- March 14, 2007 at 2:02 am #239024
Food labeling offers a great deal of information on most packaged
Based on an average portion size. Similar food products have similar
serving sizes to make comparison between products easier.
Amounts per serving:
The Calories and the calories from fat are listed. These numbers
will help consumers make decisions about fat intake. The list of
nutrients (total fat, saturated fat, cholesterol , sodium, total
carbohydrate , dietary fiber , sugars , protein ) includes those
most important to the health of today’s consumer. The amount, in
grams (g) or milligrams (mg), per serving of these nutrients is
listed to their immediate right.
Vitamins and minerals:
Only 2 vitamins (A and C) and 2 minerals (calcium and iron) are
required on the food label. Food companies can voluntarily list
other vitamins and minerals in the food. When vitamins or minerals
are added, or when a vitamin or mineral claim is made, those
nutrients must be listed on the nutrition label.
Percent daily value:
The amounts of vitamins and minerals are listed as a Percent Daily
Value on the nutrition label. The Percent Daily Value for vitamins
and minerals gives a general idea of how much of a vitamin or
mineral a serving contributes to the total daily diet. For example,
if the Percent Daily Value for vitamin C of all the foods you eat in
a day adds up to 100%, your diet meets the recommendation for
The U. S. government requires food labels on most packaged foods.
The label offers complete, useful and accurate nutrition
information. The government encourages food manufacturers to improve
the quality of their products and help the consumer make healthier
food choices. They provide a consistent format to help you directly
compare the nutritional content of various foods. Food labels have
the title “Nutrition Facts.”
The Daily Values section shows how a food fits into the overall
daily diet. The value of the nutrient is given in percentages. The
Percent Daily Value gives the food’s nutritional content based on a
2,000-calorie diet. You can use this to quickly compare foods and
see how the amount of a nutrient in a serving of food fits into a
For example, a food that has 13 grams of fat with a Percent Daily
Value of 20% means that 13 grams of fat is 20%, or one-fifth, of the
total daily fat recommended for a person who eats 2,000 calories per
Near the bottom of the label you will see a list of 6 nutrients and
the recommended daily intakes. The daily values are listed for 2,000
and for 2,500 calories. Your daily values may be higher or lower
depending of your calorie needs.
The amounts of the first 4 nutrients — total fat, saturated fat,
cholesterol, sodium — are maximum amounts. That is why the list
says “less than” before the number. The amounts of total
carbohydrate and dietary fiber are minimum amounts. This is exactly
the same on all food labels that carry it. You can use it as a
NUTRIENT CONTENT CLAIMS
A nutrient content claim is a word or phrase on a food package that
makes a comment about the nutritional value of the food. The claim
will mean the same for every product. The following are some
approved nutrient claims.
40 calories or less per serving
At least 25% fewer calories per serving when compared with a similar
One-third fewer calories or 50% less fat per serving; if more than
half the calories are from fat, fat content must be reduced by 50%
Less than 1/2 gram sugar per serving
At least 25% less sugar per serving when compared with a similar
Less than 1/2 gram fat per serving
100% fat free
Meets requirements for fat free
3 grams or less per serving
At least 25% less fat when compared with a similar food
Less than 2 milligrams cholesterol per serving and 2 grams or less
saturated fat per serving.
20 milligrams or less cholesterol per serving and 2 grams or less
saturated fat per serving
Less than 5 milligrams sodium per serving
Meets requirements for sodium-free
For the first time, you will see FDA approved and regulated health
claim phrases. A health claim is a food label message that describes
the relationship between a food or food component, such as fat,
calcium, or fiber, and a disease or health-related condition.
The government has authorized health claims for 7 diet and health
relationships that are backed by extensive scientific evidence.
1. Calcium and osteoporosis
2. Fiber-containing grain products, fruits, vegetables and cancer
3. Fruits, vegetables, and cancer
4. Fruits, vegetables, and grain products that contain fiber and
coronary heart disease
5. Fat and cancer
6. Saturated fat and cholesterol and coronary heart disease
7. Sodium and hypertension
An example of a valid health claim you may see on a high-fiber
cereal product food label would be: “Many factors affect cancer
risk; eating a diet low in fat and high in fiber may lower the risk
of this disease.”
For further information on specific health claims refer to the
information on diet and health.
Food manufacturers are required to list ingredients in descending
order by weight, from the most to the least. People with food
sensitivities can obtain useful information from the ingredient list
on the label.
The ingredient list will include, when appropriate:
FDA-approved color additives
Sources of protein hydrolysates
Caseinate as a milk derivative in foods that claim to be nondairy
(such as coffee whiteners)
Most manufacturers offer a toll-free number to answer questions
about specific food products and their ingredients.
FOODS EXEMPT FROM FOOD LABELING
Many foods do not have information on them. Some foods are exempt
from food labeling. These include:
Food service vendors (such as mall cookie vendors, sidewalk vendors,
and vending machines)
Ready-to-eat food prepared primarily on the site
Bulk food that is not resold
Food produced by small businesses
Plain coffee and tea
Other foods that contain no significant amounts of any nutrients
Stores may voluntarily list nutrients for many raw foods. The 20
most commonly eaten raw fruits and vegetables and seafood will
display nutrition information in the store. Nutrition labeling for
single-ingredient raw products, such as ground beef and chicken
breasts, is also voluntary.
A toll-free consumer hot line of the American Dietetics Association
National Center for Nutrition and Dietetics is available to answer
questions on the new food Labels. They operate between 10 AM and 5
PM Eastern time, Monday through Friday. The number is 1-800-366-1655.
- January 16, 2009 at 11:47 pm #410249
thanks for all of the great info hun!!!