Monday, November 15, 2010

Educated Grocery Shopping

Going into the supermarket can be confusing.  There are so many products and each one makes a different health claim.  A few favorite buzz words are organic, multi grain, reduced fat or healthy.  Just because a food product has these types of words on the label it is not sound to assume that the product is actually good for you.  Reading a nutrition label is difficult and time consuming.  What is a customer to do?

There is a rating system designed to judge the true health value of food.  This system is called Nu Val and it is starting to be used in many grocery store chains.  Essentially, a food gets a score from one to one hundred.  The higher the number, the healthier the food is.  For example, dried cranberries have a score of 4 while fresh cranberries have a score of 100.  Dried cranberries are processed and loaded with sugar.  One still needs to put scores in perspective.  Certain healthful fatty foods like olive oil or nut butters may receive a relatively low score.  Yet, these foods are healthy and necessary, but in moderation.

Food is so important because it nourishes our body.  Knowing what is healthy based on an objective numeric scale is truly helpful.  Food products with health claims are manufacturers' attempts to sell you their product.  Education and knowledge will guide you in trying to feed yourself and your family good food.

Stay healthy & well,

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