Let’s say you’re in a grocery store and you are looking at the label on a can of peaches. Usually after about 15 seconds you just put the can back without getting the information you’re looking for. This is because, to the general public the standard nutrition label is confusing , plus the deluge of misinformation, relating to sugars, carbohydrates, good fats, bad fats, proteins and calories that we see in the media just adds to the confusion. Hopefully this blog will make things more clear.
The first two lines on a standard label refer to serving size and servings per container. These are relatively easy to understand in most cases. It usually requires just a little bit of math.
The next line refers to calories. If you’re trying to reduce body fat these first three lines are all you need to be concerned with. Let me explain.
We all know what the worst or most unhealthy foods are. These include anything processed or fried, greasy, made primarily of white processed flour and in general any desserts and any sugary foods or liquids.
If you are on a healthy diet that includes mostly whole foods, fruits, vegetables, lean meats, nuts, berries, beans and seeds and is low-sodium and contains adequate fiber you do not need to be concerned with everything below the “calories” line on the label.
This is because you are not consuming unhealthy choices and everything below the calories line (the 2 bottom sections) relates to whether the food item is a healthy choice or not.
I’m trying to provide a way that you can look at a label and quickly get the information you need to determine whether or not you should eat it and if so in what amount.
One less thing to worry about because now, if you’re primary concern is reducing body fat, you need not be concerned with anything below these first three lines. Losing or adding body fat is purely a function of calories in and calories out as I discussed in earlier blogs.
I have included a visual to the right that demonstrates the information in this blog. Again, if you’re primary concern is losing or controlling body fat and you are currently consuming a healthy diet, then the bottom two sections are not important as they are X’ed out. This, as I said earlier will make getting the information you need from a nutrition label much quicker and easier.