Nutrition labels on packaged foods show how much fat, salt, and added sugars they contain. This helps you choose healthier options and eat a balanced diet. You can find the label on the back or side of the packaging. It’s a good idea to limit foods high in fat, salt, and sugar, and eat more fruits, vegetables, oily fish, and fiber. Many people in the UK consume too many calories and not enough healthy foods.
Nutrition Information Labels on the back or side of packaging
Most pre-packaged foods have a nutrition information label on their packaging. These labels provide information on the amount of energy, fat, saturates, carbohydrate, sugars, protein, and salt present in the food or drink. They may also provide information on other nutrients, like fiber. The information is provided per 100 grams or per 100 milliliters, and sometimes per portion size.
How to Identify if a Food is High in Fat, Sugar or Salt
To determine if a food is high in fat, saturated fat, sugar or salt, you can refer to specific guidelines that indicate high and low levels for each nutrient. For example, more than 17.5g of fat per 100g is considered high, while 3g or less of fat per 100g is low. Other criteria are used for drinks. Nutrition labels on packaging may also show reference intake information.
Nutrition Labels on the front of Packaging
Supermarkets and food manufacturers now display information about energy, fat, saturated fat, sugars, and salt content on the front of the packaging. This is very helpful when you want to compare different food and drink products at a glance. The labels give a quick guide to the content of energy, fat, saturated fat, sugars, and salt. They provide information on the number of grams of fat, saturated fat, sugars, and salt and the amount of energy in a serving or portion of the food or drink. Some labels also provide the amount of energy per 100g or per 100ml. However, be aware that the manufacturer’s idea of a portion may be different from yours.
Colour-coded Nutrition Labels
Some front-of-pack nutrition labels use a simple colour coding system to help you quickly understand the amounts of fat, saturated fat, sugars and salt in the food.
Green means low, amber means medium, and red means high. If a food or drink has mostly green on the label, it is a healthier choice. If it has mostly amber, it’s okay to eat most of the time. But if there’s any red on the label, it means the food is high in fat, saturated fat, salt or sugars, and you should limit how much you consume. Try to eat these foods less often and in small amounts.