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Foods 2017, 6(9), 75; doi:10.3390/foods6090075

Examining the Relationship between Free Sugars and Calorie Contents in Canadian Prepacked Foods and Beverages

Department of Nutritional Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto, FitzGerald Building, 150 College Street, Toronto, ON M5S 3E2, Canada
Biostatistics Division, Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto, Health Sciences Building, 155 College Street, Toronto, ON M5T 3M7, Canada
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 1 August 2017 / Revised: 18 August 2017 / Accepted: 24 August 2017 / Published: 5 September 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Food Reformulation and Innovation for Human Health)
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To align with broader public health initiatives, reformulation of products to be lower in sugars requires interventions that also aim to reduce calorie contents. Currently available foods and beverages with a range of nutrient levels can be used to project successful reformulation opportunities. The objective of this study was to examine the relationship between free sugars and calorie levels in Canadian prepackaged foods and beverages. This study was a cross-sectional analysis of the University of Toronto’s 2013 Food Label Database, limited to major sources of total sugar intake in Canada (n = 6755). Penalized B-spline regression modelling was used to examine the relationship between free sugar levels (g/100 g or 100 mL) and caloric density (kcal/100 g or 10mL), by subcategory. Significant relationships were observed for only 3 of 5 beverage subcategories and for 14 of 32 food subcategories. Most subcategories demonstrated a positive trend with varying magnitude, however, results were not consistent across related subcategories (e.g., dairy-based products). Findings highlight potential areas of concern for reformulation, and the need for innovative solutions to ensure free sugars are reduced in products within the context of improving overall nutritional quality of the diet. View Full-Text
Keywords: sugars; free sugars; calories; food supply; nutrient composition; food reformulation sugars; free sugars; calories; food supply; nutrient composition; food reformulation

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Bernstein, J.T.; Lou, W.; L’Abbe, M.R. Examining the Relationship between Free Sugars and Calorie Contents in Canadian Prepacked Foods and Beverages. Foods 2017, 6, 75.

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