Hi! I was wondering if anyone out there had some advice for me. I'm living in norway for the summer. Unfortunately, since i arrived i've been having problems with carb counting, mostly because the labels are different from what i am used to. When i can find nutrition info (which doesn't seem to be on every package), it's listed per 100 grams instead of by serving size. i know i could just divide out by how many grams are in the package, but the packages i have don't have the total number of grams listed on them. again, i can solve this when the stuff i have shipped gets here - i have a food scale packed there - but that's about 2 weeks off and for now i'm just kinda guessing. Does anyone have any tips/tricks for carb counting in europe? obviously most thing are the same, but what about for packaged items? (the ones i'm having the most problems with are bread and peanut butter..) thanks for any help!
I think you'll find size of the package somewhere- I did when I was in Europe a few years ago. Otherwise, you can estimate about 15 carbs per slice of normal bread (low carb bread or specialty breads are a different story) and count 2 (net) carbs per tablespoon of plain peanut butter or 5 carbs per tablespoon of processed, sweetened, peanut butter.
thanks, that actually really helps. i could only find one type of PB in all the stores around here, and the ingredient list contains "sukkar" So i wasn't sure about that.
urg..... really getting frustrated with this. tonight we made an easy old el paso fajita dinner kit... all the nutrition info was again per hundred grams, so after a lot of calculating, we came up with 49 grams of carb per serving of two tortillas. when i looked this up on some reputable web sites (calorieking and caloriecount), it says the total carb is 33 for 2 tortillas. moreover, to figure out what the carb per serving was, i had to multiply the following: 51.1 grams carb per 100 gr * 326 grams total wt of the tortillas in the package + 9 grams carb/100 gr *144 grams total wt of the salsa in the package + 56 grams carb/100 gr * 35 gram total wt of the seasoning mix then take that and divide it by 4 to find the amount for 2 tortillas. REALLY??? really? is there no easier way to do this? is this what people with type 1 here regularly do? being that i'm not that great with math and i could easily mess my dose of insulin up, that kinda scares me. i guess i'm to used to easy convenience...
This is may not be the magic bullet you are looking for, but you can save yourself a little bit of work by using carb factors. Basically you take the carb count for the 100 g weight and make it a decimal and use that to figure the total carbs. This saves you the dividing by 100g part of your original example and also means that you only weigh the food you're going to eat, and you only weigh it once. For example, if your tortillas are 51.1 carbs per 100 grams that means that your tortillas are made up of 51.1 percent carbs. You can write this as .511 (because 51.1 / 100 = .511 and because .511 and 51.1% are the number expressed in different forms). To figure the carbs take .511 x the gram weight of the tortillas you are eating. This equals the number of carbs. So if you eat the whole package (326 grams) this is 166.6 carbs. If you eat only 150 grams then you figure .511 x 150 grams is 76.6 carbs. If you like to estimate, here is an even easier approach. .511 is roughly 50%. So now every time you have tortillas, just divide the total weight of them in half (because 1/2 is the same as 50%). That is your carb count. If you eat 50 grams, it is 25 carbs. 100 grams is 50 carbs. It is that easy. And it works for most plain bread type items including plain toast, unfrosted cookies and plain cake or doughnuts because all these foods are roughly 50% carbohydrate. For the salsa, you'll have a carb factor of .09. (That's 9/100) so all you have to do is multiply the weight by .09 and that's your carb count (ie .09 X 144 = 12.96 carbs). Like before, you can estimate this as well. .09 is about 10% so you can just divide by 1/10. Your 144 grams of salsa figures out to 14.4 carbs. You lose a little exactness by estimating, but 1 carb (14 vs 13) isn't much of a sacifice. If this appeals to you at all, take a peek and the Carb Perfectionist link in my sig. All the info you need to use your scale effectively is there.
You've gotten good advice already. Just wanted to add that many items do have next to the nutritional info per 100gs another box with the nutritional info per serving. Just be on the look out for that when you go shopping. It is frustrating all the calculating, I find. Good luck.