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Showing posts with label Information On Nutrition. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Information On Nutrition. Show all posts

Understanding Nutrition Labels - Important Information

Friday, February 24, 2012

If you see me shopping, you may be puzzled by one thing I do on a regular basis...read nutrition labels prior to purchase. I've been known to spend ten minutes choosing exactly which product will do what I want in the healthiest fashion. That means I read the labels, compare the options and sometimes decide it's safer to make it myself from scratch.

I do this for two reasons. One is to make sure it's going to fit into our dietary needs. If the calorie count is too high and there isn't a good reason for that, I often put it back on the shelf. The other is to be sure it's going to fit our medical needs. Is it something we're allergic to? How about fat content? If the answer doesn't fit these needs, I don't buy it.

It took a while for me to begin to understand both the nutrition label and the ingredients list. I don't claim to know what all of those chemicals are, but if the list of chemicals is longer than the list of actual food ingredients, I'm pretty sure I don't want it. One sort of ingredient I do check for are sulfites and metabisulfites. These can cause me a severe asthma attack on the first bite.

Now for the nutrition label itself. The first two things on it are the serving size and calories per serving. You need to check these, even if it seems logical that what you are buying is one serving. Many times that is not the case. Take a 20 oz soda. The information on it is for a single serving, but there are nearly three servings in the bottle. That can cause your entire day's calorie count to be off a significant amount.

Next to the calorie count is the total calories from fat. This number refers to how many of those total calories are associated with one of the many types of dietary fat. It can be confusing, because the next set of numbers indicate how much of each type of fat in the product. Some fats are better for you than others. If it is high in mono or poly unsaturated fat, it is much better than saturate and trans fats.

Cholesterol is a type of fat also, but it is listed separately, and usually by type if there is more than one type present. HDL cholesterol is the healthy kind, while LDL is not. It's a good idea for everyone to watch these numbers, but if you have cardiovascular disease, it's imperative.

Under the fats and cholesterol is how much sodium is in the product. Sodium can be read as salt, but that isn't always the case. There are other types of sodium, and all of them can be problematic, especially if you have high blood pressure or kidney disease.

Carbohydrates can be good or bad, depending on what type they are. Simple carbs, like sugar, are likely to cause more problems than complex carbs, like those found in whole grains. To make it easier to understand, dietary fiber and the sugar content is listed next. The higher the fiber and lower the sugar, the better. Protein counts can be very important. If you have gout or kidney disease, you may be on a low protein diet.

Nutrients are mentioned last on the general nutrition label. It's done by percentage of the recommended daily allowance based on a 2000 calorie diet, so the percentages may be off slightly depending on how much you actually consume. There may also be footnotes with the percentages of the fats, etc. based on a 2000 and/or 2500 calorie diet.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/4713146

Nutritional Information Of Vegetables

We all know that eating vegetables are healthy. However, most of us do not pay any attention to the nutritional information of these vegetables. The US Department of Agriculture recommends that people should be looking to consume 9 to 13 servings of vegetables and fruits every day in order to get the required amount of nutrients. Vegetables are the perfect food choice for people looking to lose weight, as they are low in calories and also keep the digestive system working optimally.

Some of the important nutrients present in vegetables include the following:

Vegetables are rich in vitamins that are extremely important for several body functions. Vitamin A present in vegetables helps to improve vision, boosts the immune system and encourage growth of bones. This vitamin is present in cantaloupes, sweet potatoes and carrots. Vitamin C, present in Brussels sprouts, bell peppers and broccoli, aids in healing of wounds and prevents common ailments, such as coughs and colds.

Antioxidants are compounds present in several vegetables. These antioxidants help to kill free radicals, which are responsible for several diseases, including cancer, and premature aging. Kale, alfalfa sprouts and Brussels sprouts contain the maximum amount of antioxidants, with kale containing the highest.

Vegetables are low in calories compared to any other foods. One cup of celery contains just 16 calories, as per the Nutrient Data Laboratory of the US Department of Agriculture. One cup of green beans contains 38 calories; while one cup of broccoli, chopped, contains 31 calories. The Harvard School of Public Health recommends that people consume vegetables at each meal to ensure that all nutrients are included.

Many people complain of constipation and bloating. This can be overcome by eating vegetables at all meals, as vegetables contain fiber and water. Vegetables are considered as low density foods that provide all the nutrients without the addition of calories. Hence, they help people feel full while aiding in weight loss. One cut of chopped bell pepper contains 2.5 g of fiber and 93 percent water. Other healthy and low density vegetable is Romaine lettuce, which contain 1 g of fiber and 93 percent of water in each serving.

If you do not eat vegetables regularly, now is the time to change your eating habits. Make sure that you consume lots of vegetables during lunch and dinner, as it will reduce the chances of suffering from a stroke or getting diagnosed with a heart ailment. The vegetables will also help lower elevated blood pressure and protect your body from malignancies.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/6720343

Information On Nutrition Provided At The Olive Garden

One of America's largest restaurant chains is that of the Olive Garden. They are well known and have many loyal patrons all over the country because of which there are now over one hundred and forty Olive Gardens. Initially started in Orlando, Florida the food at this restaurant was enthusiastically welcomed. Its menu is mainly themed in Italian cuisine and has maintained a well balanced menu with traditional and contemporary Italian dishes. The commitment towards the very first restaurant has been given to all the franchises across the nation.

Italian food is renowned to be extremely rich almost as much as it is known to be delicious. The heavy handed use of heavy cream and profuse helpings of many different kinds of cheeses in varied combinations coupled with the size of each helping have more than justified the claim made above. But all Italian food is not just all taste and no nutrition. Italy and its neighboring countries had a wide variety of fruits and vegetables that grew across the land and each of those were crafted beautifully into a multitude of traditional dishes. Also Italians made use of a variety of different meats and game which improved their food's health quotient. All this was kept in mind when making the Olive Garden menu.

Contrary to popular belief taste is not directly proportional to the amount of cheese added or the inclusion of fried foods. Even healthy dishes can be chock full of taste. A standing example of this is the Olive Garden. Here there are a number of main course dishes and appetizers that are grilled and baked as opposed to fried so that they reduce your fat intake but still taste great. The vitamin and other nutritional value of food is maintained properly so you can get a well balanced meal.

People believe that eating healthy food is basically trying to cut fats, carbs and taste out of the food you consume. This is a total myth. Eating each nutritional group in moderation is what you really need to do and the way to do this is to have an idea of the calorie count. The Olive Garden menu provides a caloric breakdown of all their dishes so that you can eat in moderation and also classifies certain standard and signature dishes under 'Low Fat' or 'Low Carbohydrate'. They use fresh vegetable in all dishes and the use of seafood, chicken and other lean meats makes the food both tasty and nutritious.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/5668966


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