Reading labels is a tricky business.
Consumers are more health-conscious than ever, so food manufacturers use misleading tricks to convince people to buy their products.
They often do this even when the food is highly processed and unhealthy.
The regulations behind food labeling are complex, so it’s not surprising that the average consumer has a hard time understanding them.
This article briefly explains how to read food labels, and how to sort out the junk from the truly healthy foods.
Don’t Be Duped By The Claims on The Front
One of the best tips may be to completely ignore the labels on front of the packaging.
Front labels try to lure you into purchasing products by making health claims. Manufacturers want to make you believe that their product is healthier than other, similar options.
This has actually been studied. Research shows that adding health claims to front labels affects people’s choices. It makes them believe a product is healthier than the same product that doesn’t list health claims (1, 2, 3, 4).
Manufacturers are often dishonest in the way they use these labels. They tend to use health claims that are misleading, and in some cases downright false.
Examples include many high-sugar breakfast cereals, like “whole grain” Cocoa Puffs. Despite the label, these products are not healthy.
This makes it hard for consumers to choose healthy options without a thorough inspection of the ingredients list.
Bottom Line: Front labels are often used to lure people into buying products. However, most of these labels are highly misleading or downright false.
Look At The Ingredients List
Product ingredients are listed by quantity, from highest to lowest amount.
That means that the first listed ingredient is what the manufacturer used the most of.
A good rule of thumb is to scan the first three ingredients, because they are the largest part of what you’re eating.
If the first ingredients include refined grains, some sort of sugar or hydrogenated oils, you can be pretty sure that the product is unhealthy.
Instead, try to choose items that have whole foods listed as the first three ingredients.
Another good rule of thumb is if the ingredients list is longer than 2–3 lines, you can assume that the product is highly processed.
Bottom Line: Ingredients are listed by quantity, from highest to lowest. Try looking for products that list whole foods as the first three ingredients, and be skeptical of foods with long lists of ingredients.
Watch Out For Serving Sizes
The backs of nutrition labels state how many calories and nutrients are in a single serving of the product.
However, these serving sizes are often much smaller portions than people generally eat in one sitting.
For example, one serving may be half a can of soda, a quarter of a cookie, half a chocolate bar or a single biscuit.
In this way, manufacturers try to deceive consumers into thinking that the food has fewer calories and less sugar than it actually does.
Many people are completely unaware of this serving size scheme. They often assume that the entire container is a single serving, while it may actually consist of two, three or more servings.
If you’re interested in knowing the nutritional value of what you’re eating, you have to multiply the serving given on the back by the number of servings you consumed.
Bottom Line: Serving sizes listed on packaging may be misleading and unrealistic. Manufacturers often list a much smaller amount than most people eat as a single serving.
The Most Misleading Labeling Claims – and What They Actually Mean
Health claims on packaged food are designed to catch your attention and convince you that the product is healthy.
Here are some of the most common ones, and what they actually mean:
- Light: Light products are processed to reduce either calories or fat, and some products are simply watered down. Check carefully to see if anything has been added instead, like sugar.
- Multigrain: This sounds very healthy, but basically just means that there is more than one type of grain in the product. These are most likely refined grains, unless the product is marked as whole grain.
- Natural: This does not necessarily mean that the product resembles anything natural. It simply means that at some point the manufacturer had a natural source (for example, apples or rice) to work with.
- Organic: This label says very little about whether the product is healthy or not. For example, organic sugar is still sugar. Only certified organically grown products can be guaranteed to be organic.
- No added sugar: Some products are naturally high in sugar. The fact that they don’t have added sugar doesn’t mean they’re healthy. Unhealthy sugar substitutes may also have been added.
- Low-calorie: Low-calorie products have to contain 1/3 fewer calories than the same brand’s original product. However, one brand’s low-calorie version may contain similar calories as the original of another product.
- Low-fat: This label almost always means that the fat has been reduced at the cost of adding more sugar. Be very careful and read the ingredients listed on the back.
- Low-carb: Recently, low-carb diets have been linked with improved health. However, processed foods that are labeled low-carb are usually just processed junk foods, similar to processed low-fat junk foods.
- Made with whole grain: There is probably very little whole grain in the product. Check the ingredients list and see where the whole grain is placed. If it is not in the first 3 ingredients, then the amount is negligible.
- Fortified or enriched: This basically means that some nutrients have been added to the product. For example, vitamin D is often added to milk.
- Gluten-free: Gluten-free does not equal healthy. It simply means that the product doesn’t contain wheat, spelt, rye or barley. Many foods are gluten-free, but can be highly processed and loaded with unhealthy fats and sugar.
- Fruit-flavored: Many processed foods have a name that refers to a natural flavor, such as strawberry yogurt. However, there may not be any fruit in the product, only chemicals designed to taste like fruit.
