Reading Food Labels - How Does It Help Buy Healthier Foods
Reading food labels will make it much easier for you to compare foods and find the foods that have the nutritional value your child needs. It will help you and your family make healthy choices about the foods you are buying.
Food labels can help you limit the amount of fat, sugar and cholesterol in your diet by making it easy for you to compare one food item with another and choose the one with lower amounts. Conversely, you can use food labels to find food items higher in vitamins, fiber and protein.
The nutritional information found on a food label is based on one serving of that particular food. That is one of the most common mistakes people make when reading food labels. A food label may indicate that a food has 100 calories and only 5 grams of sugar, for example. But if you look at the number of servings, it may state three. That means that if you were to eat the entire package, you would be getting three times the amount shown on the food label. In this example, 300 calories and 15 grams of sugar. Don't be fooled, always look at what makes one serving (which the food label information is based on) and how many servings in that package!
Food labels also tell exactly what is inside the package. Just look at the list of ingredients. The first ingredient represents the ingredient with the most amount, the second ingredient is the second highest amount and so on.
Written by Maggie LaBarbera
Written on May 14, 2012
Last updated on Feb 24, 2014