Wednesday, May 30, 2018


It's no secret that advertisers know how to market a product.  But did you know their label "claims" might be deceiving you?   That's because terms like fat free or all natural are often stamped on foods that are not even healthy at all.  

Check out these 10 misleading claims most often used by manufactures to sell their product, and deceive the consumer.

#1 ALL NATURAL -  Foods labeled “all natural” cannot contain added colors, artificial flavors, or synthetic substances. However, a food labeled “all natural” may contain preservatives, high fructose corn syrup, or be injected with sodium. 

#2 NO SUGAR ADDED - Keep in mind that no sugar added foods likely still contain sugar. Most foods, including fruits, vegetables, milk, and grains, naturally contain sugar. While it is good that no additional sugar has been added, it is important to remember that “no sugar added” does not mean the product has no sugar. 

#3 SUGAR FREE -  Sugar free does not mean a product has fewer calories than its full-sugar counterpart. It may, in fact, have more calories. Sugar-free products often contain more fat to compensate for the taste and texture that is lost when the sugar content is reduced.

#4 ZERO TRANS-FAT - Products that claim zero trans-fat can actually contain up to .5 grams per serving. If you eat more than one serving, this small amount can add up. Check for words on the ingredient list such as hydrogenated oil, partially hydrogenated oil, and shortening, which indicate that trans fat is still present. ↓↓↓↓↓

#5 FAT FREE - Just like “sugar free” claims, “fat free” claims do not mean that that the product is low calorie. These products likely contain extra sugar to compensate for the reduced fat content. 

#6 LIGHT - Although “light” may make you think that the food is lower calorie, it can actually refer to the flavor rather than the nutritional content. For example, light olive oil means the flavor is mild, not that the calorie content is any lower than regular olive oil. 

#7 GLUTEN FREE - Gluten is a protein found in grains that can be harmful to people with gluten allergies or celiac disease. The increasing availability of gluten-free foods is great for people who have problems digesting gluten, but the labeling may be a little confusing. Gluten free does not mean the product is whole grain, contains more fiber, or has fewer carbohydrates. Gluten-free products are for people who need them, they will not help you lose weight and they are not necessarily good for you.

#8 MADE WITH REAL FRUIT -  Products that claim to be made from real fruit may not contain very much fruit at all, or none of the type pictured on the box. Food manufacturers do not need to list the percentage of fruit, so a product claiming “made with real fruit” can contain 100% fruit or 1% fruit.

#9 LIGHTLY SWEETENED - Although the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has definitions for reduced sugar, no added sugar, and sugar free, “lightly sweetened” has no regulations associated with it. Therefore, you cannot be sure how much sugar the product actually contains by looking at the packaging; you must read the nutrition facts label. 

#10 CATCHY CLAIMS - Food labels often make claims about the benefits of their brand, like “cholesterol free” and “fat free” that can be misleading on certain products. For example, a brand of vegetable oil claiming to be “cholesterol free” may seem healthier than the other vegetable oil brands, but since vegetable oil is a plant product, it does not naturally contain cholesterol, so all the vegetable oil brands are cholesterol free. Likewise, fruit juice brands claiming to be “fat free” are not healthier because fruit juice is naturally fat free. 

Be wary of claims like these on food labels and make sure to do a “common sense” check before making your selection. 

The best way to get the truth about a product is to read the Nutrition Facts label (for label reading tips CLICK HERE ).  ♥

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