- Zero trans fat: “Zero trans fat” actually means “less than 0.5 grams of trans fat per serving.” So if serving sizes are misleadingly small, the product can actually contain a lot of trans fat (5).
All of this being said, there are many truly healthy foods out there that actually areorganic, whole grain, natural, etc. However, just having these labels does not guarantee that the product is healthy.
Bottom Line: There are many words that people link with improved health. These are often used to mislead consumers into thinking that unhealthy processed food is actually good for you.
Everyone knows green smoothies are healthy, right? However…
Have you heard of a “red” smoothie? If not, check out this true story…
Different Names for Sugar
Sugar goes by countless names, many of which you may not recognize.
Food manufacturers use this to their advantage. They purposely add many different kinds of sugar to their products so they can hide the actual amount.
By doing this, they can list a “healthier” ingredient at the top, and mention sugar further down. So even though a product may be loaded with sugar, it doesn’t necessarily appear as one of the top 3 ingredients.
To avoid accidentally consuming a lot of sugar, it may be wise to look out for the following names of sugar in ingredient lists:
- Types of sugar: beet sugar, brown sugar, buttered sugar, cane sugar, caster sugar, coconut sugar, date sugar, golden sugar, invert sugar, muscovado sugar, organic raw sugar, raspadura sugar, evaporated cane juice and confectioner’s sugar.
- Types of syrup: carob syrup, golden syrup, high fructose corn syrup, honey, agave nectar, malt syrup, maple syrup, oat syrup, rice bran syrup and rice syrup.
- Other added sugars: barley malt, molasses, cane juice crystals, lactose, corn sweetener, crystalline fructose, dextran, malt powder, ethyl maltol, fructose, fruit juice concentrate, galactose, glucose, disaccharides, maltodextrin and maltose.
There are many more names for sugar, but these are the most common.
If you see any of these in the top spots on the ingredients lists, or several kinds throughout the list, then you can be sure that the product is high in added sugar.
Bottom Line: Sugar goes by many names in ingredient lists, many of which you may not recognize. These include cane sugar, invert sugar, corn sweetener, dextran, molasses, malt syrup, maltose and evaporated cane juice.
Always Choose Whole Foods Whenever Possible
Obviously, the best way to avoid being misled by these labels is to avoid processed foods altogether.
However, if you decide to buy packaged foods, it is necessary to sort out the junk from the higher quality products.
Keep in mind that whole food doesn’t need an ingredients list, because the whole food IS the ingredient.
Editors note: Click here to Find a Local Farmer
FREE BOOK DOWNLOAD (Limited Offer)
Do You Know Your Body’s Most Important Weight Loss Secret?
By J. Davis III
Tags: HEALING | HEALTHY FATS | REMEDIES
Recently, Doctor of Naturopathy, weight-loss expert and best-selling Amazon author Liz Swann Miller, creator of the Red Smoothie Detox Factor, revealed 2 of the secrets to easy, steady weight loss. Secrets the big food corporations do their best to hide from us.
Secret #1: Enjoy real food. Don’t fall for the lie that you have to deprive yourself to lose weight.
Secret #2: stop eating out. You will automatically eat less without even noticing.
Then start detoxing your body with tasty, nourishing smoothies that are just as easy on your wallet as they are easy to make.
Because a single day of enjoying Liz’ smoothies demonstrated the radical power of her superfood-packed red smoothies to make me feel incredibly good.
Now prepare yourself for one of the biggest weight loss secrets there is. A secret that, when you use it properly, can transform your body and your health.
You probably know most of us eat too much processed food. What you may not know is that it’s full of toxic chemicals and substandard, dirt-cheap ingredients designed to make you eat more…and force you to gain weight.
Here’s how it works...
“That stuff is just a lot of calories your body can’t use,” Liz told me, “Some are poison. And all these foods are stripped of the anti-oxidants and anti-inflammatories that help your body detox. The result? Your body expends huge amounts of calories to eliminate some toxins—the rest, it stores in your fat to protect you. This is why most people are hungry all the time. They’re not getting energy they need.”
“So… what’s going on with me? Why am I losing weight but not going hungry?”
Liz paused, then dropped the bombshell.
Your body is designed to burn fat. You just have to let it.
“What? I thought we were designed to store fat?!?” We were Skyping and I was practically shouting. Then I heard Liz say…
What good is a fat reserve if you can’t burn it?
Liz continued: “You’re drinking smoothies packed with phytonutrients, anti-oxidants and anti-inflammatories that pull toxins out of you like a tractor beam. Allowing your body to burn those toxin-filled fat stores… and releasing tremendous amounts of stored energy.”
