1. Why should you take the time to read food labels? After all, isn’t it just a lot of fine print? Actually, food labels can provide valuable information that can help you make healthier choices.
2. What types of information can you find on a food label? The label will tell you the name of the product, the amount of the product in the package, the manufacturer or distributor, and contact information. The label will also list the ingredients in the product in order of predominance, from most to least. In addition, the label will provide nutrition information, including calories, fat, sodium, and other nutrients.
3. How can you use food label information to make healthier choices? By reading the label, you can compare similar products and choose the one that is lower in calories or fat, for example. You can also see how much of a particular nutrient is in a serving of the food. This is important because even if a food is low in calories, it may be high in sugar or fat.
4. What are some common terms found on food labels? “Natural” and “artificial flavors” are two common terms found on food labels. Natural flavors come from plants or animals and are used to enhance the flavor of a food. Artificial flavors are created in a laboratory and are used to imitate natural flavors or create new flavors.
5. What do food label symbols mean? You may see symbols on food labels that indicate whether a product is organic, has been certified by a third-party organization, or is made with certain ingredients (such as gluten-free or non-GMO).
6. How can you tell if a food is high in sugar, fat, or sodium? The nutrition facts panel on the food label will list the amount of sugar, fat, and sodium in a serving of the food. These nutrients are usually listed as percentages of the daily value (DV). The DV is based on a 2,000 calorie diet. So, if a food has 20% DV for sugar, that means it has 4 grams of sugar per serving (20% of 8 grams).
7. How can you tell if a food is low in calories or nutritious? The nutrition facts panel will also list the number of calories in a serving of the food. If a food is low in calories, it will have 40 calories or less per serving. If a food is nutritious, it will have 10% DV or more for one or more nutrients (such as fiber, vitamin A, vitamin C).
8. What are some tips for reading food labels? Here are some tips to keep in mind when readingfood labels:
• Read the entire label from top to bottom and left to right.
• Pay attention to serving size and number of servings per container – this will help you understand how much of the product you should eat.
• Compare similar products and choose the one that is lower in calories or fat.
• Look for foods that are high in fiber and vitamins but low in sugar and fat