Note: In the tweet and FB message I sent out about this post I incorrectly stated that a tomato and fennel recipe would be included. Chalk that up to my brain getting ahead of my blogging… or to getting up super early this AM. 😦 Sorry for any confusion.
Volume…what? Volumetrics is an eating plan/style pioneered by Barbara Rolls, Ph.D. It’s not a diet, although many dietitians and diet plans incorporate the principles because they just make sense. Here in the Parker Haus, we lost a collective 55 lbs on Jenny Craig, which uses Volumetrics principles to increase satiety with fewer calories.
Even before we started the Jenny Craig plan both Matt and I researched Volumetrics . We really identified with the concepts found them easy to incorporate into our diet. As we are coming off of our diet and moving into a maintenance mode these concepts are becoming important as we start cooking more again.
The primary concept of Volumetrics is energy density. Energy density = calories ÷ grams. This information is easily found on any nutrition label. For example salsa has approximately 15 calories for every 33 grams (2 tbsp).
15 calories ÷ 33 grams = .45 energy density
Once you know the Energy Density you can apply some loose rules:
- If the Energy density is less than 1 eat as much as you want until satisfied
- If the Energy density is between 1 and 2 use portion control
- If the Energy density is greater than 2 limit your portions
Looking at these principles I see that I can eat as much salsa as I want- score! As a side note, anyone have a low-calorie way to deliver the salsa to my mouth? It’s the tortilla chips that add all the calories *sigh*.
Some basic tips we’ve learned from the Volumetrics approach:
- If using non-stick cookware you can drastically reduce the amount of oil used in cooking
- You will use less oil if you use an oil mister.
- Cut fat by using broth or cooking wine to sauté mushrooms, onions and other vegetables.
- Whenever possible add vegetables to dishes. Try chopping green peppers and adding to meatloaf or hamburgers.
- Swap in brown rice for white rice to increase fiber
- Whenever possible, fill at least half your plate with vegetables
- Have a salad or non-creamy soup before your dinner to increase satiety on a low-calorie diet.
Have you heard of volumetrics? Seriously does anyone have a low-calorie salsa delivery mechanism? I am half tempted to eat salsa with spoon.