Nutrition Fact Label

Most people have seen the nutrition facts labels that are found on most food products.

Useful information is found on these labels.

Here is a highlight of the information on the label:

  • Serving Size – The Nutrition Facts Label is based on one serving, but many packages contain more.  Look at the serving size and how many servings you are actually consuming.  If you double the servings you eat, you double the calories and nutrients as well.
  • Calories – This is the number of calories per serving and the calories from fat in each serving.  If the label indicates that 1 serving equals 3 cookies and 100 calories and you eat 6 cookies, you have eaten 2 servings and twice the number of calories and fat.
  • Total Fat, Cholesterol, Sodium, Potassium, Total Carbohydrates, and Protein -  Here you will find information about how much of each nutrient is found in the product.  Fats are shown as Total, Saturated and Trans fat.  Check out the amount of Saturated and Trans fat in the product and limit the amount of products with saturated and trans fat.  Carbohydrates are broken out into Dietary Fiber and Sugar.  Chose products that have Dietary Fiber as it is important for maintaining digestive functioning and reducing heart disease. 
  • Vitamins and other Nutrients are listed next.  Use the label to find foods that have nutrients that promote good health and protect you from disease, such as Vitamin A and C, Calcium and Iron.
  • % Daily Value links nutrients in a serving to their contribution to your total daily diet.  The %DV is based on a 2,000 calorie diet and helps determine is a food is high or low in a nutrient.

Quick Tips

Using the % Daily Value (% DV) column: 5% DV or less is low, and 20% DV or more is high.
Keep these low: saturated and trans fats, cholesterol, and sodium.
Get more of these: potassium and fiber, vitamins A, C, and D, calcium, and iron.
Check the calories: 400 or more calories per serving of a single food item is high.

 

 

For more information regarding the nutrient facts label, go to

www.fda.gov/Food/LabelingNutrition

For more useful tips regarding nutrient facts label, go to http://www.health.gov/dietaryguidelines/dga2005/healthieryou/html/tips_food_label.html