Today’s post was written by Theresa Gilson, DTR, Dietetic Intern.
Why do people read nutrition labels? What are the main things you look for when reading a nutrition label?
When grocery shopping, it’s difficult to keep in mind all the items you need to focus on when reading a food label. Use the sample Nutrition Facts Label to learn what to look for when choosing what to eat.
Nutrition Food Label Facts:
- Nutrition Facts Labels are required by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to be listed on most packaged foods and beverages.
- The label provides detailed information about a food’s nutrient content.
- Knowing how to read food labels is especially important if you have certain health conditions such as high blood pressure or high cholesterol.
- You can use the label compare two similar foods to decide what would be the healthier choice.
Nutrients to get more of:
These are very important for your health and you should aim for adequate amounts each day of these nutrients.
- Dietary fiber
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin C
Nutrients to get less of:
These nutrients are important, but you should only eat them in small amounts each day. These nutrients can increase your risk of certain diseases.
- Total fat
- Saturated fat
How do you know how much is a lot or a little of a nutrient? The % Daily Value is an easy way to check if a food is high or low in a particular nutrient. Just remember these two numbers:
- 5% or less is low
- 20% or more is high.
Do you have any other questions about reading Nutrition Facts Labels?