Skip to main content

5 Food Label Follies

The food label can be a useful tool in determining the nutritional value and overall safety of a food choice. However, it is very common for an individual to not fully understand the food label and miss the most important components. Don’t be fooled any longer!

 Folly #1 Nutrition Facts

 The grams of fat, carbohydrates, proteins, calories and serving size are not the most important part of the food label. This component of the food label does not take into account the quality of the nutrients and will commonly mislead the consumer. The recommended daily values do not take into account the age, gender, activity level or specific dietary needs a person may have.

Folly #2 Boisterous Claims

 We all know that most advertising claims are false or misleading; the boisterous food advertising campaigns can be the largest culprits. Cereals have been under investigation by the FDA for misleading health benefits such as “low in fat” or “low in cholesterol”. A consumer will look at these claims and forget to look at the type and quality of the nutrients on the ingredients list.

Folly #3 Low Fat Campaigns

A food product that is low in fat or low in carbohydrates does not necessarily make it a healthy food to consume. It is the type of fat and carbohydrate that will make it a good or bad dietary choice. Beware of misleading advertising.

Folly #4 Organic

 Beware of organic sections in your local grocery store! Being an organic food does not necessarily make it good for you. Examples may include organic sugar and potato chips.

Folly #5 Shrinking Serving Size

 Watch out for hidden ingredients and ingredients that you cannot pronounce.
 -Sugars are commonly hidden on the ingredient list of the product. If you see any ingredients ending in “ose”, it’s a sugar.
 - Monosodium Glutamate (MSG) is a powerful neurotoxin and has been found to damage the integrity of one’s immune system.
 - Artificial sweeteners such as Splenda, NutraSweet and Equal are common substitutions or additions that have no nutritional value and have been shown to be extremely toxic in clinical studies.
 -Hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oils are actually trans-fats. If the trans-fat has a quantity per serving of 500 mg or less it can boast “trans-fat free” on the label. You may notice that the serving size has conveniently shrunk over the years.

5 Tips To Super Shop

 #1 Focus on the actual ingredients versus the percent of daily values.
 #2 Look for a minimum number of ingredients—the less the better.
 #3 Look for natural ingredients. Avoid ingredients you can’t read or pronounce because they are probably man made.
 #4 Buy more food that does not require a food label. Eat more fruits and vegetables.
 #5 Make a habit of checking the label on each item that you buy. It will quickly become a habit and won’t add any extra time to your trip to the store.


Dr. Cory Couillard is an international healthcare speaker and columnist for numerous newspapers, magazines, websites and publications throughout the world. He works in collaboration with the World Health Organization's goals of disease prevention and global healthcare education. Views do not necessarily reflect endorsement.

Email: drcorycouillard@gmail.com
Facebook: Dr Cory Couillard
Twitter: DrCoryCouillard

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Can we now cure HIV in newborns?

Doctors are reporting that a child born with HIV that was put on an unusually aggressive treatment regimen has been functionally cured of the infection. Using the most sensitive HIV testing available, they were able to find only trace amounts of HIV "particles" but no virus capable of replicating, the research team reported.

"If there is a trial that shows this can happen again, then this will be very important," said Dr. Karin Nielsen, a pediatrician who specializes in infectious diseases at UCLA's David Geffen School of Medicine. "You'll be able to treat people very intensively and reverse the disease."

The news provides no answers for adults living with HIV but it can be a landmark victory in the health of future generations. Every year, 300,000 to 400,000 babies are born infected with HIV according to Dr. Anthony Fauci, head of the National Institute for Allergies and Infectious Diseases.

The treatment consisted of giving the newborn a three-drug…

Non-communicable diseases ravaging the poorest

The convergence of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) and infectious diseases (IDs) in low- and middle-income countries presents major challenges to the world’s poorest and most neglected groups of people. NCDs continue to escalate and cause hundreds of billions of dollars of loss annually despite aggressive lifestyle campaigns.

A NCD is a medical condition or disease that is non-infectious and non-transmissible amongst people. NCDs may be chronic diseases of long duration and slow progression, or they may result in more rapid death such as some types stroke and heart attacks. Unknowingly to most, NCDs also include autoimmune diseases, many cancers, asthma, diabetes, chronic kidney disease and many more.

Most Low- to middle income countries has dual disease burdens of NCDs and IDs including tuberculosis, HIV/AIDS and parasitic diseases. Unfortunately, experts, institutions and policies that support prevention and control of these two overarching disease categories have very limited int…

Strong health systems critical in addressing health threats in the African Region

Brazzaville, 8 April 2015 – The World Health Organization (WHO) Regional Director for Africa, Dr Matshidiso Moeti has called on the Diplomatic Corps accredited to the Republic of Congo to advocate with their national governments to strengthen health systems to be able to address the health challenges facing the African Region. She briefed the diplomats about the on-going Ebola epidemic in West Africa, current and emerging health threats in the WHO African Region, progress towards the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), and the strategic priorities for WHO’s work in the Region for 2015-2020. The Regional Director underscored the importance of strong national health systems to be able to withstand epidemics and emergencies while delivering essential health services to people who need them most. Dr Moeti pointed out that the Ebola epidemic has had devastating impacts on families, livelihoods, security, health workforce, service delivery and overall socioeconomic development of the seve…