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J Am Diet Assoc. 2000 Jan;100(1):43-51, quiz 49-50.

Food sources of added sweeteners in the diets of Americans.

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Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, US Food and Drug Administration, Washington, DC 20204, USA.



To identify food sources of added sweeteners in the US diet.


A descriptive study using data from the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) 1994-1996 Continuing Survey of Food Intakes by Individuals. Each subject provided one 24-hour dietary recall. Intake of added sweeteners was calculated using the USDA Food Guide Pyramid servings database.


A national sample of noninstitutionalized persons aged 2 years and older (N = 15,010).


Mean intakes of added sweeteners from all food sources and from specific food categories; percentage contribution of added sweeteners to total energy intake; and percentage contribution of each food category to total intake of added sweeteners. All analyses were conducted for the total sample and for 12 age-gender groups.


During 1994 to 1996, Americans aged 2 years and older consumed the equivalent of 82 g carbohydrate per day from added sweeteners, which accounted for 16% of total energy intake. In absolute terms, adolescent males consumed the most; as a percentage of energy, male and female adolescents had the highest intakes (averaging 20% of total energy from added sweeteners). The largest source of added sweeteners was regular soft drinks, which accounted for one third of intake. Other sources were table sugars, syrups, and sweets; sweetened grains; regular fruitades/drinks; and milk products.


Intakes of added sweeteners exceed levels compatible with meeting current dietary recommendations. Knowing food sources of added sweeteners for the overall population and for specific age-gender groups can help dietitians provide appropriate nutrition education.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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