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How are Food Nutrition Labels and Weight Loss
Experience Interconnected?

How are Food Nutrition Labels and Weight Loss Experience Interconnected?

Part 1: Food Nutrition Labels

Food nutrition labels tell the user more information about the dietary value of the packaged food or drink they are buying. These labels offer a tabular representation of nutrients and their respective percentage, and thus help the governing authorities give them a rating.

This also services the consumers because they may see and check what lies beyond the fancy packaging, taglines, and descriptions. By reading a food nutrition label or details properly, they can decide if something justifies its reputation of being in line with their dietary requirements or not.

Here’s the wrinkle: People do not read these labels!

The trouble is that most people do not read these labels properly. Most people have little to no knowledge about the nutrition labels on their food items and often pick the product that has the catchiest tagline or any free offer. We often go the other way around as we look for sugar-free or gluten-free foods, or foods rich in fiber or proteins, and drive ourselves to illness.

Some manufacturers are also at fault to quote figures for a minuscule amount of their product. For example, the food nutrition labels on energy drink powders for young children are often marked with low sugar and fat for the very small size of serving that is impossible to use. This leads the user to use more of the product (and more sugar and more fats too).

Understanding Food Nutrition Labels

This guide will help you understand the mathematics behind nutrition facts and ingredient lists so you could make a better decision about what you eat. If you think you are short on a professional’s advice, you can consult an expert today virtually using this link.

1. Serving Size

If you don’t have pre-portioned food, there are high chances that you’re eating more than the ideal amount. To figure out how much you’re eating, you can use a measuring cup or a food scale to measure the portion you normally eat.

Once you compare it to the advisable levels of nutrition, there is a high probability of your chosen food item accounting for a few more calories than you had expected. For accurate calories and nutrition, you should measure your food according to the serving size.

2. Fats

The next on the list of nutrition labels are fats. Usually confused with unhealthy carbs and excessive weight gain (or obesity), they are essential for several cardiac and brain functions. It is thus advised to steer clear of saturated and trans-fats as much as you can, and take unsaturated fats instead.

Trans-fats are always dangerous. Saturated fats aren’t healthy but you can still have some in your diet in low quantities. While fat isn’t bad for you, you shouldn’t be getting more than 20-30 grams of it per meal, so watch for foods that are rich in fats. Someday your liver would thank you for it!

3. Cholesterol and Sodium

Excess of sodium and bad cholesterol (LDL) is not good for the heart. It is advised to talk to your doctor to discuss specific numbers for each. Consuming salt in excess can lead to irregular blood pressure and blood sugar levels, in addition to kidney-related diseases and water retention.

4. Fiber

The presence of fiber is usually indicated on the nutrition labels. An average man should have 30 to 40 gms per day and women should have 20 to 30 gms of fiber every day. This would help them in regulating bowel movements, as well as in maintaining cholesterol and blood sugar levels.

5. Vitamins

Iron, calcium, and vitamins play an essential role in maintaining general health and prevent issues like anemia or osteoporosis. While some processed foods contain these vitamins, you should try to get most of these nutrients from fruits and vegetables.

6. Sugar

Sugar gets its section on the nutrition label owing to the high level of negative impact it has on our health. Keep in mind that naturally occurring sugar is called fructose and it is found in fruits. Technically, it is the only kind of sugar that is good for your health.

Smart tip: You should never eat a product with too much sugar. A general rule is that if sugar is listed as one of the first three ingredients in the list of constituents, you should avoid that food.

7. The ingredient list

Some companies show the names of ingredients in descending order of weight. This means that the ingredient that weighs the most will be listed first. This can be helpful when trying to discern what exactly you’re eating. The fewer the ingredients are, the better it is.

8. Zero-Calorie foods

Disclaimer: There is no such thing as a zero-calorie food. Any food, no matter how healthy the ingredients are, will contain at least some calories.

So, are such food items a lie or farce? No.

Some nutritious foods (like the energy powders) offer “zero-calorie” because their proposed serving size offers zero calories. However, it is only true for the same amount of serving that is mentioned on the label. If you consume more than the serving size, chances are you’re now absorbing some calories.

These zero-calorie foods also confuse your body and can lead you to eat more because your body would be processing calories that aren’t there. It is advised to stick to simple, whole-grain foods and ignore the fake products with such flashy labels.

Here's a smarter way!

What if you could stay by Mother Nature’s side and end up losing weight in a smarter and faster manner? It is not that difficult, and you can get it all rolling with a lot of ease. We recommend checking with your healthcare expert or nutritionist about How Many Calories Should You Eat To Lose Weight?

You can also ask him to create a diet plan for you so you could keep your calorie intake in check. Working out or doing Yoga would help too. If you think you are short on time, we recommend that you go for live teleconsultations through audio or video conferencing on your smartphone to talk to an expert of your choice.

