Body and Soul and the Blues Community Challenge: Reading food labels

In the second installment of our Body and Soul and the Blues Community Challenge video series, we take challenge participants through tips and tricks on proper label reading while grocery shopping. Reading food labels can be confusing. Some key points to remember include paying attention to ingredients, serving sizes and servings per container.

Reading labels is important, as being informed about what you put into your body will help you to make better, healthier choices. Grace Derocha, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan Dietitian, helps Tenisa Frye, and her son Darnell better understand the nutrition label by taking them to the Meijer bread aisle.

For example, Derocha explains that the fewer number of ingredients a label has, the healthier the food. The first ingredient listed is the highest quantity. Next, barring any dietary restrictions, you should note the fat, sodium, protein, fiber, and carbohydrates in the food.

The biggest issue individuals face is portion size. For example, if the serving size is one piece of bread, you have to double the numbers when eating a sandwich (two pieces of bread). Derocha notes that another tip is to measure your food when you have the resources to do so. This provides an easier way to envision what particular portions look like.

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