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Understanding Food Labels

Ingredients: The ingredient part of the label must contain EVERYTHING in the product you are purchasing.  It also is in order of the highest percentage of food.  In this product enriched flour is the biggest ingredient.  But don't let that fool you, there is not really anything on this label that an ND would recommend eating. 

Trans fats: The FDA allows a certain percentage of trans fat to be in a packaged product and still advertise "0 Trans Fat."  This means you need to know what to look for in the ingredient list.  Even if it says 0 trans fat you need to look for the word hydrogenated.  If it is there so are trans fats.  These are some of the fats that can increase heart disease. Avoid these products. The saturated fat in this product is also high and should be avoided.  

Fiber: Fiber is your friend, especially if you have diabetes. You will find more fiber in whole grains. Here you can see that the sugar is 10 grams per serving but fiber is only 1 gram.  That means that 9 grams of sugar are quickly available for absorption and will raise your blood sugar quickly. 1 teaspoon is 4 grams of sugar so this would be like eating 2 teaspoons of sugar, bad oils and nasty bleached flour with Roundup.  YUCK!

Protein: If you are eating packaged foods with whole grains you will notice that the protein will be higher per serving.  This is also good for slowing down absorption of sugar into the blood.  Whole grain treats are a better choice.

Serving size: This is one of the biggest things to remember.  Most people forget that a serving size isn't the entire can or box.  In America we are served portions that could equal 3 meals. One can of soup is typically 2 servings or more. So if you have a restricted calorie, sodium, sugar, protein or fat diet then you need to look at serving size when calculating how much you will be ingesting.

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