Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Sweets, Snacks & Beverage Tips

Sweets and Snacks

Watch out for sweets.
  • Fill up on healthy foods so that you are not as hungry for sweets.
  • Try fruit for dessert.
  • Save sweets for special occasions (birthdays and holidays), not every day!
  • When you do eat sweets, eat small amounts.
  • Avoid doughnuts, sweet rolls, pies, cakes, cookies, candy bars, milk chocolate, caramel candies, and cream-filled desserts.
  • Small amounts of dark chocolate (more than 50% cacao [cocoa] solids) are okay 2–3 times a week. A small amount is ½–1 oz. (or ¼ of a standardsized candy bar).
  • Avoid foods with added sugar when you can. Many processed foods contain high fructose corn syrup—foods like salad dressings, spaghetti sauces, ketchup, baked goods, and even bread.
Choose cold and frozen desserts with care.
  • For a refreshing summer dessert, have a chilled slice of watermelon or a bowl of fresh berries with plain yogurt.
  • Popsicles can be a tasty treat. Be sure store-bought popsicles are made with 100% fruit juice, or make your own! Freeze 100% fruit juice in small cups with popsicle sticks.
  • Eat a small amount of ice milk, sherbet, or frozen yogurt instead of ice cream, but not too often—they still have added sugar and can be high in calories.
Go easy on snack chips and crackers.
  • Snack chips and crackers can be high in trans fats, which are NOT good for you. Check the ingredients list for partially hydrogenated vegetable oil or look for trans fat on the food label.
  • Choose whole grain crackers with no trans fats.
  • Look for snack foods that are unsalted or only lightly salted.
  • Have raw vegetables or fruit, a small handful of nuts, or unbuttered popcorn.
Beverage Tips

Choose healthy drinks.
  • Stay away from sodas, bottled fruit drinks, sports drinks, and other sugary beverages—they are full of sugar, which means lots of empty calories!
  • Avoid drinks that list high fructose corn syrup, corn syrup, or corn sweetener on the ingredients list—these sugars are not good for you.
  • Instead of Kool-Aid™ or sweet tea, drink water with a twist of lemon or lime, sparkling water with a splash of 100% fruit juice, or iced tea with lemon.
  • Try a little skim milk in your hot or cold tea or coffee instead of sugar.
Choose 100% fruit juice, but not too much!
  • Go easy on the fruit juice. Aim for 8 ounces or less each day.
  • Check the label to make sure you drink 100% fruit juice.
  • Choose whole fruit instead of juice whenever possible.

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