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Managing Meals Dietary Guidelines: Choose Beverages and Foods to Moderate Your Intake of Sugar

Norwalk Reflector Staff • Oct 28, 2015 at 3:47 PM

What does "moderate your intake of sugar" mean? It means that you should avoid eating too many foods that have a lot of added sugar such as soft drinks, cakes, cookies and candies.

There are two kinds of sugar in foods.

* Sugars that occur naturally in foods such as fruits.

* Sugars that are added to foods such as baked goods and jellies.

Sugars are carbohydrates. Carbohydrates are the main source of energy (or calories) for our bodies. If you eat too much sugar, you may gain extra pounds.

Eating sugars in moderation does not mean avoiding all sugars. Try to eat "nutrient dense" foods instead of foods that are sweet and full of "empty calories." Nutrient dense means the food has lots of vitamins and minerals as well as calories. Examples of "nutrient dense" foods are fruits and fruit juices. Examples of "empty calorie" foods are soft drinks and candy.

Here are some tips to help you lower the sugar in your diet.

* Get more of your calories from grains (especially whole grains), fruits and vegetables, low-fat or non-fat dairy products, and lean meats or meat substitutes.

* Do not let soft drinks or other sweets crowd out other healthier foods.

* Read food labels. Look for sugar on the nutrition facts label.

No one can force you to cut out sugar in your diet. The choice is yours.

Reprint Ohio State Extension

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