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HIDDEN SUGAR SOURCES in foods we eat

Pasta sauces have up to 12 g of sugar in a half a cup of of sauce- That’s the amount of sugar in a chocolate chip cookie

Yogurt can have between 17-33 grams of sugar in 8ounces- read the labels

Instant oatmeal has about 10-15 g of sugar that is not found in oatmeal that is not in individual packages.

Many breakfast cereals have 10-20 grams of sugar

Energy drinks can have up to 25 grams of sugar or 100  calories in 8 ounces of fluid

Syrup in fruit packaging may have 39 grams of sugar-

Bottled tea  and apple juice are high in sugar too-

Choose low sugar options

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100 calorie snacks that are good for you

popcorn 6 cups

mini quesadilla

cottage cheese and cantaloupe

3 crackers and cheese

14 almonds

6 whole grain pretzels

baked apple

blueberry smoothie

1/3 cup edamame

3/4 cup mango cubes

8 baby carrots with hummus

apple slices with peanut butter

1 cup tomato soup

1/3 cup dry cereal

1 cup grapes

yoga with sunflower seeds

greek yogurt- 8 ounces

1/2 baked potato with salsa

Not-So-Super Snacks

Don’t make a habit of snacking on 100-calorie packs of crackers and cookies, which are mainly made with refined flour. These snack packs may be low in calories, but they’re also low in nutrients. It’s better to make your snacks work for you by delivering protein, fiber, or antioxidants.

20 pistachios

banana

 

Changes to Nutrition Labels Reported

(CNN) — Choosing healthier foods at the grocery store may soon be a little easier.

The Food and Drug Administration is proposing several changes to the nutrition labels you see on packaged foods and beverages. If approved, the new labels would place a bigger emphasis on total calories, added sugars and certain nutrients, such as Vitamin D and potassium.

The FDA is also proposing changes to serving size requirements in an effort to more accurately reflect what people usually eat or drink. For example, if you buy a 20-ounce soda, you’re probably not going to stop drinking at the 8-ounce mark. The new rules would require that entire soda bottle to be one serving size — making calorie counting simpler.

This is the first overhaul for nutrition labels since the FDA began requiring them more than 20 years ago. There has been a shift in shoppers’ priorities as nutrition is better understood and people learn what they should watch for on a label, administration officials said.

“You as a parent and a consumer should be able to walk into your local grocery store, pick up an item off the shelf, and be able to tell whether it’s good for your family,” first lady Michelle Obama said in a press release. “So this is a big deal, and it’s going to make a big difference for families all across this country.”

 

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The proposed labels would remove the “calories from fat” line you currently see on labels, focusing instead on total calories found in each serving. Nutritionists have come to understand that the type of fat you’re eating matters more than the calories from fat. As such, the breakdown of total fat vs. saturated and trans fat would remain.

Put down that doughnut: FDA takes on trans fat

The proposed labels would also note how much added sugar is in a product. Right now, it’s hard to know what is naturally occurring sugar and what has been added by the manufacturer.

“Now when Americans pull a product from the supermarket shelf, they will have a clear idea of how much sugar that product really contains,” American Heart Association CEO Nancy Brown said.

Chemically, added sugar is the same, but studies show many Americans eat more sugar than they realize. TheAmerican Heart Association recommends you limit added sugar to no more than half your daily discretionary calories. That means for American men, about 150 calories a day, or nine teaspoons. For women it’s a smaller amount — no more than 100 calories per day from added sugar, or about six teaspoons of sugar.

The FDA also plans to update the daily values for certain nutrients such as sodium, dietary fiber and Vitamin D. For instance, the daily limit for sodium was 2,400 milligrams. If the new rules take effect, the daily value will be 2,300 milligrams, administration officials said.

Food and beverage companies would also be required to declare the amount of Vitamin D and potassium in a product, as well as calcium and iron. Research shows Americans tend not to consume enough Vitamin D for good bone health. And potassium is essential in keeping your blood pressure in check.

Vegetarian diet could help lower your blood pressure

Administration officials said about 17% of current serving size requirements will be changing, and the FDA is adding 25 categories for products that weren’t commonly around 20 years ago (think pot stickers, sesame oil and sun-dried tomatoes).

Most of the required serving sizes will be going up; no one eats just half a cup of ice cream, for instance. Others, like yogurt, will be going down.

“This will help people better understand how many calories they actually consume, especially if they plan to eat all the food in a container or package,” Brown said.

While the American Heart Association and advocacy group Center for Science in the Public Interest commended the FDA’s changes, they noted that there was more to do.

Both organizations said the FDA’s sodium recommendation was still too high. Brown said the association will continue to recommend sodium intake be limited to 1,500 milligrams a day.

CSPI said it will also request that the FDA include a daily value of 25 grams for added sugars. “Thus, the Nutrition Facts label for a 16.9-ounce bottle of soda would indicate that its 58 grams of added sugars represents 230 percent of the DV,” the group said in an e-mail.

With this announcement, the FDA has opened a 90-day comment period, during which experts and members of the public can provide input on the proposed rules. The FDA will then issue a final rule. Officials said they hope to complete the process this year.

Manufacturing companies will then have two years to implement the changes.