So that’s why I’m losing weight without going hungry.
Watch Liz’ free presentation. It’s packed with revolutionary weight loss information—information that works. Because it’s based on how nature works.
Click the button below only if you want to wear smaller clothes, breathe easier, move more freely and just plain feel better.
Because when you click here to watch Liz’ life-changing presentation, you’ll learn
- Which calories help you lose weight…and which ones help you gain it…
- The “diet” foods…some of them vegetables…that lead to weight gain and diabetes…
- The “low-fat” foods that can dramatically increase your risk of cancer.
- And the superfoods that rescue your body from this assault by detoxing you…
Revitalizing your metabolism so you can
Shed pounds as well as toxins, renew your body and reset your internal clock by up to 7 years.
Because until now, the Red Smoothie Detox Factor has been available only to Liz’ private clients. But now that she’s perfected it to work for almost everyone, almost every time, Liz is sharing it with rest of us so we can feel better and look better.
Get Red Smoothie Detox Factor before the price goes back up.
Because Liz offers a ridiculously good guarantee. You have 60 days to decide you love the Red Smoothie Detox Factor. If you don’t love it—for any reason, or even no reason at all —Liz will refund your money. 100%. No questions asked.
Natural Diabetes Treatment Works Better Than Prescription Drugs *PROOF*
By Richard Neal
Tags: HEALING | REMEDIES | PREVENTION
According the latest statistics, diagnosed and undiagnosed diabetes in the United States is reaching epidemic levels:
Total: 29.1 million people or 9.3% of the population have diabetes.
Diagnosed: 21.0 million people.
Undiagnosed: 8.1 million people (27.8% of people with diabetes are undiagnosed).
Source: CDC Website
Drugs Treat Symptoms, Not Disease
Pharmaceutical companies have been trying to shut these doctors down simply for revealing the truth about diabetes.
Scientific studies have proven that type 2 diabetes can be reversed naturally - but this information has been hidden and suppressed for decades.
Diabetics can normalize blood sugar, and be taken off all medication and insulin injections completely naturally.
Doctors at the International Council for Truth in Medicine are revealing the truth about diabetes in a shocking new online presentation.
In 3 Weeks, 71% Type 2 Diabetics Were Taken off ALL Medication
96% of patients were able to stop all insulin injections and 81% achieved complete relief of painful neuropathy.
Groundbreaking research published by the University of Kentucky, University of California and Newscastle University prove that type 2 diabetes CAN be reversed.
Blood sugar normalizes... neuropathy pain goes away...
Doctors at the International Council for Truth in Medicine have perfected these techniques and helped tens of thousands of their patients end the need for medication and insulin injections 100% naturally.
You don't have to suffer anymore, Learn the truth about your diabetes and stop this disease dead in its tracks right now.
Groundbreaking New Research
Doctors at the International Council for Truth in Medicine are revealing the truth about diabetes that has been suppressed for over 21 years.
Last year they helped over 17,542 type 2 diabetics end the need for prescription drugs, insulin injections and blood sugar monitoring.
This year they're on track to help over 30,000.
In just a few weeks, 96% of their patients are able to stop ALL diabetes medication and insulin injections.
No more neuropathy pain, pricking your finger, or the need for expensive medication.
Learn about this groundbreaking new research here:
#1 muscle that eliminates joint and back pain, anxiety and looking fat
By J. Davis III
Tags: HEALING | PREVENTION
I bet you can’t guess which muscle in your body is the #1 muscle that eliminates joint and back pain, anxiety and looking fat.
This “hidden survival muscle” in your body will boost your energy levels, immune system, sexual function, strength and athletic performance when unlocked.
If this “hidden” most powerful primal muscle is healthy, we are healthy.
d) Hip Flexors
Take the quiz above and see if you got the correct answer!
P.S. Make sure you check out the next page to get to know the 10 simple moves that will bring vitality back into your life!
==> Click here to discover which “hidden survival muscle” will help you boost your energy levels, immune system, sexual function, strength and athletic performance permanently!
More Health Resources:
- "Red" Smoothie Helps Alabama Girl Shed 80lbs!
- Thе Fastest Wау Tо Lose Weight In 4 Weeks
- #1 muscle that eliminates joint and back pain, anxiety and looking fat
- Your Birth Date + Name - Free Report
- The "Instant Switch" Law Of Attraction
- The 3 reasons you should NEVER eat wheat -- Yes, even "whole wheat"
- [PROOF] Reverse Diabetes with a “Pancreas Jumpstart”
- Why Some People LOOK Fat that Aren't
- Diabetes Destroyer System
- His wife REFUSED to let them amputate his legs!
- Unlock Your Hip Flexors
- Doctors Reversed Diabetes in Three Weeks