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Counting calories for weight loss in 2013

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TYLER (KYTX) - We've seen restaurants list calories next to healthy menu items, but recently some of them have launched campaigns advertising meals for 600 calories or less.

"The magic number seems to be 600 per meal."

Robert Owens is owner of Corner Bakery in Tyler. He says by eating about 600 calories per meal, it helps him stay full and satisfied.

"If you stay 600, 600, 600, you're going to be in good shape."

Nutritionist for WIC, Jenny Lassiter, says listing menu items at 600 calories and under makes it easier for people to stay within their calorie goals.

"They may be trying to stay within 2,000 calories in a day. It might be 1,500 calories per day, 1,200 [calories.] It just kind of depends on what they're aiming for. So, it would definitely help them stay within their limits for the day."

Ruth Metsinger says eating at restaurants that list low calorie menu items has been helpful in her 2013 weight loss goals.

"I come here every day and I've already lost 13 pounds."

She says she tries to stick to about 350 calories for breakfast, and 600 for lunch and dinner.

"It's very important to me- to my whole family." she says. "They talk calories all the time."

"Sometimes, it's nice to just have the calorie count so you can compare one item to another or one meal to another." says Lassiter.

Let's say you're choosing to eat a sandwich for lunch. Health experts say when the calories are listed on the menu, you're more likely to make healthier eating choices.

"Maybe when you're trying to choose between two and one is lower calorie," says Lassiter, "you'll choose to go with the lower calorie option."

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