A Weighty Issue

By on April 1, 2013

I have a friend who told me he gained just three pounds a year. That doesn’t sound like much, but he did that every year for 30 years! That’s an excess of 90 pounds!

He’s not alone. In fact, The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says more than 65 percent of adults are overweight, with 34 percent falling into the obese category.

One way to help avoid becoming an obesity statistic is to pay attention to the nutrition facts panel on the back or side of food packages. This allows you to make smarter, more healthful food purchases.

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Lately, even more nutritional information has started to pop up on the front of food packages, using a wide range of symbols and rating systems that can be confusing.

Matthew Kreuter, PhD, a public health expert and professor at the Brown School at Washington University in St. Louis, and his colleagues on an Institute of Medicine (IOM) committee studied these front-of-packaging nutritional information systems. They reviewed how that information relates to the leading causes of preventable death in the U.S., and studied ways to make the information more useful.

Kreuter and his team say the nutritional information most important to consumers is the amount of calories, saturated fat, trans fat and sodium in food. This is what should be highlighted on the front of food packages.

“These nutrition factors are the biggest contributors to the leading causes of illness and death in the U.S.,” says Kreuter. “People’s lives are busier, and not everyone can take the time to stop and read the nutrition facts panel on the back of the package, so it’s worth considering whether we can make it easier for consumers to make healthy choices by putting important information on the front of the package.”

The bottom line is you should scan the nutritional information before making grocery purchases, whether it’s on the front, side or back of the package.

Here’s an extra tip to help start getting excess weight off: Super-size your veggies and half-size everything else. It’s a quick and easy way to start reducing calories without counting, weighing or measuring anything.

Have a Youthful Day,


Originally posted on Aging Backwards.

About Jackie Silver

Jackie Silver is Aging Backwards and she shares her secrets, tips and shortcuts in her book, Aging Backwards: Secrets to Staying Young, on her Web site (http://agingbackwards.com/), on TV, on radio, in print and in person. She is the anti-aging expert on the syndicated television show, Daytime, one half of The Ageless Sisters radio show, a weekly columnist with The Tampa Tribune, the Aging Backwards expert for TheHollywoodHotspot.com and contributor to numerous Web sites. In addition, she is the National Anti-Aging Beauty Examiner, New York Beauty Products Examiner and NY Charity Examiner for Examiner.com. Silver is a speaker and coach and is sought-after as an anti-aging and beauty expert by the media. Sign up for her free newsletter at: http://agingbackwards.com/ and follow her on Twitter, @AgingBackwards.

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A Weighty Issue