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Top 10 Calorie Sources in U.S. Diet Sound a Warning

By Sandy Schroeder

The latest report from the U.S. Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee lists the top 10 sources of calories in the American diet, and the results raise questions about our health.

Healthy choices like leafy greens, citrus, whole grains and low fat dairy have been replaced by cakes, cookies, pies and granola bars that are heavy on sugar, fat and calories.

Here are the top 10 choices Americans are eating now:

  • Yeast breads
  • Chicken and chicken based dishes
  • Soda, energy drinks, and sports drinks
  • Pizza
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Pasta and pasta dishes
  • Mexican dishes
  • Beef and beef based dishes
  • Dairy desserts

The panel of nutritionists suggest countering this list with food choices that are heathy and delicious. If that list sounds awfully familiar to you, Jamie Oliver’s “Everyday Superfoods” book may provide some tempting alternatives.

Serve eggs – Fresh veggie omelets or egg salad sandwiches deliver Vitamin B12 and valuable protein to energize your day.

Choose squash – Try Epicurious.com for some delicious squash recipes as main dishes or side dishes to give you a full dose of Vitamin A for good vision.

Breakfast with oats – Heart healthy old-fashioned oats will keep you full all morning. Cook them with brown sugar or top them with fresh fruit. Later, whip up a batch of dark chocolate oatmeal cookies.

Add some shrimp – Shrimp tacos, shrimp salad and shrimp dips will disappear quickly at your house, delivering a healthy dose of Vitamin B12.

Stir in mushrooms – Add rich flavor to gravy, stir fries or soups with your choice of mushrooms. You will also be adding lots of healthy protein and B vitamins.

Yams and sweet potatoes – Vitamin C, A, potassium, manganese and thiamine are all part of the package when you serve sweet potato casseroles or muffins.

Enjoy fresh berries – Choose strawberries, raspberries or blueberries to load up with antioxidants, protecting the brain and helping to stabilize blood sugar. Serve them fresh for snacks or turn them into delicious salads and tarts.

Power up with spinach – Enjoy vitamin-loaded spinach pies, salads and soups. Stir fresh leaves into your stir fries and serve them as a side with chicken or fish.

Green tea, waters, and juices – Replace sugar loaded sodas and sports drinks with healthy green or black teas, sparkling waters and pure citrus juices.

As you buy more fresh foods, and find more special recipes, eating healthy may become a natural habit. Wherever you are with your diet right now, do your best to avoid the top 10 list that’s loaded with fat, sugar and calories. Keep looking for healthy choices that please you. 

To learn more about your health and wellness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Monrovia, Calif.

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