The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulates the information and appearance of all food labels. As you stroll down the aisles of the grocery store, you’ll notice that no matter what item you pick up, they have the same black and white box of information that details calorie information, serving size, fat content, and much more.
You want to find out if your diet is healthy, but the numbers and percentages can get confusing. I admit I don’t always read the labels myself. Check out the infographic below that breaks it all down.
Finding the Right Nutrients
Understanding food labels is important to ensure that you consume adequate amounts of the nutrients you need daily. Experts recommend that we get as many vitamins and minerals from food consumption as possible, as opposed to supplements. Look for foods that have high vitamin and mineral content, a good source of natural fiber that are low in trans fats, saturated fats, and added sugars.
Evaluating Your Daily Intake
It’s essential to remember that food labels note daily values according to a standard 2,000 per day diet. You may require more calories, or less, depending on your unique body and needs. The number of calories your body needs, depends on your body weight, level of activity, and more.
Additionally, various health conditions may lead to certain dietary restrictions. Diabetes, high blood pressure, prescription medications, pregnancy, age, and chronic illness are a few examples. To gain a better understanding of what your body needs it’s best to speak with your treating physician.
Your doctor may recommend that you cut back on certain things, such as sodium or fat. Or, they may recommend you increase your fiber or vitamin intake. Each of these things plays an essential role in determining what to look for on each food label at the grocery store.