Food nutritional labels – read ’em and gasp!

Our success here may be determined in part with how much attention we pay to the fine print in food nutrition labels. (Photo by Ann Maniscalco)

How well (meaning completely) do we read labels? Some can be deceptive if we don’t check out the fine print. Here’s an example: “No sugar added 100% white grape peach juice”…then, on the back, this info is added: “contains 100% juice”.

No sugar added…100% juice…sounds great, right? Well, let’s look a little closer at the nutritional info – an 8-ounce serving contains 40 grams of sugar! How can that be?

No sugar is added because the juice itself is plenty sweet. By comparison, since 1 teaspoon of granulated sugar is 4 grams, this 8-ounce serving of 100% juice contains the equivalent of 10 teaspoons of the sweet stuff (or 3 Tablespoons and 1 teaspoon, which edges close to 1/4 cup). Would we consciously add that amount of sugar to our children’s beverage? Yet it can happen regularly if we aren’t attentive to label-reading.

Of course, this is one good reason – in addition to the wonderful fiber – that it’s better to eat our fruit instead of drinking it! Also, a cup of this juice contain 160 calories; a large peach or a huge handful of grapes has less than half this amount.

Have you read any interesting labels that caused a jaw-drop lately?

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Filed under calorie reduction, counting calories, food, healthy eating, healthy weight loss, label-reading, menu planning, nutrition data

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