2. Made With Whole Grains – Or Not…
Even the least savvy shopper knows that whole grains are healthy. However, even if a product is labelled as “made with whole grains” the truth is that it probably has more refined flour than actual whole grains. In America, companies are not required to provide the % of refined flour to whole grain flour in their products.
The only method you have for distinguishing the real “whole grains” from the not so real is by looking at the order of the listed ingredients. Under law, manufacturers are obliged to provide the list of ingredients used in their products in order of predominance. Basically, whichever ingredient represents the greatest amount in a product is always listed first.
3. 0 Grams Trans-Fat In Exchange For The Saturated Kind
This ubiquitous label gives us peace of mind as shoppers: we know how utterly unhealthy trans-fats are. But remember, just because a product does not have trans-fat does not mean it is healthy. In fact, products with no trans-fats sometimes have outrageous amounts of saturated fats.
Shoppers of good intent can find themselves hoodwinked into buying what they think is a low-fat food when what they are actually getting something like 16 grams of saturated fat. And just so you know, the FDA considers any product high in saturated fat if its content is equal or over 4g of saturated fat per serving.
4. “Contains real fruit juice” or “Made with real fruit”
Real fruit and its juice are good things, moms look for these labels as they calculate just how many servings of fruit little Johnny or Judy are getting every day. When consumers see a strawberry-flavored fruit snack that has a label that reads “made with real fruit”: They automatically think that this juice was made by squeezing two dozens strawberries if not more.