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The Art of Reading Labels

Labels are there for a reason! Most people tend to just look at the the pretty labels that say “natural” and “no trans fats” while they ignore the important information.

We recommend that you start with the ingredients list. The harsh reality is that whenever you see a word that you cannot pronounce, it is very likely that it is synthetic - man made. That means these highly profitable food companies hire scientists to make ingredients in a lab that end up in your food. This is shocking but think about why this is done. These synthetic ingredients modify the flavour for the better (which is why various forms of sugars are added to essentially all foods) and increase shelf life, therefore increasing profits! If you did not already know, Health Canada does not regulate food labeling which is why so many companies are able to add “natural” and “hearty” labels and basically make you feel good about choosing their product.

You should be looking for REAL ingredients in REAL food. Also, do not make the mistake of thinking that because something is labeled “organic” that is is healthy. We have heard of many accounts where people do their groceries in the organic section without reading the labels and then find out they were mislead. Again, you have to follow the principles of the advanced or core plans. If we go buy a box of organic animal crackers, how is that any better than conventional crackers? Yes, they use organic flours and ingredients, but they add a lot of sugar which defeats the purpose in the first place. Remember, sugar = inflammation. Therefore, you have to learn how to read the actual label.

We know that labels get confusing at times. We are going to make it simple for you. Here are the basic steps:

1. Look at the serving size. Make sure you do the math in order to figure out what you are getting in the food

2. Look at the first number of grams of  carbohydrates. If you have anything that is over 10 grams of sugar, that is too much sugar! The exception for this are good fruits (berries). 

3. Look at the sodium content. The maximum amount of recommended salts is 1500 mg per day. If you do the math, you will realize that most people exceed that substantially!

4. Fats - saturated and trans fats are bad. Again, you will realize how high the content is of these fats in a lot of different foods. The bad fats actually try to add to the flavour of the foods.  Some good fates are found in avocados, coconut oil and wild caught salmon.  

We understand that this information is overwhelming but you need to start from somewhere. Take a look at the foods that are in your house right now. Next time you go shopping, allow yourself to have more time to read the labels.

Remember, if you working on your nutrition without having your nervous system checked, you are not as healthy as you can be! Any nerve interference in your body will decrease your body's ability to build health. 

Here is a website that shows the top 10 sodium foods:

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