Subscribe to our Newsletter:
Healthy Diet Plans >>  Articles >>  Diet and Wellness

Eating Smart- Food Choices, Labels, Overeating

Submitted by Pallavi on November 5, 2009

There are a wide variety of prepackaged snacks and ready-made food items that often become a boon for busy mothers and families. However it is important to know and choose what is nutritious from the wide variety available in a store. One of the best steps when checking listing on snacks in a supermarket is to scan through the labels printed on the food item before buying it. Here are some important tips to eat Smart and choose Smart: When buying a prepackaged snack, check whether the size is appropriate for you or your child. Most snack size packages actually contain multiple servings and knowing so can help you to divide the potions before serving.

Although most reduced fat or fat-free products are advertised and marketed as useful in losing weight, one must scrutinize carefully to see whether the fat has been replaced with more sugar. In most cases there is evidence that so-called healthy products that are touted to promote weight loss usually contain large amounts of sugar. The best choice when selecting breads and carbohydrate foods is to opt for whole grain meals and pick up foods that contain at least three grams of fiber per serving.

Another important point to remember is that if the food label is long and contains a number of ingredients that cannot be deciphered, it is usually highly processed and must be stayed away from. Watch out for sugar content not just in the usual snack suspects such as candies, cookies and muffins but also in unsuspecting foods such as yoghurt, fruit cocktails and granola bars. Most food manufacturers are well aware that children naturally prefer sweet foods and hence a liberal amount of sugar is usually seen in children's food products.

Table sugar or processed sugar is the main culprit for causing hyperactivity and other behavioral problems among children and also contributes to oral dental decay while leading to the high rise in obesity rates. Keep a close watch on the sugar content of packaged children’s foods and opt for foods that require as little processing as possible. If you are on a diet, having small sized versions of your favorite indulgences such as mini-chocolate bars or single-serving snack packs can help you to enjoy your treats in moderation.

However you must keep in mind that the tiny size can also lead to overeating and you may lose a track of the number of minis that you have eaten, thus eating more than a regular sized portion. It is best to eat these treats only after a full meal so as to prevent yourself from eating too much of it. Some foods such as granola bars that are certainly healthy may also be over eaten by people who think that they contain negligible calories. Once again look out for the amount of sugar, fat and calories in a granola bar no matter what the advertisements say.
Read more articles from the Diet and Wellness Category.