Nutrition Label Help
Since it is National Nutrition Month, hopefully many of you are trying to be more aware of what you’re eating. Although you may have good intentions, food companies have marketing tactics that can easily trick us into buying the less healthy choices that are available. Here are some easy tips for tricky foods so you do not fall for the label and make the healthy choice you intended.
Juices are one of the biggest culprits of misleading advertisements. When choosing a juice you always want to make sure it is 100% juice. This will be the most natural juice and not have as much added sugars and flavors as other choices, like juices that are made from concentrate. Fortified juices are also a positive thing to consider when choosing a brand. For example, orange juice will often have added Vitamins in it.
Granola bars are a great snack to have in the house. They are easy to take with you on the go, which is very important for most of us during our busy days! But, there are a lot of granola bars out there that have much more sugar then nutritional value. In order to choose the healthier options, look for low sugar on the label. Granola bars that have higher fiber content are also normally a good indication of good nutritional value.
Besides reading the label, a way to know you are choosing healthy peanut butter, made with real ingredients, is that there should be some natural oils lying on top of the solidified product. When reading the label, you will see that peanut butter has a high amount of fat. Don’t worry, this fat is ok! As long as it is eaten in proper portion sizes, peanut butter provides healthy fats your body needs. What you don’t want to see on the label is ingredients other then peanuts, especially not added sugars.
In general, when looking at a nutrition label – the less ingredients, the better. When a label has a very long list of ingredients there are most likely food additives that are unnecessary and unhealthy to consume. You should be able to recognize the names of the ingredients of the foods you’re choosing to buy as well.
If you are looking for a product that is a rich source of a nutrient, it is important to look at the daily values (the % listed on). For example, if you want a food that is a good source of fiber, do not only trust if the box says “good source of fiber!” If the daily value is 20% or more, it is considered a good, rich source of that nutrient.
It is important to not buy food blindly or based on brand, always check the label, and if you are unsure seek a Registered Dietitian for label help!
Eat Right Bucks County has offices in Doylestown & Buckingham, Pa. We have four Registered & Licensed Dietitians/Nutritionist here to help you learn how to eat healthy, lose weight, tackle medical conditions and customize a personalized plan for you! And did you know most insurance plans cover Nutrition Counseling? Plans including Blue Cross- Personal Choice & Keystone East, Aetna, Cigna & More!