Health Tip: Budget Your Calories
-- The U.S. Department of Agriculture suggests that you budget calories the way you do money -- in general, don't use more than you need.
The agency refers to calories consumed beyond what are essential as "discretionary" calories. It offers these suggestions to help you manage discretionary calories while maintaining a healthy weight:
- The agency suggests you consume a relatively small amount of discretionary calories -- 100 to 300 extra calories each day. The total can vary somewhat based on how much physical activity you get.
- The discretionary calorie allowance can be used on "goodies" that contain solid fats or added sugars. Examples include whole milk, cheese, sausage, biscuits, or sweetened cereals or yogurt.
- The discretionary allowance can also be used by adding a sauce, dressing, butter or sweetened syrup to your food.
- Other goodies that may qualify for this allowance include candy, alcohol or soda.
Posted: January 2009