot of food for 200cal. Equally as generous is 4 cups of strawberries.

Rather than feasting on chocolate and cheese alone (and eating a lot of energy), you could perhaps have a little of those ‘high energy’ delights and marry them up with more generous serve of of a lower energy food. A few chocolate dipped strawberries, or some roasted beans with a dusting of parmesan, perhaps? Yum!

For more awesome recipes that help you control your calorie intake – without compromising on taste – sign up to 12WBT!

Here’s a sneak peek at one of our most popular recipes on the program,  12WBT Cheesy BBQ Popcorn:

12WBT Cheesy Barbecue Popcorn

Cheesy_Barbeque_Popcorn_LR551331a645cbe86cc2fb092c570daffa8 Serves

10 minute prep time

5 minute cooking time

69 calories/serve


85g Air Popped Popcorn
1 Teaspoons Ground Paprika (2g)
1/2 Teaspoons Dried Oregano (1g)
  • 1/2 Teaspoons Dried Thyme (1g)
1 Tablespoons Margarine (20g), melted
25g Grated Parmesan


1. Cook the popcorn following packet directions.
2. Meanwhile, combine the spices in an extra large bowl.
3. Add the hot popcorn and margarine to the spice mix in the bowl. Toss until well coated and combined.
4. Spread onto a large baking tray lined with non-stick baking paper. Scatter over the cheese. Bake in a preheated 180C oven for 2-3 minutes or until the cheese is just melted. Serve immediately.

Mish Tips

  • This is best made just prior to serving so it stays crisp and fresh. Prepare ahead by have everything measured out and ready to go. For a smokey flavour swap the mild paprika for the smoked version.
  • To ensure portion sizing, divide between coloured serving cups – the kids will love their cup-a-popcorn!
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