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DIET DETECTIVE

Nutrition advice: What it will cost you to burn off those Super Bowl food calories

Monday, January 28, 2013 - 12:01 am

The Super Bowl is second only to Thanksgiving for eating calorie-laden foods. To give you some perspective, what follows are a few of your favorite Big Game foods and what it costs to burn them off.

Handful of pita chips with artichoke dip = running 141 football fields

Yes, 141 football fields; each one is 100 yards, and you would have to run at an average speed of 5 mph (the average walking pace is about 3 mph). Each chip is 13 calories, plus just 1 tablespoon of dip is 80 calories. That's a total of about 93 calories for each chip.

Diet tip: Make your own 100 percent whole-wheat pita chips, and use salsa instead of the artichoke dip.

Four Domino's stuffed cheesy bacon and jalapeno breadsticks = 193 touchdown dances in the end zone

While the stuffed cheese bread is probably very tasty, it's also a calorie killer at 160 calories per piece, or 640 calories for four.

Diet tip: Toast100 percent whole-wheat pita bread with butter spray and Parmesan cheese. Of course, it won't be the same, but it's low in calories and will taste great.

Two slices of Domino's bacon cheeseburger feast hand-tossed pizza (16 inches) = 209 minutes performing in a marching band

Pizza and a cheeseburger — what will they think of next? Each slice is 490 calories, but it is hand-tossed.

Diet tip: Try thin-crust pizza, and if you really want to be super healthy, how about getting pizza without the cheese — just add your own Parmesan.

•Half of a White Castle “Crave Case” with cheese = face painting 111 wild fans

These are sliders with cheese. Each slider is 170 calories, and there are 30 in a case. That's 2,550 calories for 15, but they're not very large.

Diet tip: How about having just one or two? If that's not possible, your best bet is not to go to White Castle. You could also make your own burgers — white meat turkey if you really want to be super healthy, or, at the very least, very lean ground meat.

•Three Sierra Nevada Bigfoot beers = 211 minutes of coaching football

You ever see those coaches? They're constantly running around, not to mention the stress. There are some high-calorie beers out there, and this is one of the highest.

Diet tip: Unless you love Sierra Nevada, your best bet is a regular beer or, even better, one of those micro-light beers. Sample a few light beers before the game to see which ones you prefer.

•One Sloppy Joe = 59 minutes of climbing the stadium stairs

Have you ever used a stair climber? It's not easy. Try doing it for an hour for just one Sloppy Joe. This is a Tex-Mex creation that includes fatty ground beef, sugar and ketchup and has more than 500 calories.

Diet tip: Use lean ground beef, and try a low-calorie sauce (without sugar). It will still taste great. Also add veggies (onions, peppers, broccoli all chopped up) to the meat to lower overall calories and increase health benefits.

•Six traditional hand-spun “Buffalo Wild Wings” dipped in ranch dressing = doing "the wave" 6,480 times

Stand up, wave your hand and be counted 6,480 times. Six wings from Buffalo Wild Wings have 990 calories. The dressing (two servings) has 340 calories. That's 1,330 calories.

Diet tip: Make your own. Go skinless and bake instead of deep frying them.

Two handfuls of Cheetos Jumbo Puffs = 30 minutes of playing professional football

The only problem is that, according to The Wall Street Journal, there are only about 11 minutes of actual ball playing in a football game. That means you need to play almost three games of professional football to burn off two handfuls of Cheetos. Keep in mind, that's 320 calories for about 2 ounces — yes, only 2 ounces.

Diet tip: How about making popcorn sprinkled with Parmesan cheese and sprayed with butter spray? Of course, it's not the same, but it might satisfy that salty cheese urge.

•Outback baby back ribs, full order = 123 minutes of team practice and conditioning

Ribs are tasty, but they're packed with calories — as if you didn't know. They're fatty, and the sauce is sugary.

Diet tip: Try making them yourself. Trim all visible fat before and after cooking, and instead of coating your ribs with an excessive amount of sauce beforehand, partially cook them loaded with seasonings, brush them lightly with the sauce, and then finish cooking.

•Four bacon-wrapped smokies = 156 minutes being the team mascot

Popping just four of these little sausages wrapped in bacon into your mouth will cost you 156 minutes of jumping around and acting a bit foolish (the good news is you'll be wearing a costume).

Diet tip: If you need to eat some type of bacon-wrapped hors d'oeuvres, go with Applegate Farms Organic Hickory Smoked Uncured Turkey Bacon. It's only 35 calories per slice. Hebrew National Beef Franks in a Blanket are 60 calories each.

•Three Pepsis = 57 minutes of dancing during the halftime show

Each 12-ounce can is 100 calories. So to burn off just three Pepsis, you need to dance for more than an hour. Have you danced for an hour straight?

Diet tip: Water, flavored seltzer, unsweetened ice tea … there are so many low- or no-calorie drinks. Find one that works for you.

Charles Stuart Platkin is a nutrition and public health advocate and founder of www.DietDetective.com.