Health Canada has rolled out some important additions to the Canadian Nutrition Facts table and Ingredients Lists that we see on our food. Included in these changes is the introduction of a % Daily Value for sugar on the Nutrition Facts table. Read on to find out what this means and see an example of what 100 grams of sugar per day looks like.

Disclaimer: This post was developed in partnership with the Canadian Sugar Institute, however all opinions are genuine and my own.

There are some changes that have been made to the Nutrition Facts Table and Ingredients List in Canada. One of these changes includes the introduction of a % Daily Value (% DV) for sugar on the Nutrition Facts table. Before we learn more about this, we have to first understand what % DV means.

What is % Daily Value?

The % DV is located on the right hand side of the nutrition facts table, and it shows you how much a nutrient in a serving of food contributes to a total daily intake. It helps you understand if the serving size of a food has a little or a lot of a nutrient.


  • 5% or less is a little
  • 15% or more is a lot
nutrition facts table highlighting the % daily value column
Image from

Understanding the % Daily Value for Sugars:

The new % DV for sugars is based on 100 grams of total sugars per day in a 2,000 calorie diet.

Total sugars includes both sugars occurring naturally in food (like fruits and vegetables) and sugars that are added to foods (like sugar, honey, maple syrup, glucose-fructose, and concentrated fruit juice).

image comparing the old canadian nutrition facts table and the updated nutrition facts table with % daily value for total sugars

Should I be eating 100 grams of sugar per day?

It’s important to note that according to Health Canada, “this value is not a recommended level of intake. Instead, it is the amount of total sugars that is consistent with a healthy eating pattern. That is, a diet where sugars come mostly from fruit, vegetables, and plain milk.”

It’s also important to note that not everyone follows a 2,000 calorie diet or eats 2,000 calories per day. The amount of sugars consistent with a healthy eating pattern would be less for those who eat fewer than 2,000 calories per day, and higher for those who consume more.

The reason for introducing the % Daily Value for sugars is to help consumers:

  • Compare the sugars content of different foods, and
  • Understand the relative amount of sugars in the context of total daily consumption

While it’s recommend that sugars should mostly come from foods like fruits, vegetables, and milk products, you don’t have to give up sweets or other foods with added sugars altogether. There is room for both.

What does 100 grams of sugar per day look like?

Not sure what 100 grams of sugars in a 2,000 calorie meal plan looks like? I wasn’t either! Upon learning about the % DV based on 100 grams of sugar per day, I too found this challenging to picture. Thankfully, the Dietitians at the Canadian Sugar Institute invited me to a virtual workshop called the Sweet Spot Challenge.

In the workshop, we had the chance to join cookbook author and former Chatelaine food editor, Claire Tansey to prepare a full day’s menu totalling 100 grams of sugar. The delicious recipes were from Claire’s most recent cookbook Dinner, Uncomplicated: Fixing a Delicious Meal Every Night of the Week.

I snapped some photos of all of the meals included. Check them out!

Daily Menu with 100 grams of sugars:

Breakfast: Instant Bircher Muesli

bircher muesli topped with pears and seeds
A delicious and fibre-rich breakfast made with quick oats, apple juice, fruit, walnuts and seeds.

Snack 1: Secretly Green Smoothie

smoothie in a mason jar
There’s greens in there! A high-protein smoothie made with Greek yogurt, banana, raspberries, kale, and milk.

Lunch: Roasted Vegetable & Hummus Pita Pizza

pita pizza with hummus and roasted vegetables
A pita pizza “crust” topped with roasted veggies, hummus, and feta cheese.

Side/Snack 2: Crunchy Coleslaw

cabbage coleslaw garnished with parsley
The perfect side dish or snack if you want something crunchy. Made with Savoy cabbage, apple, green onions, dill, and a creamy curry coleslaw dressing.

Dinner: Teriyaki Tofu with Bok Choy

tofu stir fry over brown rice with baby bok choy
A 15-minute meal from Claire Tansey’s cookbook: Dinner, Uncomplicated.

Dessert: Apple Galette

slice of apple galette on a plate
Sweet, baked apples in Claire Tansey’s Forgiving Food Processor Pastry. So good!

As you can see, this menu is full of delicious and nutritious meals, snacks, and even dessert! This just goes to show how balanced 100 grams of sugar per day can look.

Helpful Resources:

If you’d like to learn more about sugar and the Sweet Spot Challenge, you check out the Canadian Sugar Institute by visiting

For more daily menus based on the 100 gram Daily Value for Sugars from the Canadian Sugar Institute (like the one pictured below), click here.

diagram with meal examples demonstrating what 100 grams of sugars per day looks like

Disclaimer: This post was developed in partnership with the Canadian Sugar Institute, however all opinions are genuine and my own.

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