The label of a product contains information facilitated by the manufacturer and allows the consumer to decide whether to buy it or not.
There are certain factors that need to be valued in order to know if a food is healthy (or not). These are the ingredients and the nutritional information.
Should contain as mandatory items the following:
- Energy value
- Total fat and saturated fats
- Salt (or Sodium)
These above will help us decide if the product is suitable for us or not.
How to select a product at the supermarket? 🛒
For the selection of a product at the supermarket, follow this simple steps:
1. Don’t get carried away by the publicity, the colors, or the large letters. 🟠
But always pay attention to the fine print. The food industry plays with great advantage and uses its own techniques for you to buy exactly the product that interests them the most.
Tip: careful with references like light, zero…these products usually have high amounts of hidden sugar or artificial sweeteners in them.
2. The ingredients appear in order from highest to lowest amount. 📉
Meaning, if sugar is the first ingredient of that product, run away from it. Sometimes the percentage of that ingredient will be stated, but it’s not mandatory. And remember: the quality of the ingredients determines the quality of the product.
3. It is important to differentiate the added sugar from the one naturally found in the foods (called intrinsic sugar). 🧁
For example: any fruit contains fructose. Remember that sugar has many names…and you may not be aware of all of them.
Here you have a few: syrup, agave, molasses, brown sugar, fructose, maltose, lactose…and the list goes on and on.
4. In relation to fats, the quality (origin of the fat) is always greater than the quantity. 🧀
Avoid those foods with refined fats and/or hydrogenated in their composition.
5. Be careful with salt. 🧂
The food industry uses it in large amounts to increase the palatability of the foods.
6. Calories. 🔥
Before thinking about the caloric intake of the product, we have to evaluate where these calories come from. Are the ingredients good, high-quality and nutritious? If the answer is yes, the amount of calories is not that big of a deal.
To sum up: to know if a product is healthy, evaluate the list of ingredients.
On the other hand, be careful with low sugar products, 0% in fat or “natural”. Food industry likes to play around (a lot), so watch out. 👀