Food Labels to Watch
There are in fact two labels you should be watching out for when you make food choices. Using one alone can lead you astray and turn good intentions into bad decisions, do you know which one? You may not even realize the influence targeted wording has on your quick decision making while shopping. The first label is likely what you naturally think of when you read the word food label.
It’s the nutrition label…
Thanks to government policies, the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) and the Nutrition Labeling and Education Act (NLEA) require food manufacturers to provide a nutrition label on most food products. The nutrition label must contain the following information:
- Calories per serving
- Calories from fat per serving
- Grams of total fat, saturated fat, cholesterol, sodium, total carbohydrate, dietary fiber, sugar, and protein per serving
The other label is the health claims label…
You may notice that the nutrition label contains information about what is in the product, while a health claim makes a statement about the type of food and/or what the food can do for you.
You may be familiar with some of these popular claims on labels:
- Made with Real Fruit
- Trans Fat Free
- Immune Boosting
While it may seem that these labels are stating a fact, the reality is that these health claims may actually be fiction.
Currently, the FDA has very loose regulations regarding health claims and labels like “trans fat free” and many more. This means that food manufacturers can label foods with deceiving health claims in order to entice people to purchase their products.
So what’s the take-home message?
Don’t rely on nutrition labels and health claims to determine whether or not a food is healthy. The quality of the ingredients is the most important factor to consider. Before purchasing a food, read the ingredients list.
The healthiest foods are those that are natural. Hydrogenated oils and other food additives and preservatives can cause harm to your health when eaten regularly over time. Stick to fresh un-processed foods for optimum health!
For more information and to learn more about what ingredients to avoid, meet with Healthy Grocery Girl today!