Food Comparisons: Which Option Is More Nutritious and Beneficial?

Man is preparing a big salad

Plain yogurt or Greek yogurt, spinach or kale – which one provides you with more valuable nutrients or is lower in calories? Read these food comparisons to find out which foods are the better choice.

For smoothies: spinach or kale?

Your breakfast smoothie should ideally not only consist of fruit but vegetables as well. Green leafy vegetables (leaf spinach or kale) are especially good choices: they are relatively tasteless, but they contain valuable nutrients. Kale provides 105 mg of vitamin C per 100 g, which is twice as much as that provided by fresh leaf spinach. Plus, the cabbage variety contains vitamins A and K, which are important for a strong immune system. The leafy vegetable also has more calcium than spinach.

For snacks: nuts or fruit?

What is the right choice for those little hunger pangs between meals? The truth is both: a combination of nuts and fruit is the ideal snack before working out or before going to bed. A banana with peanut butter or an apple with a handful of almonds provides you with carbohydrates, protein and high-quality fats — thus, all three macronutrients.

For baking: applesauce or sugar?

You don’t always have to use sugar when you bake: unsweetened applesauce can often substitute for sugar. You may have to play around with the amount because the applesauce makes the dough softer and it’s not as sweet as sugar. But let’s be honest: for most recipes, you can simply reduce the amount of sugar, and it still tastes good.

Good to know

Applesauce can also be used as a substitute for eggs in vegan recipes.

After a workout: plain yogurt or Greek yogurt?

If you compare the macronutrient ratio of the two yogurts, it is quite clear that Greek yogurt has more protein. This is especially important for fitness enthusiasts interested in building muscle: one serving of Greek yogurt (200 g) provides about 15 g of the macronutrient, whereas one serving (200 g) of plain yogurt only has half the protein.

Eine Schüssel Joghurt mit zwei Löffel

For a sandwich: wheat bread or whole grain bread?

Wheat bread is the healthy alternative to white bread right? Not so fast. Wheat bread only tells you the type of flour that’s used, not about the quality of the grain. Without the word “whole,” your bread has been stripped of most of its nutrients. Read the ingredient list carefully to make sure whole grain flour (wheat, rye, spelt, etc.) is being used. To be extra sure there aren’t any surprises, like hidden sugar, try baking your own!

For a side dish: rice or potatoes?

Rice is a popular side dish. If you want to save calories, there are lower calorie alternatives for filling you up. 100 g of uncooked white rice has around 350 calories and 74 g of carbohydrates. 100 g of (sweet) potatoes, on the other hand, only has 80 calories.

Quinoa or millet have about the same number of calories as rice but many more nutrients. Plus, quinoa is high in protein.

For the immune system: oranges or bell peppers?

A strong immune system is very important during the cold time of the year, especially when all your coworkers are sick. Naturally, you want to stay healthy. A good dose of vitamin C can go a long way toward keeping you that way. Did you know that bell peppers have three times as much vitamin C as oranges? This makes bell peppers a real immune system booster. Add the vegetable to your salad or eat it as a snack with hummus dip.


Julia Denner Julia is a dietician and sports nutritionist. Before she began her position as Communications Specialist at Runtastic, she spent several years working as a dietician in the surgical department at Vienna General Hospital. Julia is passionate about inspiring others to eat a healthy, balanced diet. View all posts by Julia Denner