Carbohydrate “shopping,” identifying fiber and what about those artificial sweeteners?

Read Section 4.6, Meeting Recommendations for Carbohydrate Intake (pages 137-147 for those with a physical text), including Off the Label: What does the Ingredient List tell You about Carbohydrates (in section 4.6, or page 144-5 for those with the physical textbook). Importantly, read The Role of Alternative Sweeteners in Section 4.6 (144-147).

Background information to aid in understanding:; if these three files do not open, here they are individually (these are mp3 files which are from figures in the text):

  • figure_04-07_carbohydrate_digestion.mp3
  • figure_04-10_blood_glucose_reg.mp3
  • figure_04-18_cholesterol_soluble_fiber.mp3

View the following links:


Include any of the following in your discussion with regard to what you have read and viewed or discuss something else you may have found from the information:

    • How would you respond to a friend that wants to know whether regular or diet soft drinks are healthier? Is it better to have 10 teaspoons worth of sugar in every 12 oz. can of Pepsi or should you drink Diet soft drinks, with sugar substitutes instead?? (There is no right or wrong answer here; but support your opinion with information from the text, articles or other reliable Internet sources).
    • Do you think the new label, which will indicate “added sugars” as well as sugars, to distinguish between what sugars are in the product (such as orange juice from oranges) and those added (such as Sunny Delight, which has more added sugars than any which is included from fruit) will help consumers make a decision?
    • Did you previously think that buying “7 grain” or “multi-grain” bread meant you were getting a decent amount of fiber? Now that you know the important word to see is “whole” grain bread, will it change your investigation of bread products?
    • Keep in mind that foods with sugar previously from the sugar cane plant now have High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS), a much more cheaply made sugar (farmers get subsidized to grow corn and you also need a lot less of HFCS to give the sweetness Americans like). HFCS is simply an artificially made (and highly proprietary) sucrose, where sucrose would normally have a 50:50 ratio of glucose to fructose, but HFCS as a higher amount of fructose than glucose and therefore “high fructose corn syrup.” If you are shopping in the center part of the grocery store….everything,actually even including most breads, contains HFCS. (Though research is mixed, HCFS is still “added sugar”). However, there are at least 60 different names for sugar so it’s easy to see how we can stack up on added sugars, far beyond the limit of 10 teaspoons a day.
    • What are your own thoughts on the amount of sugars in the diet based on what you have learned? Do you have any other observations you would like to discuss about the impact of sugars, refined grains and starches – or even excess calories – with regard to Diabetes? How can people be made aware of the subtle things they should look for when shopping?


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