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The Key to Reading Food Labels Properly

Posted by Milan Rao on

In order for you to effectively experiment in your day to day eating and still choose nutritionally excellent foods, you must understand nutrition labels on packaging.

Quite often the companies that manufacture different foods will claim on the packaging that they are low fat or healthy, but the truth of the matter is that there are hidden dangers in there for people that are on different diets. Being able to read the labels can, therefore, make a huge difference in the potential success of somebody that is trying to lose weight.  


First, you must look at the serving size on the label because the nutritional information that is listed on there will tend to talk about a serving size that is smaller than  the overall size of the item you are looking at. This is important because a number of companies will mention a portion of say 30g and list the nutritional information for that amount, but they know most people will take double so, in actual fact, it is then nowhere near as healthy as you think.  


What you need to do is to look at the serving size and then, if you eat double, you must double those figures to see how healthy it actually is.  


Another key area to look at is when they discuss the percentage of the daily recommended amount that a portion covers as this can tell you a lot about what is in the product and how it can affect your diet plan.  


Yet again you need to look at the serving size along with this because if the serving size is 30g and it gives you 25% of your daily recommended allowance for salt and you take 60g, then you need to double this 25% in order to get a true reflection. Do also look to see if they mention how many calories per day this recommended amount is based on as the majority will be for 2000 calories, but you may be on less than that so you must calculate it accordingly.  


Finally it is worth looking at how to read the individual ingredients as they will tend to use terms such as Sodium instead of salt or they will talk about carbohydrates instead of just listing how much sugar is in it. The thinking here is that by using more professional names, then it will sound healthier and it may be an idea to look at the names on labels you have near you now and make a note of the terms used so you know if unsaturated fats are good or bad, how much vitamin B12 is good for you and that you understand what type of sugar they have put into the food and what appears in it naturally due to the ingredients.  


So that is how to read nutrition labels to help lose weight and there really is nothing complex about it as long as you just take your time to read things properly. By law they must have this information printed on there, so as long as you have an understanding of the amounts of different things you should eat for your diet plan, then you should find it that bit easier to go ahead and lose that weight.  

Let us know if you have any questions!

- Reborn Labs


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