Nutrition

Reading Food Labels – Let’s play a game!

Everyone likes games, right? Especially when you are guaranteed to WIN. Let’s play!

 

Of the two nutrition labels shown, which one would you choose for a snack and why?

label 1

 

Pause here and think about your answer (LEFT or RIGHT and WHY) before moving on…

 

 

 

 

Got it? OK, here are some comments from when I played this game on social media:

 

“Depends on activities but the one on the right has a ton of potassium and fat isn’t bad. If I need carbs I might think differently but I often don’t need as many carbs as a food has. Plus the carbs are from sugar on the left…”

 

“Probably the one on the right for nutritional completeness (and I have enough fat macros to handle it). However…if I just need quick carbs between workouts, the snack on the left is probably a good option.

 

“I would pick the one on the right because of the protein and potassium. The other seems like empty calories and too much sugar.”

 

Does your answer sound like these? Read on…

 

 

The product on the left is an apple. I would hope that most of us agree that this is a healthy food, or can be a part of a healthy lifestyle.

 

The product on the right is a snack-sized Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup. 1 cup size. Half a normal package. I would hope that most of would agree that this would fall into the “treat” category in a healthy lifestyle, and not something to eat on a regular basis (if one is trying to be healthy overall.)

labels final

 

I’m not bashing anyone’s answers or anyone’s personal choices. I just wanted to point out that it’s hard to tell if something is “healthy” by just reading the NUTRITION FACTS. The INGREDIENTS LIST is the most important piece of information about a food/product, in my opinion.

 

The amount of fat, protein, carbs, and even calories IS NOT AS IMPORTANT as where those macros come from (the ingredients).

 

The ingredients in an apple are: apple. Single ingredient, whole food. Grown not made. Yes, it has sugar grams but no one set that apple down and injected it with white table sugar. Sugar just exists in an apple in a natural, unprocessed form. Our bodies were designed to process this type of sugar naturally.

 

However, the ingredients in the Reese’s are various. Sugar appears in one form or another, 4 times! In other words, there is a LOT of ADDED sugar. Someone intentionally put processed, refined sugar in that product. Our bodies process that sugar differently than the sugar from the apple.

 

This is part of what we are teaching in 90/10 Nutrition. Healthy eating is about INGREDIENTS first. If you want more info about our system of reading ingredients and how to implement a healthy eating lifestyle you can actually sustain forever, please reach out to me directly or check out the free nutrition downloads (including a 40 minute nutrition class I taught for my employer) in the shop tab on my website. 

 

If you are still reading, you won! You have learned a super important first step in healthy eating. Congratulations! I sincerely hope you will implement what you have learned here and see for yourself how it can improve your health and help you feel amazing! 

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