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Nutrient Claims – What Do They Really Mean?

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When going grocery shopping and making your food selections, it can be very confusing reading all of the information on the food packages, and in turn trying to make the proper choices. Did you know that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has strict guidelines for food manufacturers on how nutrient claims can be used on food labels and packaging? Make sure to bring this information with you when you go food shopping so you have a better understanding of the claims being made.

Some of the most common nutrient claims seen on food packages are as follows:

Calorie free – contains less than five calories per serving.

Fat free / Sugar Free – contains less than 1⁄2 gram of fat or sugar per serving.

Good source of – provides at least 10 percent of the daily value of a particular vitamin or nutrient per serving.

High fiber – contains five or more grams of fiber per serving.

High in – provides 20 percent or more of the daily value of a specified nutrient per serving.

Low calorie – contains less than 40 calories per serving.

Low cholesterol – contains less than 20 mg of cholesterol and two grams or less of saturated fat per serving.

Low sodium – contains less than 140 mg of sodium per serving.

Reduced / Less – contains 25 percent less of the specified nutrient or calories than the regular product.

Corinne is a degreed nutritionist and award-winning writer. Visit her web site at www.thefoodcop.com.

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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

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