The BEST Tips for Reading Food Labels

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Sharing the BEST tips for reading food labels. Making it easier to choose good options when navigating the grocery store.

The BEST tips for reading food labels.

When it comes to grocery shopping, I recommend going to the store after you’ve finished meal planning for the week, with a grocery list in hand. This not only saves time and money, but also stress. Take note of the best time to visit your local grocery store as well. I tend to go grocery shopping Thursday evenings, as the store tends to be less busy and shelves are stocked earlier that day.

Sharing the BEST Tips for Reading Food Labels

Front of the Package Claims

When it comes to the claims on the front of the package, many of them can be deceiving. To save both time and confusion, turn the package over and begin reviewing the nutrition facts and ingredient lists.

Tips for Reviewing Nutrition Facts

When I first began my health journey, I was studying to become a dietitian in undergrad. To begin my day, I would consume a flavored coffee from a local coffee shop paired with a breakfast sandwich or a scone. It wasn’t until I began using a food journal that I realized I was consuming over 80-100 grams of added sugars per day, with most of that sugar coming from my breakfast choice. For reference, staying under 25 grams of added sugars per day is recommended. Once I began reducing my added sugar consumption, my headaches went away, joint and teeth pain began to diminish, and I had more energy to get through those busy days.

Once I realized how much sugar was present in many of the foods I was consuming, I began studying the back of food labels. This is when I discovered some of my favorite brands with clean labels that also came with more protein and fiber, and less added sugars and sodium.

When it comes to reading food labels, always review the serving size first. Some brands can be tricky with this area! Next, follow the tips listed below to select the best option.

What to Limit/Stay Away From

The less saturated fats, sodium, and added sugars we consume per day, the less inflammation we will have within our system. As we lower inflammation, we will experience less headaches, stomach aches, joint pain, and cavities, all while reducing our risk of developing chronic diseases such as obesity, diabetes, and heart disease, to name a few.

What to Look For

Reviewing Ingredient Lists

When it comes to purchasing packaged foods, reviewing the ingredient list is where I spend most of my time. Avoiding packaged foods that contain inflammatory vegetable oils (including but not limited to canola oil, sunflower oil, safflower oil, corn oil, soybean oil, palm oil), artificial colors, preservatives, artificial sweeteners, natural flavors, sodium nitrites, MSG (monosodium glutamate), xanthan gum, carrageenan, and other additives, is beneficial to overall health. Not all ingredients are created equally. Avoid manufactured and lab created ingredients and instead, look for packaged foods that contain natural ingredients; ones you know and understand.

The less ingredients, the better! Another rule of thumb – if you don’t know what many of the ingredients are, the packaged food is likely heavily processed. Spend time looking for a healthier alternative. For example, if you love doritos, swap for nacho chips – compare the two ingredient lists. You can immediately tell the second option is the better choice!

When feeding my body with clean ingredients, I feel good, have more energy, more mental clarity, and less food cravings. Not to mention, home cooked meals taste better with high quality ingredients

Once you implement reading food labels and ingredient lists when grocery shopping, you will find brands that become your go-to, making grocery shopping less stressful and faster to do. Have any questions regarding my tips for reading food labels? Comment below!

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Abigail Jean introduction.
Hello! I’m Abigail Jean, an admirer of health, wellness, food, and nature. I created this blog to share my admirations with other enthusiasts such as you!
I will provide you with the tools you need to create a healthy and happy lifestyle that is both realistic and sustainable. Thank you for visiting Abigail Jean, I look forward to sharing more with you!
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