Most discretionary calories allowances are very small, between 100 and 300 calories, especially for those who are not physically active. How do we track these extra calories?
One example is a regular 12-ounce soda that contains 155 calories but all 155 of these calories are from added sugars and, thus, are considered “discretionary” calories. Keep in mind that, for many people, the discretionary calories allowance is totally used up in the foods they choose in each food group, such as higher-fat meats, higher-fat cheeses, whole milk, and sweetened bakery products.
Your discretionary calories can be used to:
Added fats and sugars are always counted as discretionary calories, as in the following examples: