It's emphasised more than ever to now be more aware of what's actually in the food and drinks we consume today, but is it really that necessary?
Food labels in U.K.
Food labels in the UK are now displayed on the front and back of most food and drink products, they're simple and also colour co-ordinated to make it easy to the consumer if something is high, medium, or low. There is a traffic light system which is displayed over the following nutritional information: energy (calories), fat, saturated fat, sugar and salt. This really is a great indicator so if you see too many reds or yellows on the front of the packaging, it's more than likely high in whatever is displayed!
Why you should read them
Whatever your fitness / health aims are, you should always be aware of what you put in your body to have an idea if it's good or bad for you, is it going to help with your aims or goals? And could it be harmful for you if you keep consuming it? Knowing this information is key to staying on track and also making a positive change, it's also so simple to see and understand and will give you a great idea to what's good and what's not.
Smart swaps can be made by reading the labels, for example: you may like a particular biscuit brand, but if you was to look at another brand you also like and it has less fat, less sugar and less calories, you're onto a winner! Such a simple change which will take 10 seconds to do, but will make a big change to your health! If you did this with many of the brands you consume, you could save money, be healthier, and still eat the same foods you like! Just by looking at the labels!
Don't go overboard
This doesn't now mean you have you be a crazy robot looking at every single thing you pick up when you do the shopping, some people can become very obsessive checking all food and drink, this isn't always needed, it's more about swapping things you know you could change for a better / healthier alternative. Some foods may be slightly higher in some not so great nutrients, but if that's the brand you like and you don't want to change it, no problem! If you was to check through your usual shopping list, and see how many things you could swap, this could take a little time, but after doing it once, you have a better idea of what options you have, and that is all thats needed to make a change.
These may surprise you..
Pay close attention to the sugar content, we've used the divide by 4 rule on the grams which has given us the amount of teaspoons of sugar in each! Looking at these 3 examples which are usually listed as healthy, all this sugar content tells me different...
Food labels are on almost every food and drink we consume, so why not check it? You can reduce sugar and salt intake, potentially save money and most definitely increase your health in the long run! There's no need to be a label checking robot, but think of things you could change to help reach your health and fitness goals.
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