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Nutrition Label Facts | Improve your health today! November 21, 2012

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Eat smart with these 8 pointers:


If you are like most people then you probably glance at the Nutrition Facts label on foods once in a while. Maybe you check for the number of calories or fat grams that an item contains, or maybe you are watching something specific – like your sodium intake.

Whatever the case, it has been proven that those who pay attention to the Nutrition Facts label end up eating healthier.

The more familiar you are with the Nutritional Facts label, the more likely you will be fit and healthy.

Each Nutritional Facts label has been designed to quickly and efficiently give you all of the important facts about a food item. You just need to know what you are looking for. Read on as we break down the Nutritional Facts label into 7 important facts.

Fact #1: Serving Size:


This small detail skews the entire label if you don’t read it closely. An item may seem like it is only one serving, but the Nutritional Facts label will consider it to be 2 or 3 servings. If the label says 100 calories, but there are actually 3 servings, then you are getting a total of 300 calories. Pay close attention to what makes a serving.

Fact #2: Percent of Daily Value:

The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000-calorie diet for healthy adults. Even if your diet is higher or lower in calories, you can still use the Percent Daily Value as a guide. For example, the Percent Daily Value can help you determine whether a food is high or low in specific nutrients:

  • If a food has 5 percent or less of a nutrient, it’s considered to be low in that nutrient.
  • If it has 20 percent or more, it’s considered to be high in that nutrient.


Fact #3: Calories:


Most people don’t have the time to count every calorie that they put in their mouth – this is understandable. However, you probably have a pretty good idea about the amount of food that you eat each day. When you approach a new item, read the calorie totals on the Nutritional Facts label, and factor the new calories into your daily intake. Steer clear of high calorie items – especially in the form of snack foods.

Fact #4: Total Fat:


By now you have undoubtedly heard that all fats were not created equal. Here is a quick 1-2-3 breakdown.

Limit your intake of Saturated Fats – this deadly fat contributes to heart disease.
Avoid Trans Fats at all costs – not only does it contribute to heart disease, it also raises LDL cholesterol (the bad one).
Focus on eating monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats – these don’t raise LDL cholesterol and can even help lower blood cholesterol.
As you decide what food to include in your diet, keep your eye on the type and amount of fat included in each item. Remember, all fats were not created equal.

Fact #5: Total Sodium:
Sodium free or no sodium Less than 5 milligrams of sodium and no sodium chloride in ingredients
Very low sodium 35 milligrams or less of sodium
Low sodium 140 milligrams or less of sodium
Reduced or less sodium At least 25 percent less sodium than the regular product

Fact #6: Total Carbohydrates:


Though zero carb diets are losing their momentum, you may have been influenced by the idea that all carbohydrates will make you fat. That is simply not true. It is true, however that some carbohydrates are healthier than others. In fact, medical experts think that excess consumption of refined carbohydrates (such as soda pop, white rice, and white flour) are one of the reasons behind the rise of obesity we see today.

Choose fibrous, complex carbohydrates over sugary, simple carbohydrates.

Fact #7: Protein:


The fact stands that most of us are getting plenty of protein in our diet. The problem arises when we examine the source of this protein. Meats and dairy products that are high full of fat may be filled with protein, but they aren’t the healthiest form of protein. Choose protein from lean meats, dry beans, poultry, and low fat/fat free dairy products.

Fact 8: The Good Stuff (Vitamins & Minerals):


Directly beneath the protein count on the Nutritional Facts label you will see the percent daily value of Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Calcium and Iron that the food item contains. These numbers are easily overlooked, but hold great importance to your overall health. The more nutrient-rich food items provide you with the greatest benefit per calorie. Compare food brands and choose the most nutrient-rich option.

Now it’s time to evaluate your lifestyle!


Now that you understand the Nutritional Facts label on your food, you may still have questions about how to change your fitness level. Eating right is just one part of the equation in your quest for a healthy, fit body.  If you have questions about how you can get into the best shape of your life, please contact us today. 

Call or email us today to get started on a  program that will greatly improve the way you look and feel.

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