In this day and age we are inundated with food choices.
It can be really hard to know what is good or bad for us. Research is always coming out with the next fad diet or miracle weight loss product. Therefore it is really important that you have the knowledge to be able to make decisions on your own. By learning to read nutrition labels. It’s actually really simple. Once you learn you’ll be amazed and surprised at some of your current food choices and I bet you ditch them pretty quickly.
I’ve mentioned in last weeks blog that I’m big on brand swaps, ie, swap this brand of yoghurt for that one. In that one swap you might cut out 10g of fat and 4 tsp of sugar. Who wouldn’t want to cut down on foods that are bad for us? This is what reading labels is all about for your average person. It can but doesn’t have to be about weight loss. It’s about making the correct food choices to make you, your family but especially your kids a healthier unit. I guarantee you will lose weight anyway without even trying.
Nutrition labels come standard here in Australia to help let you make the best informed decision. All packaged food products must have a column for per serve as well as a column per 100g. It is this 100g column we use to compare products. You don’t want to use the per serve as not all serves are created equal, making it impossible to compare numbers. Lets use yoghurt for my example today as it is a food that can vary so much brand to brand. From absolute, terrible, sugary, poison to great tasting, good for you yoghurt.
The first thing I look at is serving size. In an individual sized yoghurt container. Now we all look at these containers and chow down without giving it a second thought. It is wise to look at serving size because would you believe that nutritionally, certain brands, these small containers are classed as 2 serves. Bullshit!!! Who do you think I am to eat that small a serve? Even a 3 year old child eats more than that. Trust me, I’ve seen my little nephew eat. I want the most food I can have for the same calories etc. Be careful of serving sizes. Not all serves are created equal. Look before you eat.
Total fat value can include good and bad fats. Saturated Fat is more the row you want to be concerned with. Try and keep this as low as possible. Total fat may be 10g of fat but saturated fat is 8g. Thats still pretty high and means most of the food is bad fat. If total fat was 15g and saturated fat is 1g, then you know that it would mostly be made up of good fats making the food a better choice.
The same works for total carbohydrates and sugar. If the total carbs are 30g and sugar is 27g, then it is a sugar laden piece of crap and you should avoid it. The lower the sugar the healthier and smarter choice.
Now because myself and most of my clients follow a high protein diet, I want that protein value to be nice and high. I’ll always choose the higher protein brand as long as sugars and fats are good numbers too.
It can be hard and time consuming to go through the supermarket and compare brands. But I guarantee your body and organs will be thanking you.
Make life easier and come and see me for a 7 day trial to talk more about your nutrition, I’ve already done the hard comparison investigation work. My clients get it in the form of an eating plan and recipes. Let me help you and your family get healthier today.