The Fit Facility: How To Read Food Labels
How To Read Food Labels
If you're just beginning your nutritional journey to *insert your fitness goals here*, you're going to need to know how to read the "nutritional facts" or "supplement facts" on the back of food products. Now I know these labels can look like hieroglyphics to the untrained eye, however this will be a crash course lesson on how to read labels to get you making the best possible choices at the grocery!
This food label is from a popular brand of soup sold at any grocery store. It serves as a great example to note the difference between "serving size" and "servings per container". If you only learn one thing from this post, this needs to be it. If you look at the section labeled "A", you'll see that the "serving size" is only one cup *NOT THE ENTIRE CAN OF SOUP*. Directly under this you'll see the "servings per container" is about 2. This means that the entire can of soup is equal to two servings. Since the entire can of soup is equal to two servings, and you ate the entire can of soup (like I know you do), you have to multiple the "amount per serving" by 2. The "amount per serving" can be found in section "B".
It's easy to overlook "servings per container" and think that the entire bag or can equals only one serving. This is where many people accidentally over eat. It's very easy to think you are having a can of soup that only has only 180 calories. In reality, the entire can has 360.
Sections "C" and "D" describe the many macro nutrients that make up the"amount per serving". Depending on your nutritional goals, and basic arithmetic skills, you should be able to figure this out easily.
I believe it's important to note that all food label's % Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. This means that if you're just average on all accounts, and just wish to maintain your current weight, you may get some value from these percentages. If you're trying to gain/lose weight, I wouldn't pay too much attention to these.