March 15, 2016

What's In Your Food? The Importance Of Food Labels

Food labels. Whether you like or hate them, they are pretty much a part of our every day life when faced with purchasing decisions.

It has been many years since I counted calories on anything, but I do rely on food labels to inform me of the ingredients used in packaged foods. From too much salt to too much sugar, or if something is high in saturdated fats, it really does get quite overwhelming to understand it all.

Research carried out by Data Label found that as much as 31% of people don't trust food labels and this is mostly down to information overload and that they can appear to be conflicting. I for one don't completely trust labels, but when in a foreign country, not being able to read food labels is a little unnerving.


The NHS has a good guide on food labels and the introduction of the traffic light rating by the Food Standard Agency has made understanding the labels easier. The more green on the label, the better it is for you.

I love my food. Weekend brunching at home like the first photo is pure indulgence and whilst I can't say I pay much attention to what's in it, I do try and stick with the following on a normal daily routine:

1) Eat 5-7 portions of fruit and vegetables a day. This can include 1 serving of juice, 1 serving of dried fruits and 1 serving of beans/pulses. Try and eat the colour of the rainbow, this ensures you get different vitamins and antioxidants
2) Calcium intake. In the form of milk, cheese and yoghurt
3) Eating wholegrain cereals like weetabix or porridge
4) Getting enough carbs. Carbs are not evil and absolutely essential. This usually makes up around 1/3 of my plate, be it rice/pasta/noodles/potatoes
5) Protein for lunch and dinner. This also makes up around 1/3 of my plate usually
6) Drink plenty of water
7) Avoid snacks and pre-packaged foods if possible, nothing beats wholesome home made food!    

If I eat too much salt, sugar of fat in the day or at the weekends, I try and counter balance this by eating more fruit and veg and being more active. As long as I stick to the mantra Everything in Moderation, I know I'm doing well.


Do you guys pay attention to food labels?


*This is a collaborative post. All thoughts and opinions are my own

2 comments

  1. I have tried in the past to look at food labels but I find them so confusing and not very clear. Often it would say per salt 2% per 25g serving for example but it's easier to just say how much salt is in the whole pack so I can roughly work it out in my head.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Mandy, it really can get confusing right?! Yes agree with you that it should just say the salt content for the whole pack, would be easier to calculate.

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