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Saturday, May 26, 2007

Suggestion #1 for an easy move to a healthier lifestyle

Suggestion #1. for an easy move to a healthier lifestyle. Sugar is move evil then we realize!
1. Take a good look at what you eat or drink each day. Beverages can often be responcible for putting on a lot more weight then a person realizes, and can often make a difference in how a person feels too.
Do you drink a lot of regular pop?
You may wish to figure out how much sugar
you get from soft drinks per day or week or
month. Or even per year!
It works out to 48 grams of sugar per 12 OZ bottle of pop approx. Then just take 48 x how many cans you drink in a week and times that by 52 if you want the annual amount too.
My amature calculation based on a person who only drinks 1 355 ml can of regular pop a week( not the 12 oz bottle):
1 355 ml can of regular pop = 150 calories in sugar or 10 tsp of sugar
7800 calories per year or 2.23 pounds of weight per year in pop!
Not to mention everything else we eat with a lot of sugar hidden inside.
According to the July 1998 issue of Better
Nutrition, the average American sugar
consumption has risen to 148 lb. per person
per year, which is over 1/3 lb. or 600 KCal
per day!
Dr. Alan Greene MD FAAP says
The best research on NutraSweet (aspartame) has not shown any conclusive problems. In the body, it breaks down into two amino acids that are naturally a part of the diet. sugar is loaded with calories and it puts stress on the body's mechanisms for regulating energy levels.
I have no problems with sugar when it comes with fiber. You may not want to develop a taste for the sugar because the amounts may not stay small. In small amounts, neither choice is very harmful. But of course, neither has great benifits. Personally, I prefer water, milk, and flavored waters. If choosing between the two soda possibilities, I would opt for the artificially sweetened soda.
A bowl of sweetened cereal for breakfast,
a cup of fruit yogurt for a snack,
scoop of sherbet for dessert
You've just had more than 20 teaspoons of sugar
Added sugar used to be a treat, but now it's a major part of the American diet. According to a 2004 report from the American Dietetic Association, sweeteners account for about 15 percent of our daily calories. But that's just an average. Many people get 30 percent or more of their calories from added sugars -- far more than any body really wants or needs.
Sugar is a short-term source of both energy and pleasure. But at a time when sugar is everywhere, it's time to ask some important questions. What are the dangers of sugars? And how much is too much?

The 10 percent rule
According to the World Health Organization, no more than 10 percent of calories should come from added sweeteners. This advice is in line with the long-standing recommendations of the U.S. Department of Agriculture food pyramid, called for a maximum of 12 teaspoons of sugar (48 grams) in a 2,200-calorie diet, ( one can of regular pop exhasts your sugar quotea for the day.) which translates to roughly 9 percent of daily calories.
In a diet composed of 2,000 daily calories, that would amount to about 200 calories, or 50 grams of sugar.
A single bowl of Frosted Mini Wheats contains three teaspoons (12 grams) of sugar;
some raisin bran contains 20 grams;
a 32-ounce sports drink can contain 19 teaspoons (76 grams) of sugar,
20-ounce Fruitopia fruit drink can pack nearly 18 teaspoons (71 grams) of
By glancing at the nutrition labels, you'll notice that a mini-candy bar often contains 10 grams of sugar, and that some "health" bars offer even more.
If you're used to having a scone for breakfast,
candy at the office,
a sweetened-yogurt smoothie for lunch,
sweetened iced tea or colas in the mid-afternoon,
and ice cream after dinner,
you may find out you're getting two or four or five times as much sugar as recommended.
If you regularly drink 100 percent fruit juice. These products don't contain any added sugar, but they're still plenty sweet. A small, 4.2-ounce juice box has nearly four teaspoons (15 grams) of sugar. The sugar may be natural, but as far as your body is concerned, it's no different from any other type of sugar.
And be sure to count the "hidden" sources of sugar, too -- soups, canned spaghetti sauce, and even pork and beans may all contain significant amounts of added sugar.
For every sugary product, however, there's a low-sugar or sugar-free alternative. For many people, cutting back on sugar is as simple as drinking skim milk or diet sodas instead of regular sodas , or water.
You can make your own smoothies using fruits and non-sugared yogurt.
A bowl of Cheerios contains just a quarter-teaspoon (1 gram) of sugar.

The sugar in a muffin or a cappuccino will take a big chunk out of your calorie quota for the day without moving you closer to your daily goals for minerals, vitamins, and other nutrients. If you eat too much of the sweet stuff, you'll have trouble getting enough healthy nutrients without going overboard on calories.
Reported in the Journal of the American Medical Association in 2004, roughly two-thirds of American adults and one-third of kids are heavy enough to put their health at risk. Sugar isn't the only cause of weight problems, but it's hard to imagine us ever reaching this sad state of affairs without a big lift from sweets and sodas.
According to a report from the American Dietetic Association, regular sodas and other sugary beverages may be especially hard on the waistline. For one thing, liquids tend to be less filling than solids. High fructose corn syrup—the sweetener found in almost all sugary drinks—further tricks the body by blunting the hormones (insulin and leptin) that make you feel full.
A Harvard university study published in the Lancet in 2001 provided strong evidence that sweet drinks really can lead to extra weight, at least in children. The study found that each daily serving of soda or other sugary drinks raised a child's risk of obesity significantly.
Some studies have found that diets high in sugar can quickly boost triglycerides, fats in the blood that can clog the arteries. Some people react to sugar more strongly than others, and it's not clear if the triglyceride bounce lasts long enough to seriously raise the risk of heart disease.
In some cases, sugar doesn't deserve its bad reputation. According to the American Dietetic Association, sugar doesn't make kids hyperactive or cause other behavior problems. Sugary foods don't raise the risk of type 2 diabetes, either, unless a person happens to become overweight from eating too many sweets ( 1 small happy moment for sugar lovers)

Nutrition experts agree that too much sugar is unhealthy. Unfortunately, they can't agree on how much is too much. Under pressure from the sugar industry, some health agencies have backed down on long-established guidelines. The new guidelines, released in 2005, don't offer specific recommendations for sugar, and the government's 2005 Dietary Guidelines for Americans merely states that sugar should be used "in moderation."
The Institute of Medicine and the American Dietetic Association are especially forgiving when it comes to sugar. Both say that it's safe to get as much as 25 percent of daily calories from added sugar. For a person on a 2,200-calorie diet, that means roughly 35 teaspoons (140 grams) of sugar each day.
So if you're a highly active person who burns a lot of calories and doesn't worry about weight, you may decide to sweeten things up a bit.
But is 35 teaspoons of sugar a day too much for the average person? The next time you're shopping for groceries or picking out a snack, try to picture all of that sugar piled up in a bowl. Given a choice, you'd probably want to leave some of that stuff for another day.
CONCLUSION: If you like pop and don't or are not ready to give it up, switch to diet , if you haven't done so already by the end of this post. It's only 1 step in the right direction, but baby steps are better then no steps and nasty health issues.