Lesson 19.3: Real-World Connection

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Read a Nutrition Label

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requires food companies to list nutritional information about their products. “Nutrition facts” labels help consumers make healthful choices about the foods they buy and eat. The label below is for a well-known fast-food hamburger sandwich. Read the glossary and explanations to better understand the label.

Word Wise

“Nutrition Facts” Label
Serving Size:
The portion on which the nutrition information is based. Serving sizes are based on the amount of food people typically eat.

The measure of how much energy a person gets from a serving of the food. The FDA recommends that boys ages 11 to 14 eat 2,400 calories a day, and girls ages 11 to 14 eat 2,220 calories a day. People who regularly eat more than the recommended number of calories a day may become overweight.

Calories from Fat:
The measure of energy that comes from fat. The FDA recommends that people get no more than 30 percent of their calories a day from fat.

Percent Daily Value:
The portion of a 2,000-calorie diet the nutrient provides. By the end of the day, the percentage for each nutrient should add up to about 100 percent.

The substances that provide nourishment. Both the weight of the nutrient (in grams or milligrams) and the percent daily value are provided. The nutrients are listed in order of importance in nutrition recommendations. Total fat, cholesterol, and sodium, or salt, which are listed first, are the nutrients that have the greatest effect on the diets of Americans.

The substances vital to proper nutrition. It is important to eat a variety of foods each day to get the recommended vitamins needed to stay healthy.

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Read each of the following statements related to the nutrition label. Decide if the statement is True or False.

  1. If you eat only half the sandwich, you will consume about 300 calories.
  2. The sandwich contains fewer than 200 calories not from fat.
  3. The total fat in two sandwiches exceeds the percent daily value for a normal diet.
  4. The sandwich contains the same number of protein grams (g) as the total number of fat grams.
  5. The sandwich has a higher percent daily value of potassium than of sodium.
  6. The sandwich contains the same percent daily value of vitamin A and vitamin C.
  7. The sandwich provides one quarter of a person's daily iron needs.
  8. All in all, the sandwich is probably a good part of a healthful diet.

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Fruity Flakes Quiz

How much did you learn from “Read a Nutrition Label”? Take the Fruity Flakes Quiz to find out.