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Do You Read Nutrition Labels?

If you only give nutritional labels on food a glance before you dig in, you're not alone — a new study has found that almost all people ignore nutrition labels on food, even calorie counts.

The Journal of the American Dietetic Association study tracked the eye movements of 203 people as they looked at 64 grocery items. Although 26 percent claimed that they "almost always" look at serving size and about a third said the same for both calorie counts as well as fat and sugar content, an eye-tracking device found that wasn't true. According to the tracker, only about nine percent actually looked at calorie counts for almost all products and just one percent of the participants looked at other nutritional components on the labels.

The study's researchers think that more prominent nutrition facts labels (front and center instead of hidden on the side of a box) would make consumers more aware of what they are eating. Do you think they're right? Let us know if you are a label reader when it comes to food — and if you're not, read these tips on how to read a nutrition label correctly.

Source: Flickr User michaelnugent

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Bettye-Wayne Bettye-Wayne 4 years
I check out ingredients first too, Gabriella. I do read labels, but I eat healthy most of the time, so I don't feel guilty eating something fatty-sugary-salty when I'm craving it. The one thing I always look for is hypocritical labels, like 'light' foods with crazy-high fat-sugar-salt content. If it's not healthy then it's not healthy, but I refuse to support companies that misrepresent their products. I also read kids' labels well, you won't believe the garbage people try to feed children now-a-days! One can of Spaghettios has 74% daily sodium- yikes (two servings per can):

The one label I will never read is hot-dogs. I don't eat them often, but I have a feeling if I actually knew what was in them and how unhealthy they are, I'd never eat one again.
Jen4 Jen4 4 years
Yes, yes, yes ... Always!
amber512 amber512 4 years
Absolutely. Too many things are hiding on there! I try and stick to unprocessed foods when I can, but especially if I'm trying something new I have to make sure it doesn't have something that is going to wreck my system.
fuzzles fuzzles 4 years
For the most part. Some foods you just know not to put in your cart! But I zero in on the sodium and fiber percentages as opposed to the calories and carbs,
TiVo TiVo 4 years
The study is interesting to me. I don't always look at the items I buy because I buy them regularly, but I always know it. Make sense? I don't have to read that macros on the same cereal that I buy over and over again.
karinacocina karinacocina 4 years
being a human nutrition and foods student it interests me to read everything the nutriotion facts have to offer.....from calories to ingredients!
Gabriela-Une-Vie-Saine Gabriela-Une-Vie-Saine 4 years
The ingredients are more important to me than the calories or fat, but I still usually check them out for portion size and just to get a better feel of what I'm eating.
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