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Sunday, March 13, 2011

Deciphering Food Labels

At this stage if you are beginning to come around to the Skinny Loves Food way of life you will have probably discovered that your food shopping is taking a little longer than before. Trust me, these extra few minutes in the aisles are well worth it.

However it is important to be aware that food producers and more so food marketeers use clever and even deceptive marketing tools to sell their product. They are not interested in your health and well-being, they are only interested in one thing - profit. They have the upper hand - we the consumer have entered into a  minefield. We are rushed, busy and anxious to get the job done. This is where they prey on our weakness. We glance at an array of products - see the all important  - LOW FAT, REDUCED FAT, LIGHT, REDUCED words and we are sold.

Whilst perusing this months Good Food Magazine I found this little article which I am now sharing with you to help you to demystify your weekly shopping trip. This piece explains the 3 key words used, what they actually mean and what to beware of.

Lite/light - this means the product must be at least 30% lower in a specific nutrient (e.g. fat) than the standard product.
However no reference is made to actually how much was in the original and to beware that alot of times to compensate for the  lower fat content and lack of flavour they increase the quantities of salt and sugar.

Reduced calorie/fat - this means that the product contains 25% less calories/fat than the standard product. It is again important to beware here that although it has less calories or fat it actually may not be low in calories or fat.

Low fat - this means the product must be no more than 3g of fat per 100g.  Any food with less than 3g of sat fat per 100g is normally a healthy food. I always find this a great rule of thumb when comparing varieties of product in the supermarket, particularly jars of sauces.

Hope this helps. Happy shopping .

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