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Is there any truth behind some of the most alluring captions on supermarket shelves? We take a look at what some of the favourite messages and how you can source true healthy foods. ~Sonia Kaurah Eating a balanced diet is the key to fulfilling dietary recommendations and reaping the benefits of a variety of macro and micronutrients. “Balance” isn’t always easy to define, especially when recommended intakes differ based on an individual’s age, sex, weight, height, health status, physical activity and several other factors. We may not be able to obtain the “perfect” diet however, learning to understand nutrition labels can help us make better nutritious choices. How much do you notice food labels? Does a ‘fat free’ claim on a packet convince you to add it to your trolley over a packet that doesn’t state the fat content? You may notice that food packages are always labelled with the latest “buzz words”. When the media started raving about how great

are faced with an array of food options in the supermarkets? If we scrutinise every label, it would make the weekly shop go on for hours. So here are some fundamentals to make your shopping easier:

their products, but they can however easily mislead you into thinking something is healthier than it really is. They pick and choose which facts to showcase and are very good at manipulating words to their advantage. As a consumer, your best option is to disregard the claims on the front of the package and learn some quick tricks to look beyond the fancy marketing on the front and become nutritional expert!

wholegrain products are, suddenly words and logos for "whole grains" were plastered on packets of cereals, crackers, breads and even sweets! The next fad was low fat, where many manufacturers suddenly began to draw attention to the low fat content of their product, both in an effort to draw in consumers, and to show that they were keeping up with changing wants and needs. No matter what the fad is—low-carb, no transaturated fats, organic, or hearthealthy, manufacturers will try to lure you into buying their product. By law food manufacturers cannot lie to you about the ingredients in

What are calories and kilojoules? We hear the word calorie and kilojoule thrown around all the time, however; do we actually know what is meant by a “calorie”? In scientific terms a calorie is the energy required to heat 1 kilogram of water by 1 degree Celsius. What we usually refer to as “calories” is actually kilocalories (kcal). So what does this actually mean to us? Simplistically, it is an amount of energy that comes from food. The official measure of this energy is a Joule (Kj). If you see “Kj” on a packet but want to know how many calories it contains, all you have to do is divide it by 4.2. The nutrition label usually located on the back of a food packet is the best way to make an informed decision about the calories and nutritional value of foods, rather than just looking at the marketing material on the front. So what should we do when we June 2014

A nutritional information panel (NIP) displays the content of energy, fat, saturated fat, protein, carbohydrate, sugar, and sodium per serving and per 100 grams of food. The “per 100g” column is the best

way to compare similar products with each other. The figures in the per 100g column are the same as percentages. For example, if 20 grams of fat is listed in the ‘per 100g’ column this means that the product contains 20% fat. The data worth ignoring is the Percent Daily Value (% DV), as this is usually based on a 2,000 calorie diet which is the recommended calorie intake for a middle aged man weighing around 80kgs. The percent daily

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PTW: June 2014  

Spanish Actress Mariam Hernández shares her tips on what is means to be healthy. We look at the superfoods and if they are really 'super', t...

PTW: June 2014  

Spanish Actress Mariam Hernández shares her tips on what is means to be healthy. We look at the superfoods and if they are really 'super', t...

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