The Science of BACON!
Bacon Nutrition Facts
Bacon is sometimes called meat candy. It's packed with flavor from pork, salt, smoke and, sometimes, sugar or other sweeteners. So does bacon have carbs? And what about calories in turkey bacon? And can you eat bacon on a low carb diet? While it's not always the healthiest meat choice, there are ways to include bacon in your eating plan.
Calories in Turkey Bacon and Pork BaconTurkey Bacon Nutrition FactsServing Size 2 slicesPer Serving% Daily Value*
|Calories from Fat 54|
|Saturated Fat 2g||10%|
|Dietary Fiber 0g||0%|
|Vitamin A 0% · Vitamin C 12%|
|Calcium 0% · Iron 0%|
|*Based on a 2,000 calorie diet|
Traditional (pork) bacon is usually higher in fat and calories than turkey bacon, but not as much as you might imagine. Asingle serving of baconprovides 90 calories, 7 grams of fat, 2.5 grams of saturated fat and zero grams of carbohydrate. Calorie and fat counts, however, will vary from brand to brand because the thickness of each slice will vary from manufacturer to manufacturer.
There are usually fewer calories in turkey bacon, although the difference is not as significant as you might expect. There are only70 calories in 2 slices of turkey baconbut sometimes the slices are very thin. When you are choosing between different types of bacon, try to compare similar serving sizes of each product. Often pork bacon slices are more thick and meaty.
Many dieters consume bacon as part of a low carb or ketogenic eating plan. Since bacon is high in fat and low in carbohydrate, the food works well in those plans.
Here is a quick list of the carb counts of different bacon products. The good news is that basic bacon, turkey bacon, real bacon bits, and Canadian bacon have no measurable carbs per serving.
- bacon: 0
- bacon, low sodium: 0
- bacon, brown sugar: 1 gram
- bacon, turkey: 0
- bacon, Canadian: 0
- bacon, Canadian (Boar's Head, 2 oz.): 1
- bacon, Irish: (2 slices) 1
- bacon, vegetarian (Morningstar Farms, 2 slices): 2
- bacon bits, imitation: (1 1/2 tbsp.) 2
- bacon bits, real: 0
Find Hidden Carbs
As you can see from the list, you might be buying a bacon product that has carbs and not realize it if you think that all bacon is low-carb. Some bacon has sugar or other sweet carbs added to give it that maple/sugar glazed taste. Vegetarian bacon may have carbs because it is made from carb-containing ingredients.
For example, McCormick Bac'n Pieces Bacon Flavored Bits and Durkee Imitation Bacon Bits are made from textured soy flour, which contains carbohydrate. One tablespoon has two grams of carbohydrate.
Vegetarian bacon strips likewise are often made with textured soy protein, so they contain carbohydrates. Two strips of MorningStar Farms Veggie Bacon Strips has two grams of carbohydrate.
In the case of these products, the carbs aren't coming from sugar. But for meat-based bacon products, sugar may be added as glazing or injected into the product before slicing to give it a sweet flavor. Check the label of any bacon product for carbohydrate content. Avoid any bacon that says it is glazed or touts its sweetness.
When you are dining out and you see sugar-glazed bacon listed as the side, you can bet that it contains carbs from the sugar.
Maple-glazed bacon probably uses the carbohydrate-packed syrup to coat the bacon, so you will need to keep that in mind as well.
Can You Include Bacon In Your Diet?
Are you on a low carb diet? If you successfully use bacon that contains no carbs, you need to look at what else you are eating that might have carbohydrate. A typical American breakfast is a carb-fest. Toast, hash browns, oatmeal, yogurt, granola, pancakes, waffles, pastries, orange juice, milk, sweetened coffee drinks, muffins, scones, bagels and the bun of your breakfast sandwich all have high carbohydrate content.
Meanwhile, the bacon on your bacon cheeseburger may not be contributing carbs, but you'll be getting plenty from the bun and the cheese, not to mention the French fries which are basically deep-fried carb sticks.
Go ahead and sprinkle some real bacon bits on your salad, but watch out for the carbs in the salad dressing. Fruits and some vegetables on your salad will also have carbohydrates, as well as the croutons. You'll need to educate yourself on all of the ingredients to choose wisely if you are trying to reduce or avoid carbs.
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