New York City in the Springtime is wonderful. I just recently visited NYC for the first time this month and what a beautiful and energetic city. I used to live in Los Angenles, so I am used to large cities, but NYC is defineltly one of a kind. There are is so much to see, so many people, so much hustle and bustle and SO many restaurants! While I was there I, of course, went to a little pizza joint in Little Italy and ate the BEST pizza ever. You know, the kind where the slices are as big as a dinner plate and you fold them over while you eat them? It tasted fabulous and the crust was magnificent. I do have to say, that since it was my first time in NYC and my first time indulging in world renound NYC pizza, I had some hesitation about something. I wasn’t really sure how I felt about the calories of the pizza I was eating being posted on the menu. Now, don’t get me wrong…I am a registered dietitan and I count calories all day long and I help my clients in my weight loss program to count them as well. BUT….this was a special occasion and I wasn’t even sure I was ever going to be back in NYC. Did I really need to know the calories on this piece of pizza since it was such a special occasion?

Well, my answer is yes, I do need to count each and every calorie if I want to continue to keep my weight in check. BUT, my pizza/calories on the menu experience brought some questions to my mind that I thought I would ask you. Here are the questions…would you perfer to look up the calories of the foods you are eating or do you like to see calories on the menus? If you do like them on the menu, would it urge you to choose a different menu item that would better fit into your daily calorie goal? Whatever your answer, I am not really sure if I like it or not and I would like to hear your opinion because I can see two sides to the issue. Maybe you can help me decide.

On one hand, in my opinion, it would be nice to have calories posted on the menu of each food/beverage item. Seeing the calories of the foods I am about to consume may help me to decide that my initial choice of food/beverage would not be beneficial in my calorie goal for the day. The calorie content would guide me into choosing foods that are lower in calorie and would better fit into my calorie budget for the day. Thats a good thing.

On the other hand, if it is a special occsasion, such as my once in a lifetime Little Italy Pizza excursion, I don’t want to see the calories on the menu of the food I am about to indulge in. If I saw how many calories the pizza slice had, remember it was the size of dinner plate, I would have probably eaten it anyway because of such a special occasion and I would have felt guilty all day. I don’t want to feel guilty all day during such a wonderful experience. In circumstances such as these, I would rather blindly eat in sheer bliss and flavorful magic without feeling guitly about all the calories and fat grams I just consumed. That would be a bad thing.

Do you understand my conflict? Should I think logically and be happy that the calories are posted on the menu and I can make adjustments in my daily intake as needed. Or should I follow my heart, my emotional side, and decide that if I am going to indulge in a food, I would rather just eat it and enjoy every unknown calorie of it? What do you think?

I guess it all goes back to moderation. You can eat what you want, just not as much as you want. But, if you are going to eat something, do you want to look up the calories yourself or do you want them posted on your menu, no matter what the occasion?