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TRIVIA: How Many Calories Does The Average American Get Daily?

By — One of many Weight Loss blogs on

ANSWER: While the recommend caloric intake is 2,000 calories daily for the average, active adult, the average American actually consumes between 2,700 – 3,500! That's between about 50 to 100% more!

And, as you may have guessed, the majority of these calories are NOT coming from whole food such as fruits, veggies or whole grains. Rather, a large percentage is derived from empty calories such as soda, sweets and junk-food.

This is unfortunate news as 3,500 extra calories is all it takes to gain a pound around your hips.

If you were to consume an extra 500 calories each day, you would quickly gain one extra pound each week or over 50 pounds within the year!

But Surely, *I* Don't Eat Like That.... Do I?

This may sound like a large amount of calories, and yet if you were to order the 3-piece Crispy Strips and Baked Beans from KFC,  a single slice of New York Style cheesecake or a Big Gulp soda, that's 500 calories right there!

And those aren't the worst offenders - not by far.

In fact, the North Atlantic Cod Filet meal (3 pieces) at Culver’s provides over 2,000 calories with 140 grams of fat and more than 2,300 mg of sodium. That’s more sodium than you need for an entire day in one meal! Chili’s Jalapeno Smokehouse Bacon Burger with Ranch is an even worse offender with 2,210 calories, 144 g fat, and 6,600 mg sodium – triple the amount of sodium you need in one meal!

And This Dietitian's Beloved Starbucks?

Although I am a big fan of Starbucks, this chain can easily sneak up to 1,000 calories in a single beverage. This Starbucks Venti Whole Milk Salted Caramel Signature Hot Chocolate contains 600 calories, 24 g fat, 80g sugars, and 360 mg sodium.

I would much rather trade the calories for a well-balanced MEAL. As tasty as it might be, food would certainly be more satisfying than this hot bevvy.

Curious how many calories are found in YOUR favorite restaurant meal or packaged goodie?

Visit for the most accurate and complete nutrition database. 

To learn more about how many calories you need in a day, visit or find a registered dietitian at for a more exact measurement.

Photo Credit: m.ariii, socceraholic, Word Ridden

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