Bookmark Website  | Free Registration  | The Team
The Lounge  | Champions  | The Wire |  Schedule |  Audio  |  Arcade  |  The Top Ten  |  Historical  |  Email  |  Video

Food Labels: Fact or Fiction?


How often do you pick up items at the grocery and scan the labels? Do you understand them? Ever wonder if they are really accurate? Many consumers probably glance at them, but based on the current obesity rate today it seems as if people should pay more attention.

Selling food is a big business. Through clever marketing campaigns and tricky labeling, many companies are able to influence your feelings and buying decisions. However, food makers are required to follow guidelines set forth by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Such guidelines include listing health claims and noting the % of daily values per serving.

Health claims link a food or one of its components to a specific disease or health related condition. Classic examples include whole grain cereals advertising that they may lower cholesterol (General Mills) and more recently yogurt products (Yoplait) proclaiming that (3) servings of yogurt a day will help you burn more fat. Fortunately, these claims must be based on solid research. Moreover, only approved health claims may appear on foods that meet the set requirements.

What about daily values? Typically, the label reveals the % of daily value for total fat, saturated fat, total carbohydrates, dietary fiber and protein, which is based on consuming 2,000 calories per day. The daily value does make it easy to compare similar foods because the serving size is usually the same. The tricky part lies in discovering two critical pieces of information. First, the amount of calories required per day varies from person to person based on age and activity level. Second, it is necessary to determine if your serving size is smaller or larger than the serving size listed on the food label. Based on this information, consumers can begin to piece their own nutritional puzzle together.

However, be cautious as you can still be fooled by labels. For example, have you ever purchased fat free cooking spray? Many people assume it is fat free. The reality is that the serving size is so small (1/3 second spray or .25 grams) that it is virtually impossible to spray enough to coat a pan without exceeding the serving size by at least threefold. Another red flag may be the fact that there are 557 servings in one 6 ounce can. Suddenly, in a larger serving size, it is no longer fat free. Wow! Is that legal? Yes, simply because in the serving size listed the fat value is negligible. Ironically, the fat free product managed to add fat to your meal.

The bottom line is this: people should eat a balanced diet based on their activity level, age and caloric needs. Understanding all of this information simply serves as a roadmap to directing consumers to make more informed and healthier food choices.

References

Understanding Food Labels

American Dietetic Association

Brian Schiff, PT, CSCS, is a respected author, physical therapist and fitness expert. You can sign-up for his free online newsletter @ http://www.thefitnessedge.cc.

Copyright 2005 Brian Schiff


MORE RESOURCES:

The Independent

How 2 Nutrition Nuts came to be
The Independent
My goal and long-standing dream is to become a renowned dietitian who has changed the face of nutrition forever. The quote, “As you grow older, you will discover that you have two hands, one for helping yourself, the other for helping others” couldn't ...



Healthy Eats (blog)

Nutrition News: Nutrition Labels, GMO-Free Products and Organic Recalls
Healthy Eats (blog)
If a product has a front-of-pack nutrition label, people are significantly more likely to buy it, regardless of whether the label brings good news or bad about the nutritional value of the product, a study has found. According to researchers at the ...



Auburn Citizen

Cayuga County Senior Nutrition Program menus for Aug. 31-Sept. 4, 2015
Auburn Citizen
Menus are subject to change. The Cayuga County Senior Nutrition Program is held at noon Mondays through Fridays at seven nutrition sites in Cayuga County. Reservations should be made 24 hours in advance by calling: Boyle Center, (315) 253-1550; ...



Recipe for Health: Poblanos, shrimp elevate flavor, nutrition of quick, light soup
Memphis Commercial Appeal
It seems early to talk about soup recipes, but this one is very light and makes a good base for a simple evening meal or quick lunch. It's a bit like gazpacho, except it's served warm adds corn and shrimp. It's a great way to make use of zucchini ...



FDA's revised serving sizes on nutrition labels might backfire as endorsement
Tribune-Review
Nutrition and public health experts are buzzing about the labels, which are expected to show a more realistic one cup as a serving size for ice cream and 20 ounces or so of pop instead of eight ounces. On the surface, it's a great move. (Who wants to ...

and more »


CBS News

FTC shuts down Tempe nutritional beverage company for pyramid scheme
Phoenix Business Journal
The Federal Trade Commission said a Tempe-based energy-drink and nutritional beverage company has been temporarily shut down for operating a pyramid scheme that preyed on college students. Vemma Nutrition Co. allegedly promised young adults up ...
FTC: Vemma Nutrition temporarily shut down for running pyramid schemeCBS News
Feds shut down Vemma NutritionConsumerAffairs
FTC Affirms Filing Complaint Against MLM Company Vemma NutritionStreetInsider.com (blog)
Al Jazeera America -Natural Products INSIDER (blog)
all 135 news articles »


Headlines & Global News

FTC Shuts Down Vemma Nutrition For Running Pyramid Scheme Targeting Young Adults
Headlines & Global News
The FTC says that Vemma told recruits that they could make as much as $50,000 per week selling various products, including nutritional beverage Vemma, energy drink Verge and protein shake Bod-e. Recruits would be allegedly be able to earn that income ...
Vemma shut down by FTC: Nutrition company preyed on students with pyramid schemeExaminer.com
Tempe company, Vemma, accused of running illegal pyramid schemeABC15 Arizona

all 13 news articles »


Los Angeles Times

CDC gives schools good grades for nutrition, but asks: Where are the salad bars?
Los Angeles Times
Federal health authorities give American schools good grades for improving the nutritional quality of food served in their cafeterias — but there's still room for improvement, they said. A report released Thursday by the Centers for Disease Control ...
CDC: School meal programs are an important source of nutritionKRWG News22
CDC Researchers: School meal programs are an important source of nutritionDispatch Times
School meals become more nutritiousNews-Medical.net
CDA News -cleveland.com
all 60 news articles »


Global Market Study on Clinical Nutrition: Infant Nutrition Segment To Witness ...
MarketWatch
The report also includes benchmarking section which provides an insight on the revenue generated and presence of its offerings in the three clinical nutrition categories: infant nutrition, enteral nutrition, and parenteral nutrition of the companies ...
Parenteral Nutrition Market Segment Forecasts up to 2020Medgadget.com (blog)

all 7 news articles »


TPS nutrition benefits every child
Tahlequah Daily Press
Kerns said if a child in the district has a disability, determined by a doctor, and the disability prevents the child from eating the regular school meal, the child nutrition program will make a substitution prescribed by the doctor. “There is no extra ...


Google News


Advertisement



Section Site Map - Submit News - Feedback - Comments - Advertise with Us

Copyright 2006 Luminati Inc. All rights reserved.