Nutrition Week: Low Fat Dairy

March 6, 2014

Nutrition Week. Day 4. Dairy.

Dairy foods are rich in calcium and protein but if chosen in their whole fat form can provide a lot of saturated fat and cholesterol. Like our protein and whole grains we want to choose our dairy wisely. Best options include fat free or low fat (1%) milk, fat-free or low fat yogurt and reduced fat cheeses. Try to limit the amount of reduced fat (2%) and whole milk, and cottage cheese.

High sugar consumption is not consistent with a healthy diet. So I also want to touch base about the sugar in milk. There has been a media attention around sugar, added sugar vs. naturally occurring sugar.  A normal milk label reads 14 grams of sugars per serving. This sugar found in milk is 100% natural there is —no added sugar. This sugar in milk is called lactose. Nutritionally speaking what we are concerned about are added sugars in diet not naturally occurring sugar like the sugar in milk.

So how much added sugar is just right? The American Heart Association (AHA) recommends limiting the amount of added sugars you consume to no more than half of your daily discretionary calories allowance. For most American women, that’s no more than 100 calories per day, or about 6 teaspoons of sugar. For men, it’s 150 calories per day, or about 9 teaspoons.

 

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