Nutrition labels have remained pretty much the same for decades. It wasn’t until the late 1960s that most food labels listed any nutrition information.

At the time, labels with calorie or sodium counts were mainly used on products the FDA considered to have “special dietary uses,” for people with high blood pressure who were watching sodium, for instance.

Most people were making meals at home then, so there wasn’t a huge demand for this information. That changed as more people started eating processed foods.

Noticing the trend, the White House pulled together a conference of nutritionists and food manufacturers in 1969. Nutrition labeling was voluntary at first. It wasn’t until 1990 that the FDA required nutrition labels for most prepared and packaged foods. Labels for raw produce and fish remain voluntary.

More Americans today are interested in what’s on these nutrition labels, research shows.

A USDA study released last month showed 42% of working-age adults between 29 and 68 looked at these labels most or all of the time when shopping. Some 57% of Americans older than 68 did as well. That’s up from 2007, when 34% of working-age adults looked at the label, and 51% of Americans older than 68 did.

The increase is good news as the United States struggles with an obesity epidemic. Some studies have shown that people who read labels eat healthier. More than a third of all Americans are obese, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Breakfast, the most important meal

You have all heard that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. WHY?
After sleeping for hours, and your body and metabolism is at rest, you need to provide energy to stoke the fire of the engine ( your metabolism). It should include complex carbohydrates, and protein to sustain you till your next meal. Here are some examples-
My breakfast today- 2 ounces of mixed whole grains- ( in microwave to cook for two minutes)
People who eat breakfast tend to weigh less than those who skip it because those who eat breakfast tend to feel less hungry throughout the day.

For protein I added 2 table spoons of Peanut butter
For sweetness- I added 1 serving of frozen blueberries
You have, protein, carbohydrate, fruit, and 600 calories of which 1/3 is complex carbohydrates.
Other suggestions might include:High fiber cereal, and yogurt. with a fresh fruit
Toast – Peanut butter, and fresh fruit, such as bananas or strawberries.

The top five breakfast items consumed in the US are coffee, cold cereal, juice, milk and fruit. All are good choices.

Eggs are also a good choice for protein, and omega three fats. I usually cook my eggs in advance in boiling water, then after they cool down I put them in the fridge for use at a later date. After breaking open and removing the shell at the time of use, I may add them to my salad, or make an egg salad with two eggs and 2 tablespoons of mayo, celery and onion ( chopped up).

Probiotics, Prebiotics, Acidophilus etc

Probiotics and Prebiotics

Probiotics are healthy bacteria and yeast that live in our gut where 70% of our immune system is located.
They help us digest food, fend off illness, and need to remain in balance to help us do these functions.
Stress, lack of sleep, unhealthy eating, infections, antibiotics, and certain drugs, can trigger digestive problems and illness. That’s where probiotics come in.
Probiotics keep the bacteria in check, restore balance, and promote health.
That’s why many doctors suggest taking probiotics while on antibiotics.
Probiotics may help reduce cold and flu symptoms.
Probiotics may also reduce the risk of allergy and eczema in children up to two years of age in mothers who took them late in pregnancy.
Certain strains of probiotics may help reduce symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome and ease colic in infants.
Probiotics and Prebiotics ( the carbohydrates that stimulate the growth of healthy bacteria) boost immunity in babies and are added to infant formulas.
Look for live yogurt cultures or formulas that contain lactobacillus or acidophilus and bifido bacteria.
Sauerkraut contains the probiotics leuconostoc, pediococcus, and lactobacillus. Choose unpasteurized sauerkraut because pasteurization (used to treat most supermarket sauerkraut) kills the helpful bacteria. Sauerkraut — and the similar but spicy Korean dish kimchi — is also loaded with vitamins that may help ward off infection.
While probiotic-foods contain live bacteria, prebiotic foods feed the good bacteria already living in your digestive system. You can find prebiotics in foods such as asparagus, Jerusalem artichokes, bananas, oatmeal, red wine, honey, maple syrup, and legumes. Consider eating prebiotic foods on their own or with probiotic foods to perhaps give the probiotics a boost.

Foods to improve memory, lower blood pressure, help Immune system

coffee- The antioxidants in coffee can protect against cell damage and reduce your risk of diabetes, heart disease and stroke

salmon ( wild type)- omega 3 fats fight against aging and lower inflammation in autoimmune diseases and enhance heart health

avocados- glutathione-an antioxidant that improves the function of your hormones

olives and olive oil- lower blood pressure and cholesterol due to their unsaturated fats

walnuts – have twice the amount of antioxidants as any other nut and contain high levels of vitamin E and omega 3 fats which enhance heart health.

green tea- catechins-an antioxidant that protects cells and may reduce the risk of cancers like stomach and esophagus.

sweet potatoes- b6 and potassium protect the immune system, lower blood pressure. The skins are high in fiber

dark chocolate-flavinoids-decrease blood cholesterol and blood pressure, heart attack and stroke risk

Asparagus-potassium and B12, for cell repair and maintenance. B12 can boost hearing

Garlic-sulfur compounds-when crushed releases allicin which wards off heart attacks and strokes

blueberries-antioxidants that help stave off memory loss