Monday, February 27, 2012

How to Read a Nutrition Label

The world we live in now is very different. We are constantly exposed to pollution, to the chemicals that is in our food, the bad effects of stress in our body, and a whole lot more. That is why it is important that we make a conscious effort to start living healthy.

We can do this with a simple change in our lifestyle, by staying away from bad vices like smoking and drinking, doing regular exercise, getting enough sleep and rest and more.

Changing our diet can also contribute a lot to our health. Our meal should contain healthy foods that make up a balanced diet. One way of achieving this is by being aware of the contents of the food that we take everyday. This information is readily available in the Nutritional Label of the product. But do we all understand what this information mean?

Here are some information that can help you decipher the data contain in nutritional label:

1. Serving Size and Number of Servings. When looking at the Nutrition Facts of any product, these two measures should be the first one to be checked. The serving size is often in units of cups or containers followed by the metric measurement of grams or oz. It is important to check this information to know how big the serving is per package. This is important for those who are watching their diet so they can lessen their calorie, fat or sugar intake.

2. Calories from Fat. Calorie is the measure of the energy that we get per serving of a product. The Calories from fat measurement will tell us how many of that calorie is from fat. To achieve a healthy and balance diet, we would want our food to contain less than 30% of calorie from fat.

3. Fat. When checking in the Fat content in a nutritional label, we have to take into account both the good fat (unsaturated fat) and the bad fat (saturated and trans fat). Some products may have high fat content but if we look closely, it is good fat after all like in the case of peanuts, which has high unsaturated.

4. Cholesterol and Sodium. Since we live a very busy lifestyle nowadays, most of our diet constitute processed foods, which is high in cholesterol and sodium. Too much cholesterol and sodium is bad especially for someone who has high blood pressure and cholesterol level. So it is important to monitor our sodium and cholesterol intake to be within he recommended daily amount.

5. Total Carbohydrates. The total carbohydrates that you find in nutritional label consist of Fiber and Sugar. To eat healthy, it is recommended that we get only 10% or less of our daily dose of calorie from sugar. As for fiber, it is best if we consume 25-30 grams of fiber per day because it helps in slowing digestion to control our blood sugar level.

Eating healthy is a choice. If you are armed with information like the bad effects of sodium ad cholesterol, then you will be more motivated to eat healthier foods. As the cliché goes, knowledge is power. It can be overwhelming at first reading through all the information contained in these nutritional labels but you will get used to it in time especially if these information will help you make healthier food choices.

Author’s Bio: Abie is a professional blogger who writes on various topics like Health & Fitness, Technology, SEO, Parenting and more. Her latest project is as a content writer for the site Personalised T, which offers professional t-shirt printing.


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