Almost all foods now display nutrition facts labels. Today’s labels are easier to read, but can still be confusing.
Pay close attention to the serving size, and servings per container. The sizes are usually much smaller than what the eye feels is a proper portion. Americans have a tendency to engage in portion distortion. Everything is super-sized; this has contributed to an epidemic in obesity across the country.
Weight loss surgery patients must consume foods that are dense in protein and low in sugar and carbohydrates. Sugar and carbohydrates not only slow or stop weight loss progress but may cause the “dumping syndrome” in gastric bypass patients.
Weight loss surgery patients are asked to consume no more than 50g. of carbohydrates a day. However, if a food is high in dietary fiber the grams of dietary fiber can be subtracted from the total carbohydrate count to get the net carbohydrates.
13g – 3g Fiber = 10g Net Carbs
When something says it is free, for example fat free, it means that a food contains no amount or very small amounts of these nutrients:
- Saturated fat
Calorie-Free means fewer than 5 calories per serving.
Fat-Free means less than 0.5 grams of fat per serving.
Labels use this claim on all foods that one can eat often without going over the limit for one or more of these nutrients:
- Saturated fat
What the Label Means
- Low-saturated fat: 1 gram or less per serving
- Low-fat: 3 grams or less per serving
- Low-cholesterol: 20 milligrams or less and 2 grams or less saturated fat per serving
- Low-sodium: 140 milligrams or less per serving
- Low calorie: 40 calories or less per serving
Lean and extra lean
Labels use these claims to describe the saturated fat and fat content of meat, poultry, and seafood and game meats.
- Lean: less than 10 grams of fat and 4.5 grams or less of saturated fat, and less than 95 milligrams of cholesterol per serving
- Extra lean: less than 5 grams of fat, less than 2 grams saturated fat, and less than 95 milligrams of cholesterol per serving
Find more answers to Frequently Answered Questions here.