Decoding Food Labels: Essentials to Consider


    In recent years, the focus has been on consuming healthy foods that are 100% “real ingredients”. Taking advantage of this trend, many products are labeled healthy even though they are processed and made from refined ingredients.

    So how do you make sure you’re consuming quality foods? Experts stress the need to read the ingredients to tell the difference between what is claimed to be healthy and what is actually healthy.

    Ayurvedic practitioner Dr Varalakshmi Yanamandra recently took to Instagram to share such examples.

    “Just because something looks healthy doesn’t mean it’s healthy. Businesses are using smart marketing tricks to sell their products, ”she said in an Instagram post.

    Here is a list!

    Low fat

    What you think: It is healthy and helps you lose weight.

    What it actually means: Low in fat, but full of processed sugar to make it tasty.

    Instead of: Check the sugar content and additives before buying.


    What you think: Full of whole grains and fiber.

    What it actually means: It contains more than three grains which can be refined or whole grain.

    Instead of: Look for 100 percent whole grain / whole wheat.

    No added sugar

    What you think: Contains no sugar and is low in carbohydrates.

    What it actually means: Contains naturally sourced sugar or contains artificial sweeteners.

    Instead of: Look for artificial sweeteners and sugar content on the packaging.

    Made with real fruit

    What you think: Contains real fruit and is healthy.

    What it actually means: May have used part of the fruit during processing.

    Instead of: Buy foods with labels that are 100 percent real fruit.

    Zero trans fat

    What you think: Contains no trans / heart healthy fats.

    What it actually means: May contain 0.5 percent trans fat or have used other names for it.

    Instead of: Look for partially hydrogenated fats. Peanut butter, margarine are common examples.

    Rich in protein

    Look for terms and ingredients when reading food labels. (Source: Archives express)

    What you think: Full of protein to build muscle.

    What it actually means: Contains protein from all sources, which may not be 100% natural.

    Instead of: Get protein from whole foods or natural foods that naturally increase intake.