Thursday, December 16, 2010

How to Read Foods Label

You can not measure every particle that passes through your lips, but it is a good idea to measure most foods and beverages until you feel the portion sizes.

If you are into bells and whistles, there are food scales that are pre-programmed with nutritional information, as well as a scale that would make the total run your daily food and nutrient intake for you. Only tool you really need, however, is simple and inexpensive gram scale, dry and liquid measuring cups, and the idea of reading food labels.

Among all the mentioned tools, reading food labels seem to be the most effective way to determine the exact type of food to be bought in supermarkets. It lets you make sensible food choices. Through the "Nutrition Facts" on certain items in the store, you can identify the number of serving sizes provided in the product.

With food labels, you can clearly understand the amount and type of nutrients provided in the item. Usually, contains information about saturated fat sodium, total fat, fiber, and cholesterol amount "per serving."

However, understanding and reading food labels can be very confusing. A typical consumer would definitely ask what the numbers mean and how it will affect her diet intake if ever she would follow the guidelines that religion functions as defined on food labels.

To further have a clear understanding and more comprehensive than the items listed in food labels, here is a list of things you need to know:

1. Serving size
These are the main items that you would see on food labels.

The number of servings contained in the food label refers to the quantity of food people usually consume. However, this does not mean that it reflects your own amount of food intake.

In addition, serving size determines the amount of nutrients entering the body. This means that if you will follow strictly what the portion size, you'll get the same amount of nutrients according to the serving size given in the label.

For example, if the serving size says one serving size is equal to 54 grams, that means you have to measure 54 grams and eat that and you just eat one serving. So to speak, the amount of nutrients contained in food labels is the same amount that has entered your body considering the fact that you had just eaten 54 grams.

However, if you've eaten everything, and the food label says that each packet is equivalent to 4 servings, you must calculate the amount of nutrients that have entered your body. This means that if the food label says 250 calories per serving, which means you have to multiply by four to get the amount of calories you have taken.

2. Nutrition
This refers to the list of available nutrients in a particular item. This is also where the nutritional claims of products based on the recommended daily dietary allowance are stated. Typically, the amount of nutrition is based on both diet 2500 calories and 2,000 recommended dietary allowances.

In order to understand the numerical value of each item, you must know that the "% daily value" that the food label indicates is actually based on how certain foods in accordance with the recommended dietary allowance for every day for 2,000 calories.

If in the event that you have purchased an item that has a dietary allowance different from the 2,000-calorie diet, you only need to divide the stipulated amount by 2,000 and you will be able to identify the "% daily value" for nutrition.

3. Material
This refers to the list of materials used to manufacture the product. The list is usually compiled from primary materials that have larger quantities by weight to the smallest amount. This means that the right amount of food, including the largest amount of primary material or item first and last minimum amount of materials.

4. Label claim
This refers to the kinds of nutritional claims of certain food items. For example, if an item says it is sodium-free, has less than 5 milligrams per serving or a low fat item actually contains 3 grams of fat or less.

Indeed, reading food labels can be very tedious and confusing. However, once you get the hang of it, it's easier for you to watch your diet because you can control the amount of food you take.