By Paula Ebben, WBZ-TVBy Paula Ebben

BOSTON (CBS) — Like many Americans, 21-year-old Sharon Senke has a major sweet tooth.

“I don’t think I’ve gone a day in my life without something sugary,” she said.  “It’s been such a big part of my life.”

But her recent weight gain and the fact that both of her parents are diabetic have Sharon thinking she needs to make some changes in her diet.

She went to registered dietitian Monique Biddle who took her shopping at Whole Foods.

WBZ-TV’s Paula Ebben reports

Biddle suggests bringing cut-up fruit to work to avoid a trip to the vending machine during those afternoon hours when nearly everyone gets a craving for a little something to get them through the day.

She told Senke to try different kinds of fruit and even different forms of it, like fruit chips, strips and leather.  “They have all kinds of different fruit leather and again it’s just a different way to have the fruit,” she said.

For a cool treat, Senke suggests freezing grapes or grabbing a low-calorie frozen fruit bar to satisfy your sweet tooth.

According to Senke, some vegetables might even do the trick.

“I don’t know if you’ve ever had pea pods, but they’re so nice and sweet and they really taste good and they crunch,” She said. “When things crunch, you feel more satisfied.”

If you absolutely must have dessert, be smart about what you choose, Biddle warns.

“These are individual cakes,” she said, pointing at an array of petite pastries.  “If you just eat one, it would be a whole lot better than eating a whole cake,” she said.

Biddle also warned Sharon to be careful of hidden sugars.  Items like pasta sauce, baked beans and even some non-dairy coffee creamers are loaded with extra sugar.

You might also want to keep a close eye on labels of low-fat foods. Manufacturers sometimes have to add extra sugar to make up for the flavor lost when they removed the fat.


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