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Are you eating extra syns by mistake?

#1
I thought I would do a post because I have seen a few errors being made in various places online when calculating syns for foods.

When using the syns calculator for items with a free food allowance or the 20 calories = 1 syn rule of thumb for items with no free food allowance watch your weights.

The nutritional Information given is not always for the whole thing sometimes it is just given for a certain portion or weight.

For instance say an item gives nutritional info for 90g and the syns are 4.5 syns, but the whole box weighs 180g then the total syns for that box is 9 syns.

I have seen many mistakes being made where someone has say had the whole thing and counted it by the nutritional info only for a percentage of the whole thing. When in the example given above would be an extra 4.5 syns they have not counted.

Of course it could even be a whole load more extra syns and all those little mistakes could soon put you hugely over your syn allowance.

So this post is just a little reminder really. I would hate to see anyone making this mistake when trying to give 100% to the plan.

Hope that all makes sense. (am typing this on iPhone, and it is hard work doing long posts)
 
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#2
I think one of the easiest ways to forget how many syns you're having is not to count things honestly. I keep seeing people adding things like '1 teaspoon of marg' for 2 slices of toast, and I think we all know that 1 teaspoon really won't go far. So if it's actually a heaped teaspoon, then the syns would be at least double - Not drastic, but it's all those little bits during the day which add up.

I've also noticed that syn values on some of the food diaries seem to be under-estimated and not matching the syn values for the same portions on the syns calculator.

Not counting syns correctly doesn't mean you haven't had the syns!

I'm guilty of this though, as it's only now when I'm counting everything that I realise in the past i've been ignoring heaped spoons and under-estimating the syns without checking properly!
 
#3
Great post :)
I read a post on here last week where someone had weighed their chinese take away and it was twice the "average portion" SW quoted the syn value for. That was a syn eye opener for me!
 
#4
I know it can so easily be done too, which is why I thought a thread was a good idea. Someone could easily think they are being 100% and make the mistake as I pointed out above and end up consuming a whole load of extra syns totally unaware.

Always always check the weight of the product you are having it if has syns in it, because the nutritional information give is not always for the whole thing. It is usually only a percentage of the package.

another example is microwave rice pouches, the nutritional information is usually for a 1/3 of a package or 1/2 a package. But I have seen many people having a whole packet and only counting it as the syns for a 1/3 of the packet, totally by error of calculation.

Of course if a food is completely free then it doesnt matter. Although saying that even free foods should only be consumed until satisfied, being sure to include your 1/3 superfree where possible.
 
#5
Also for things like bought soup, even if it is a fresh soup with all fresh ingredients, you cannot use a free food allowance in it, so the syn value is high.
 
#6
Also for things like bought soup, even if it is a fresh soup with all fresh ingredients, you cannot use a free food allowance in it, so the syn value is high.
yep that is another good example. See how easy in can be to consume extra syns totally unaware if you are making these little errors.

The below are all items which do not have any free food allowance (that means you can not select a free food on the syns calculator when working out the syns for any of the below):

Alcoholic drinks
Biscuits, including cereal bars and savoury crackers
Bread & crispbreads
Breakfast cereals
Cakes & bakery items, e.g. carrot cake
Crisps & snacks
Dressings & dips, e.g. salsa, salad dressing
Fruit - canned, dried and stewed
Pastry products (sweet & savoury), e.g. salmon en croute, apple pie
Pizza
Puddings & desserts
Sandwich/deli fillers
Sandwiches and wraps
Sauces, e.g. jars of tomato-based pasta sauce
Soft drinks, including yogurt drinks fruit/vegetable juice and fruit smoothies
Soups, all varieties
Sweets & chocolates

So even if a sandwich has tuna in it, you can't count the tuna as a free food. Hence why ready made sandwiches are so high in syns.

