With more information available than ever before, reading food labels and their "Nutrition Facts" panel can be a little intimidating. But understanding the lingo will help tremendously. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has set legal definitions for many terms and claims that may appear on food labels. The following is a list of key words found on food packaging and what they mean.
No amount of that nutrient
3 grams or less per serving
1 gram or less per serving
140 milligrams or less per serving
"VERY LOW SODIUM"
35 milligrams or less per serving
20 milligrams or less and 2 grams or less saturated fat per serving
40 calories or less per serving
Less than 10 grams fat per serving AND less than 5 grams saturated fat per serving AND less than 95 milligrams cholesterol per serving
Less than 5 grams fat per serving AND less than 2 grams saturated fat per serving AND less than 95 milligrams cholesterol per serving
Food altered to 25% less than the regular food
25% less that the reference food
1/3 fewer calories, 1/2 the fat or 1/2 the sodium (may also describe color or texture if the intent is explained)
10% - 19% of the Daily Value
10% more Daily Value than the reference food
20% or more of the Daily Value
Raw food that has never been frozen or heated
It is helpful to print this out and keep it handy for a quick reference in the grocery store! Good luck!