Can you trust food labels?

Amy's Vegan PizzaCan’t believe that delicious low-calorie ice cream is only 150 calories for the entire pint? Well, your taste buds might be right. “According the FDA labeling laws, a 20% margin of error is allowed in regards to calories, sugars, total fat, saturated fat, cholesterol and sodium (1).” If the majority of your calories comes from packaged foods, you might be consuming a lot more calories than you want or need. Buying snacks is easy and convenient, but they also have a higher risk of cross contamination with other ingredients that may not agree with you, contain bug parts, or be recalled from salmonella poisoning. Make your own treats whenever possible.*

I remember going out to a Chinese restaurant and feeling really full after having only a quarter of the my meal, and thought it was odd because the menu said the meal I ordered was under 500 calories. Well, it turns out, restaurants ESTIMATE the calories on the low end (1). No wonder I feel stuffed when I eat out. Let your stomach tell you when you are no longer hungry; don’t rely on the estimate, and don’t feel obligated to clean your plate.

• P.S. My next book, Slimming Dairy-Free Desserts and Smoothies will be out soon!

1. Source: Larue R.D., Kristina. “7 Reasons you’re underestimating calorie intake.” Blog Post Type. My Fitness Pal Blog. My Fitness Pal. 13, Jul. 2017. Received: 7, Aug. 2107. Retrieved from:

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