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· Read and Understand Nutrition Labels
What labels can claim

Classroom Connections:
- Reading
- Math (measuring, conversions)
- Investigating

Examining nutrition labels can be a fun way to bring skills, such as reading, math, and investigating, to life in the classroom. Learning what the claims really mean will help both you and your students make more informed choices when deciding which items to buy at the supermarket.

Below are some examples of Food and Drug Administration (FDA) definitions for words or phrases commonly found on products lining the supermarket's shelves.

SUGARS FATS CHOLESTEROL SODIUM FIBER MISCELLANEOUS

Sugars
   - Sugar free: Less than 0.5 gram of sugar per serving
   - No added sugar: No sugars added during processing or packaging, including ingredients containing sugar (e.g., fruit juice, jelly)
   - Reduced sugar: At least 25 percent less sugar per serving than similar foods

Fats
   - Fat-free: Less than 0.5 gram fat per serving
   - Low fat: 3 grams or less of fat per serving
   - Saturated fat free: Less than 0.5 gram of saturated fat per serving and the level of trans fatty acids (hydrogenated fats) doesn't exceed 1 percent of total fat
   - Low saturated fat: 1 gram or less of saturated fat per serving and not more than 15 percent of calories from fat

Cholesterol
   - Cholesterol free: Less than 2 grams of cholesterol and 2 grams or less of saturated fat per serving
   - Low cholesterol: 20 milligrams or less of cholesterol and 2 grams or less of saturated fat per serving
   - Reduced or less cholesterol: At least 25 percent less cholesterol and 2 grams or less of saturated fat per serving

Fiber
   - High fiber: 5 grams or more of fiber per serving
   - Good source of fiber: 2.5 to 4.9 grams of fiber per serving

Sodium
   - Sodium-/salt-free: Less than 5 milligrams of sodium per serving and no salt (NaCl) in ingredients
   - Very low sodium: 35 milligrams or less of sodium per serving
   - Low sodium: 140 milligrams or less of sodium per serving
   - Unsalted/no salt added: No salt added in processing (not necessarily salt-free)
   - Light in sodium: At least 50 percent less sodium per serving than similar food

Miscellaneous
   - Calorie-free: Less than 5 calories per serving
   - Low calorie: 40 calories or less per serving
   - Reduced/less: At least 25 percent less per serving than similar food products
   - Light/lite: At least 1/3 less calories or 50 percent less fat per serving (can refer to color, taste, or texture if clearly explained)
   - Less: Less than 10 grams of fat, 4 grams of saturated fat, and 95 milligrams of cholesterol per serving
   - Extra lean: Less than 5 grams of fat, 2 grams of saturated fat, and 95 milligrams of cholesterol per serving
   - High/rich/excellent: At least 20 percent of the Daily Value per serving
   - Good/contains/provides: At least 10 percent more of the Daily Value per serving
   - More/enriched/fortified/added/extra: At least 10 percent more of the Daily Value per serving
   - Fresh: In the raw state; never cooked or frozen; no preservatives
   - Healthy: Low in fat, saturated fat, and cholesterol; not more than 480 milligrams of sodium per serving; contains at least 10 percent of the Daily Value for vitamin A, vitamin C, calcium, iron, protein, or fiber per serving

Classroom Connection Incorporation Ideas:
- Have students measure out a gram of the substance of the claim you are investigating in milliliters, then convert the amount to teaspoons and cups. Make observations and discuss the relationships of the various measurements.
- For upper grades, have students convert the amount of grams, milligrams, etc., found in a certain product to cups, tablespoons, etc. Or, have the students convert the amount of an ingredient in a certain product to the percent of the ingredient found in the entire product.

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