How to Read a Food Nutrition Label

One of the most important things you can do for your own nutrition is to know what you’re eating. In recent years, food labels have become much more user friendly and you really can know exactly what you’re putting in your body.

Your relationship with food is very important. What you eat can help to give you energy, improve your immunity, and allow you to combat many diseases. But it can also do the opposite – leave you feeling weak and even cause disease.

But if you’ve never given your food much thought, reading food labels can be intimidating. There’s a lot of information there. Deciding which information is important and which isn’t can be challenging. Once you know the basics, though, you’ll read those labels with confidence.

Be Smart about Serving Size

Begin with looking at the serving size on the label. Sometimes people miss this part of the label and then have an inaccurate idea of what’s actually in the food. For example, if you have a can of soup and the label says it’s 2 servings, that means that the information on the label would be doubled if you ate the whole can.

Labels have gotten better in the recent past. For example, a can of soda used to be 1.5 or 2 servings. But now when you look at the label, one can of soda is a whole serving because most people will drink the entire thing. A 20 oz bottle, though, is more than 2 servings.

Calorie Breakdown

Once you know the serving size, you’re ready to move on to looking at the quality of the food you’re eating. The most obvious information you can get from your food label is about the breakdown of calories.

The label will tell you how many calories are in each serving. Calories are the measurement for how much energy it takes down to break down the food. The higher the calories, the longer it will take to break it down.

Your metabolism is the measure of how much energy you burn over a period of time. While we often think of exercising as burning calories, the effect of exercise is small compared to the total calories you burn.

When your heart beats, you breathe in and out, your body breaks down nutrients and makes new blood cells you’re burning calories. That’s why you need an average of around 2,000 calories in a day.

There are three basic biomolecules that your food can give you: proteins, carbohydrates, and fats. Food labels tell you exactly how much of each you’re getting in a serving of food. The label also tells you how many grams of that food you need in a typical diet.

Depending on the label, the following are the major categories you’ll find:

*· Total calories per serving

*· Grams of carbohydrates

*· Grams of fat

*· Milligrams of sodium

imal fats. These are solid at room temperature and are considered unhealthy fats. They contribute to high cholesterol, clogged arteries and can ultimately lead to heart disease, stroke, and other disorders.

Speaking of cholesterol, you can also find the amount of cholesterol in a serving of food on the label. Cholesterol amounts become important when you’re trying to eat a heart healthy diet. If you’re trying to lower cholesterol, you’ll want to pay attention to this part of the label.

Trans fats are a category of fats that come from altering the chemical structure of an unsaturated fat. They are also called hydrogenated fats because the process of taking a liquid unsaturated fat to a solid trans fat involves adding hydrogen atoms to the molecules.

For many years it was thought that trans fats were as healthy as unsaturated fats, but that has been disproved. In fact, trans fats are actually more harmful than saturated fats. Because of the bad press trans fats many food manufacturers are removing it from their products.

The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) now requires that trans fats are listed on food labels. It’s a good idea to avoid any food that has trans fats in it. These fats have no nutritional value and are in fact harmful for you.

Sodium Safety

Another nutrient that food labels provide information about is sodium. Sodium is the fancy, scientific term for salt. If you have normal blood pressure you probably don’t pay too much attention to salt. But if you’re suffering from high blood pressure, you can’t ignore it.

Sodium causes your body to hold onto water and in turn raises your blood pressure. High blood pressure is a leading risk factor for heart disease and stroke. So if you have this issue, you need to check the labels. Speak with your doctor about what healthy amount of sodium is for you.

Then you’ll want to look for labels that have low amounts of sodium or are even free from it. Some foods are labeled as “low sodium” but you still need to look at the label and see where it fits in with your needs.

Eating Vitamins and Minerals

While most people could use a multivitamin each day, the best way to get your vitamins and minerals is through the food you eat. In food, you find these vitamins and minerals in a natural state that’s easy for your body to absorb.

Food labels will give you an idea of what nutrients can be found in a specific food. Look for foods that are high in vitamins and minerals such as calcium, vitamin C, vitamin A, potassium, and beta-carotene.

Making Time for Reading Food Labels

When you’re new at reading food labels, it can see overwhelming. But the more you do it, the easier it becomes. You’ll also have your “go-to” foods that you can just pick up without revisiting the label every time.

Which Koi Food Brand Is The Best Choice For Your Fish?

A comparative study with candid insights regarding the differences between some of the most popular Koi food brands commercially available to Koi keepers within the USA.

One of the questions we receive most often from Koi keepers is “which Koi food is the best?” At first glance, the answer to this question is a very simple one. It depends. But the real answer to this question involves asking a very different question of the pond owner. What are your goals? There are as many different types of people involved in the Koi keeping hobby as there are varieties and quality levels when it comes to Koi fish themselves.

Many pond owners simply want to come home from a hard day’s work to watch a few inexpensive “pretty fish” swimming in their humble backyard water gardens, perhaps with a few water lilies or floating plants. While some hobbyists dedicate a great deal of their time and money to raising championship quality nishikigoi, the Japanese term for Koi fish, to compete in Koi shows throughout the USA and abroad, showing Koi is not for everyone. And determining which Koi food is the right choice for you and your Koi requires you to first decide what type of hobbyist you hope to become.

Many water gardeners decide to add a few inexpensive fish to their ponds after seeing them on sale at Wal-Mart or at their local pet shop. There is nothing inherently wrong with purchasing Koi fish from these sources, but Koi originating from these outlets are largely viewed as “culls” by true Koi aficionados. The term “cull” refers to lower quality Koi fish which are generally disposed of or sold cheaply by Koi breeders to provide maximum tank space for Koi of higher quality which typically command significantly higher prices from collectors once grown on for a year or two.

Just as a human being could technically survive by eating nothing but cheeseburgers and fast food, a Koi fish can also technically survive by eating a lower quality Koi fish food. In fact, Koi are scavengers in the wild and can survive just fine by eating algae and other waste found naturally in your pond or water garden. But there is a difference between surviving and flourishing, and when it comes to Koi fish, the quality of food being used is major factor to overall fish health, maximum growth, and color conformation.

uot;_new” rel=”nofollow” href=”http://www.calponds.com/Koi-Fish-Food-c-7090.html”>Koi food brands that are most often milled in bulk, which commonly stay in a warehouse for one, two, or sometimes three years before they are finally sold to a retail customer. Value Koi food brands offer a significant cost savings over top-tier premium brands, which explains their popularity.

It should be pointed out the question of which fish foods on the market are truly worth of being classified as “premium” brands is also a topic of debate. Many Koi fish foods on the market which we typically classify as mid-grade or staple foods, are actually named “premium foods” by their respective manufacturer. This is yet another reason why choosing the right Koi food for your fish can be a challenge for even the most studious Koi keepers.