Food manufacturers hide harmful ingredients. How to reveal them.
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There is a huge difference between ready meals. Some products contain mostly healthy ingredients, others are full of hidden fat, sugar, salt and questionable additives.
Jungle of Information
A guide to how we read the packaging is useful because there is a lot of things on the goods and it may be a bit of a jungle to penetrate the information and find what is important when choosing a product rather than another, says nutritionist Gunn Helene Arsky.
She believes people are more aware of what they buy than before.
At the same time, it is constantly increasing the amount of information that some of us are preventing from getting into everything on the package. On the other hand, if you know what to look for, it’s easier to make the right choices and ignore the excess information.
Here is nutrition physiologist Gunn Helene Arsky’s best tips for those who want to shop healthy food:
1. Do you recognize the ingredients?
Check the ingredient list for all food from the store. Does it contain ingredients that you can buy separately and even cook yourself or are there many ingredients you do not fully know?
Acidity regulator, aroma, thickener and other additives are hardly anything you would like to have dinner for.
The best thing is to choose those products with the least of these strangers.
2. Find the main ingredient
The other thing to look for is what is the main ingredient, that is, just after the heading “ingredients” on the label.
The top one is the most, the number two is the second most, and so forth.
This makes it easy to check if, for example, there is a lot of sugar in the product. Also look for the amount of healthy, healthy ingredients.
If you are looking for a pasta sauce that tastes basil, compare two boxes and choose the highest percentage of basil, or, unless the percentage is stated, the product that has the basil high on the ingredient list.
3. Look for Nutrition Declaration
Nutrition declaration is not mandatory, but very convenient for us as customers. Given the nutritional content, four factors should be mentioned and in this order: energy (both kJ and kcal), protein, carbohydrates and fat.
If the manufacturer claims that the product contains little or much salt, sugar, saturated fat or dietary fiber, they are required to provide energy (both kJ and kcal), protein, carbohydrates (including sugars), fat saturated fat), dietary fiber and sodium / salt content.
Missing some of this is the wrong marking – something that testifies to a junk manufacturer.
Also read: Yes and No Fat
4. Sleipe rewrites
Some manufacturers use diligent rewriting. The most common are:
Vegetable oil: Here you can hide from sweet soybean oil or healthy olive oil to unhealthy palm oil. Probably the oil is of poorer quality, otherwise they would have written “extra virgin olive oil”. Palm oil contains a fair amount of saturated (hard) fat, which is not good for the heart.
Concentrates: These often appear in so-called sugar-free products like juices and jams, or in snacks without added sugar. But these concentrates are so concentrated and cleared that the only thing left is sugar and no vitamins, minerals or fiber.
The authorities are working to make rules for this, because this is tricking people!
Mechanical, boned meat (also called MUK): This is quite pleasing and appears in cheap blend products. These are mussels and cartilage remaining when the meat itself is cut. The remains are painted and can, for example, be shaped into the chicken nuggets or cheap cold cuts. Although the protein content is similar to meat, the quality is poorer.
5. Hidden salt sources
In pre-cooked food, there is often very much salt, but it does not necessarily contain salt in the ingredient list.
There are many additives that contain sodium that is not table salt, such as sodium caseinate and monosodium glutamate.
Common table salt is called sodium chloride in the language of the spoken, but when we talk about the salt content of the food, it’s actually the sodium content we aim for. It is sodium that binds fluid into the body and too much salt can cause high blood pressure.
When calculating the sodium content of a food item, all sources are included in the calculation (including the two examples above), not just the table salt itself.
6. Trans fats? Steer away!
In several countries it is illegal to use trans fat in food, but here in the country it is still allowed.
Trans fat is a group of fatty substances that resemble soft fat in the structure, but behave like hard (saturated) fat. It has all the negative health effects that saturated fat has.
In addition, trans fat is found to interfere with fetal growth and increase cancer risk.
Trans fat is found naturally in milk and meat, and the more fat meat and dairy products, its more trans fat. But in these products you will not find it in the ingredient list because it is not added, but occurs naturally.
Transfett can also be made chemically, and you can find it in baked goods, biscuits, muffins, cakes, micropop, fries and other deep-fried foods.
In foods with abnormally long shelf life, such as “fresh” cakes, you will find the most trans fat. In the ingredient list it can be classified as “partially cured vegetable fat”.
7. Reveal the E-drugs
Manufacturers avoid writing “E150d” or “E920” on the ingredient list because many consumers are afraid of E-drugs.
Therefore, they either write the entire chemical name of the substance, such as beta carotene, benzoic acid or sucralose.
But the drugs do not get lost, or better, for that reason.
At the same time it is said that the substances allowed in Norway are approved under strict rules. But you can always limit your intake anyway.
All additives are recognized in the ingredient list by first indicating what function they have in the food, then the name or E number is in brackets. For example, “antioxidant (ascorbic acid)” or “thickener (E406)”.
Then we see what the substance is used for and which ones are included.
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