BONUS: 10 food nutrition facts you should remember!

We sat down with our dietitians and nutritionists about the foods that one should eat to gain or lose weight, or to improve one’s BMI. We ended up discussing how most people are disregarding good health and dieting practices, often with disastrous results.

We have listed 10 facts about your food and its nutrition that you should remember.

1. Eat green vegetables

2. Eat fibrous fruits

3. Go for Omega-3 fats

4. Bask in sunlight every day

5. Drink coffee in moderation

6. Start the day with green tea

7. Don’t eat too sugary, fried foods

8. Stay away from pizzas, colas

9. Prefer fruits, not their juice

10. Exercise everyday

It is important to note that you should go for foods that offer a balanced concentration of fiber, vitamins, proteins, carbohydrates, minerals, fats, and water. This would keep you away from consuming excess calories that would only lead you to faster weight gain and a whole lot of health issues.

Part 2: Fenugreek Seeds

Fenugreek is a useful household herb with pronounced weight loss properties. Its seeds and leaves possess a strong flavor and are bitter to taste, and they have been used in South Asian kitchens for ages due to their immense medicinal and health benefits. One may use them to make curries, dals, and other vegetarian dishes.

Used as culinary additives, its seeds and leaves are packed with vitamins A, B6, C, B1, folic acid, riboflavin, and niacin. It is also rich in minerals like copper, potassium, calcium, iron, selenium, zinc, manganese, and magnesium. They all come together to burn some extra flab on your body and belly.

Benefits of fenugreek seeds for weight loss

1. Apart from treating diabetes and reducing inflammation, fenugreek seeds also help in weight loss. This is because of the rich polysaccharide content known as galactomannan in them. This component is used in food supplements.

2. Fenugreek contains more than 75% of soluble fibers that promote a satisfactory feeling of fullness with the food.

3. Its seeds have low carbohydrate content in them, thus helping you control your weight.

4. To lose weight, it is very important to cut down on calorie intake. Since fenugreek seeds are very low in calorie content, including them in our diet is both healthy and beneficial in losing weight naturally.

5. It contains triterpene glycosides called saponins that help reduce the body’s absorption of cholesterol from fatty foods.

You may consult a nutritionist (preferably online) to know more about healthy eating practices. She can help you understand what exactly your body needs as of now and over some time for its energy requirements. You would also benefit immensely from her knowledge about the foods that you should avoid in most cases.

Nutritional value

Here are the nutritional values for fenugreek seeds:

Fenugreek seed

   

Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz.)

   
Energy 1,352 kJ (323 kcal)  
Carbohydrates 58 g  
Dietary fiber 25 g  
Fat 6.4 g  
Protein 23 g  

Vitamins

Quantity 

%DV

Thiamine (B1) 0.322 mg 28%
Riboflavin (B2) 0.366 mg 31%
Niacin (B3) 1.64 mg 11%
Vitamin B6 0.6 mg 46%
Folate (B9) 57 μg 14%
Vitamin C 3 mg 4%

Minerals

Quantity 

%DV

Calcium 176 mg 18%
Iron 34 mg 262%
Magnesium 191 mg 54%
Manganese 1.23 mg 59%
Phosphorus 296 mg 42%
Potassium 770 mg 16%
Sodium 67 mg 4%
Zinc 2.5 mg 26%

Other constituents

Quantity

 
Water 8.8 g  

The above values are taken from Wikipedia and are verified by USDA.

How to use or eat fenugreek seeds?

Some of the common ways to include this super seed in your daily routine are highlighted below:

1. Soak a tablespoon of seeds in water overnight and strain it in the morning. Drink this mixture on an empty stomach to lose weight.

2. Soak a teaspoon of fenugreek powder or use some raw seeds in yogurt. Have this mixture after dinner every night to boost your digestion system.

3. Boil the fenugreek powder along with the green or black tea and strain it. Drink this freshly prepared tea on an empty stomach to curb your appetite.

4. Heat some fenugreek seeds in a pan over a medium flame. Roast the seeds until they become dry and brownish. Let them cool down first and then grind them to a powder. Use this powder in curries or other dishes to consume it in your daily diet.

Stay by Mother’s nature side!

Staying by Mother Nature’s side does have its own set of pros. The most important one is that you won’t have to check for the relevance of staying along with one type of diet, She would have it all under Her control. It is also incredibly better than relying on medications to set the issues right.

The nutrition labels on Her food items do not come with labels like ‘processed with XX’ or anything similar but can rather be consumed organically. Fenugreek seeds are a good example of how you may lose weight easily and without reading many labels- and that’s just for the starters!