The Importance of Reading Food Labels

Don’t be fooled by the banner or main label on a product. It has only one purpose in life, to get you or your child to choose that product over all others. This is the point where the manufacturer does its best to sell his product. It’s also the point at which you must also show the most discrimination and teach your children likewise. All that glitters is definitely not gold.

Banner labelling saying things like wholesome, homemade, natural or Grandma’s is designed to make you think that you are buying something close to what your mother used to bake at home. However, if you inspect the ingredients list, you will find some major differences, including many additives you and your mother have never even heard of before.

Check your children’s favourite cereals. I was horrified to see that some well-known brands contain 40g of sugar per 100g, that’s 4 times the amount already considered too high.

Ingredients are listed in order of percentage contribution by weight. So, if sugar is listed first, it’s the main ingredient. Strawberry yoghurt in which strawberries are listed last, or appear as artificial strawberry flavouring, should be put back, even if the container has appealing cartoon characters which catch your child’s eye.

Avoid ANY product that has a long list of E numbers or unpronounceable words that appear chemical in nature.