Can Food Labels be Trusted?
After 4 years of university, I graduated with a Bachelor Degree in Business. One of my favourite courses was marketing and I especially enjoyed the subject of advertising. Zig Ziglar was a creative master and I learned all kinds of fun and interesting ways that companies market and package their products.
But some of their marketing tactics bordered on unethical. Did you know that the word “Light” spelled “Light” or “Lite” on a food label doesn’t necessarily mean it’s low in calories or fat? The label could be referring to its colour or even its texture.
“Made with” doesn’t naturally mean it’s a good source of the ingredient. All it means is that it contains at least a bit of the ingredient. But since the label isn’t defined by the FDA, we can’t be sure how much it actually contains.
It’s up to us, as the buyer, to read the nutritional panel for fat content and number of calories. And while you’re looking keep an eye on fiber, sugar, and sodium as well. We want high fiber and low sugar and sodium.
Also have a look at the ingredient list. Remember that the closer an item is to the beginning of the list, the more of it the food contains. And the fewer the ingredients, the less processed the food generally is.
To beat the confusion? Buy the majority of your products at the grocery store without labels at all, such as fresh fruits, vegetables and lean meats.