How Misleading Food Labels are a Health Disaster

One of the easiest ways to separate the healthy foods from the unhealthy one is reading food labels. These should help and you will come home with healthy foods. After all, the major and only purpose of food labels is to ensure consume protection.

Food manufacturers must be totally honest when they paste label on any food product. Whatever is inside the package must be reflected on the food label. As a matter of fact, law requires the companies to disclose to the consumers what is inside the pack of a food product.

They follow the law but not in total honesty. And especially if you are not able to read between the lines of these misleading food labels, then the health of your family is on the line.

Facts about misleading food labels

Most of us are not aware of how the food companies slip unhealthy ingredients in foods in the guise of law and then either lie about the existence of these or hide behind the law.

Consumers should be rightly agitated about it because it is no less than an outrage. But wait a minute. Isn’t some government regulating agency out there which is monitoring these food producers on behalf of the consumers?

Isn’t this agency’s mandate to protect the consumers against misleading food labels? As a matter of fact this is exactly the job of FDA. They regulate what is posted on the food labels but still there are gaps.

You must be sure that the food manufacturers have read these rules in more detail than anyone else and know exactly how to circumvent these. We can take the example of trans fats. Trans fats gets produced in the process of converting liquid vegetable oil into solidified form.

Trans fats are extremely bad for your health. They give you spikes in bad cholesterol (LDL) levels and cause a decline in the good cholesterol (HDL) levels. Doctors have long been pursuing the patients to stay away from trans fats because of the substantial heart risk these bring.

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Trans fats clog up the inner walls of the arteries which might lead to a heart attack or a stroke. They can really damage your body and clip your life span. Trans fats also give a rise in your triglyceride levels which can cause diabetes, hardened blood arteries and other types of life affecting diseases and conditions.

How to read food labels

Because of the awareness about these bad fats, many companies want to ensure that their misleading food labels read a big zero when you look at the trans fats content there.

This must be a relief. A zero means there are no trans fats in the product. But there is a catch. According to FDA rules a product can claim to print zero trans fats if it has less than 0.5 grams of trans fats per serving.

It does not appear to be something big. But since this amount is per serving, you can quickly consume a lot more than the safe limit by taking more than one serving. And that is exactly what most people end up doing.

That’s right, you can eat a lot of unhealthy trans fats and expose your body to dangers of it. So why do companies have to use trans fats if it is so bad for the health of the people.

For one thing foods can stay fresher for longer time by adding trans fats. Spoiled foods do not sell. And by increasing the “good by” date into future, the company gets longer shelf life of food products and hence more profits, even if it is at the cost of consumers health.

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In the end, misleading food labels are about profits for the company and not for the health of the consumers. In the presence of labels being misleading, how can one ensure that the family gets to eat only healthy foo?

You need to learn how to read food labels. When you buy food products, look for a phrase like “partially hydrogenated”. This phrase is a strong clue that the food product contains trans fats.

All these processed foods develop trans fats during the process of their preparation. There can be a food label saying that there is no trans fats, when in reality its trans fats are within the limit allowed by FDA.

And there is something more bad too. Some of these foods contain addictive additives which can make your body crave for more just like you get addiction of nicotine.

These ingredients trigger your body to demand for more of that food. It is precisely the reason that you can sometimes overeat and get out of control in case of certain foods.

You seem to have lost all the willpower. You will keep eating until you have eaten several servings in one session of eating – all knowing that it is bad for your health. But do not blame yourself, it is hardly your fault.

These product manufacturers are well aware that in order to sell their product off shelves, there has to be a demand for these. And there can not be any better way of creating demand than by adding addictive ingredients to food.

So when you hear someone say that “i am addicted to — food”, you should not doubt the truth. Your best bet is to get yourself educated about reading this misleading food labels.

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