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Read the Food Label for Calories!

Download Read the Food Label for Calories! pdf document (36k) handout.

Food labels tell you what you need to know about choosing foods that are lower in calories.

Here's what a food label for canned peaches in fruit juice tells you:

  • Amount Per Serving
    The nutrient amounts on the peach label are for one serving. So, if you eat more than a serving, you need to add nutrient amounts. For example, if you eat 1 cup of peaches, you are eating two servings. You need to double the amount of calories on the label.
  • Calories
    The amount of calories in one serving is given (50 calories).
  • Serving Size and Number of Servings
  • The serving size is ½ cup. There are 4 servings in the can.
  • Sugar
    The amount of sugar is shown (9 grams).

The Choice Is Yours – Compare! Which one would you choose?

Canned fruits packed in syrup have added calories. Read the food label to choose fruits packed in fruit juice for a lower-calorie snack or dessert.

  • Canned Peaches (in fruit juice)
    Canned peaches in fruit juice have 50 calories in a ½-cup serving.
  • Canned Peaches (in heavy syrup)
    Canned peaches in syrup have 100 calories in a ½-cup serving – twice the calories found in a ½-cup serving of canned peaches in fruit juice. This is an important difference when trying to lose weight or to maintain a healthy weight.

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Information on this page is taken from the English print version of “Your Heart, Your Life, A Community Health Worker's Manual.” U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Institutes of Health, National Heart Lung and Blood Institute, NIH Publication No. 08-3674, Originally Printed 1999, Revised May 2008.

Last Updated March 2012

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