The same for a jar of pasta sauce. You can't count the tomatoes as a free food (I actually made this mistake in my very early days of slimming world)
 

*honey

Silver Member
#7
not that i use pre made foods eg shop sandwiches or tomato sauce, but why can Tuna not be counted as free on a RED/EE day when in a shop bought sandwich - i know its probably got mayo on it too making syns, but Tuna is Tuna, how is that different to making your own Tuna sandwich???? just confused by the 'SW powers that be' reasoning for this example???
 

-Laura-

Silver Member
#9
I'm going to ask a question here because hopefully someone will be able to tell me..

If you're using the syn calculator, and your meal has more than one free food - for example, chicken and bacon on a red day - how would you input that into the syns calculator? As it only lets you input one food (as far as I'm aware?)

I don't tend to use the syns calculator much as it does baffle me a bit (for example, if you enter a free food, how does it know how large a percentage of the meal is made up by that free food..?), but this is something that has often puzzled me.
 
#10
I will definitely be keeping an eye on weights of things from now on. I too thought that 1 teaspoon of marge would be no where near enough for two slices of bread so If I have toast I select 4 level teaspoons just to be on the safe side.
 
#11
I'm going to ask a question here because hopefully someone will be able to tell me..

If you're using the syn calculator, and your meal has more than one free food - for example, chicken and bacon on a red day - how would you input that into the syns calculator? As it only lets you input one food (as far as I'm aware?)

I don't tend to use the syns calculator much as it does baffle me a bit (for example, if you enter a free food, how does it know how large a percentage of the meal is made up by that free food..?), but this is something that has often puzzled me.

If you look at the ingredients listed on the packet, the first ingredient listed will be the ingredient that is higher in percentage, so you choose that one.

You can select two free foods when using the syn calculator for extra easy (not sure if it makes any difference), but really should only be selecting 2 free foods if the top two ingredients are Chicken and Bacon say.

If it listed chicken first, then various other ingredients before the bacon, the bacon is probably so minimal in amount that it wouldnt count.

Hope that makes sense.
 
#12
not that i use pre made foods eg shop sandwiches or tomato sauce, but why can Tuna not be counted as free on a RED/EE day when in a shop bought sandwich - i know its probably got mayo on it too making syns, but Tuna is Tuna, how is that different to making your own Tuna sandwich???? just confused by the 'SW powers that be' reasoning for this example???
I think it is because as a sandwich filler, SW cannot guarentee what other types of additives etc have been added to keep it fresh, so to make it safer, they state it can't be counted as a free food in a sandwich.

If you was making it yourself, then you wouldnt be adding anything additional to keep it fresh.
 
#14
Strangely enough I'm sat having this conversation with my OH as I've been eating low fat natural yoghurt as free but it's only the 0% fat ones that are free. I've been eating creme freche as free too and just found that there's not a free type of creme freche.

That might explain as to why I haven't seen regular losses.
 
#15
great thread!

can i check something, i checked the syns for some coucous...it came up as 6 syns dried, 100g cooked - so i measure 100g when its cooked, its quite easy to think that measurement is dried then it expands and more syns are added....or maybe its just me lol
 

Circes

Strutting her stuff
#17
great thread!

can i check something, i checked the syns for some coucous...it came up as 6 syns dried, 100g cooked - so i measure 100g when its cooked, its quite easy to think that measurement is dried then it expands and more syns are added....or maybe its just me lol
Plain cous cous? On what plan? It is free on green and EE, only synnable on red days.

But yes the syns you give are cooked weight rather than dried and it can make a big difference
 
#19
great thread!

can i check something, i checked the syns for some coucous...it came up as 6 syns dried, 100g cooked - so i measure 100g when its cooked, its quite easy to think that measurement is dried then it expands and more syns are added....or maybe its just me lol
if it is plain cous cous it should be free, even some flavoured varieties I have discovered to be free.

Are you selecting your free food first, when putting the nutritional info into the syns calculator ?

If you are not selecting your free food, then it will calculate it as syns.