Dietitians from Dubbo Community Health Centre want to advise the community about the importance of understanding food labels.
“Trying to decipher a food label can be very confusing. Health claims that we see on the front of the pack are never false, but they are often misleading,” Elesha Honeysett, Senior Dietitian said.
“A good example is fruit juice versus cola in relation to sugar content. Many juices on our shelves don’t have any added sugar but can still contain just as much, if not more sugar than many soft drinks”.
This information was recently posted on the Health District’s dietitians Facebook page, Nutrition Matters, and shared in over 8000 newsfeeds.
“In general, it is best to look beyond the claims on the front of the pack and go straight to the “Nutrition Information Panel” or NIP,” said Elesha.
“The NIP will have accurate information about exactly what is in the product. Sugar should be under 15g per 100g and total fat less than 10g per 100g. This is a general guide and there are other products where these amounts should be even less or can be more”.
A Dietitian can help you with learning how to read a food label. They are highly qualified health professionals that can also assist with providing assessment and education on conditions/diseases where nutrition is a factor. These include fussy eating, allergy/intolerance, low appetite, weight gain and prescription of high energy/protein supplements, diabetes, renal disease, heart disease, coeliac disease and other conditions affecting the digestive system and weight loss.
There is a free dietitian service available at Dubbo Community Health Centre. The service operates on most days of the week and is open to everyone.
There are no criteria you need to meet and referral is not required. For more information or to book an appointment, please phone 6885 8999.