Advice on Choosing Health Food and Healthy Foods - and
Reading Nutrition Labels   
by Chris Robertson
yogurt. It hit supermarket shelves in the early seventies, though it had been available
before that in health food stores and restaurants. Real yogurt has two ingredients:
milk (whole, skim or low fat) and live yogurt cultures. That's health food - calcium,
vitamin D, vitamin A, protein. Next time you're at the supermarket, take a look at the
dairy case. You'll find row after row of hyper-sweetened brightly colored rainbow
swirled and candy-sprinkled yogurt packaged in ways that appeal to our littlest
consumers - children. Millions of parents buy the enticing packages, secure that
because it's yogurt, they're buying food that's healthy for their children.

One look at the label, though, and it's clear that these kiddy yogurts (as well as most
of the yogurt that's marketed to adults) are a far cry from heath food. Some of the
most popular yogurts for children contain anywhere from 3 to 10 added teaspoons
of sugar. Considering how many teaspoons of yogurt are in a single serving, you
might as well hand your child the sugar bowl. In addition, most yogurts include
"natural" ingredients that have little to do with health food. Ingredients like pectin (to
thicken yogurt), carrageenan (a seafood extract that gives some yogurts their body,
and annatto (for color) add little nutritionally to yogurt. They're in the mix to serve
one main purpose: to help yogurt survive its trip from the factory to your table.

You'll find the same situation with other foods that originally made their debut as
health foods in the seventies. Granola has become granola bars with chocolate chips
and gooey caramel. Whole wheat flour is bleached and denuded of its flavorful
kernels. Sunflower seeds are roasted in oil and salted. Even brown rice comes in the
instant variety.

Healthy food not health food

The secret to feeding your family (and yourself) a healthful diet of healthy food is to
read the labels. The United States Food & Drug Administration has laid out strict
guidelines for nutritional labeling of all food products. The nutrition label will tell you all
you need to know to choose real health foods. Some things to keep in mind when
reading nutrition labels for health foods:

* In the ingredient's portion of the nutrition label, ingredients are listed in order by
amount. The ingredient that's listed first is the main ingredient, followed by the next
largest amount, etc.

* The nutrition facts label must list each of the required nutrients even if the food
provides 0% of the recommended daily value.

* The nutrition facts label must list what portion of the food's calories is derived from
fat, from sugar, from protein and from carbohydrates. It will also break down the fat
into saturated and unsaturated fat.

Reading labels on everything you feed your family is the best way to tell whether a
food is really a health food - or just masquerading as one.


About The Author

Chris Robertson is a published author of Majon International. Majon International is
one of the worlds MOST popular internet marketing and internet advertising
companies on the web. Visit their main business resource web site at:
To learn more about subjects like health food please visit the web site at:
For more information and informative related articles and links about this subject
matter and content, please visit Majon's Food directory:
.
Health food doesn't need a
definition, does it? We all know
what health food is it's yogurt
and granola, whole-grain cereal
and organically grown vegetables
and fruit. It's 100% natural, no
preservatives or dyes,
unadulterated, pure. When you
put all that together, you should
have healthy food, yet all too
often, what's marketed as health
food these days barely classifies
as food, let alone health food.

Take a look at one of our
favorite health food choices -
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These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The content on
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