Foods high in sugar provide calories, but they rarely provide other healthful nutrients. In addition, sugar-containing foods, mainly sodas, have been associated with increasing rates of obesity. Therefore, the American Heart Association recommends reducing added sugars in foods to no more than half of the discretionary calorie allowance, which is outlined in the USDA Dietary Guidelines for Americans.
- For most American women this is no more than 100 calories (6 teaspoons) per day.
Here are some simple ways to reduce sugar in your diet:
- Limit regular soda to no more than 36 ounces (450 calories) per week. One 12-ounce can of regular soda contains 150 calories (about 9 teaspoons) from sugar.
- Switch from regular soda or fruit juices to no-calorie, diet beverages.
- Limit use of added sugar or switch to non-nutritive sweeteners (Nutrasweet, Splenda, Truvia, etc.)
- Try limiting sweets by having only one or two “family dessert nights” every week; for example, only on Fridays and Saturdays.