As you head to your neighborhood H-E-B, you might wonder to yourself about the nutrition information on products that don't come with labels or other products you come across in the aisle. With a little help from our nutritionist and recipe guru, Rosie, here's some helpful info about everyday foods.
For a quick reference, use this guide to nutrition facts for all fruits and vegetables. Fresh fruits and vegetables are an excellent source of vitamins, minerals and fiber.
|1 medium apple = 80 calories||1 medium peach = 40 calories|
|3/4 cup cooked green beans = 25 calories||1 cup Chinese cabbage = 10 calories|
Deli Meats and Cheeses
All of these products have Nutrition Facts. Remember to read these carefully and look for the types of fat contained. Pick the meats that are low fat or fat free (less than 3 grams of fat per serving). Also, check the sodium content for each serving size.
Steer clear of giant buns, muffins, biscuits, rolls or tortillas. Look for breads with high dietary fiber. Read the labels for sodium, fats and added sugars. Buy breads that have 100% whole wheat or multigrain as the first ingredient. Think twice about frozen waffles; they're high in sugars and fat.
Tip: Store reduced-fat or reduced-sodium breads in the refrigerator or freezer to keep them fresh.
Market and Seafood
Did you know that fresh meats are low in sodium? Make sure you choose the leaner cut of meat or always trim the excess fat.
Good choices include boneless skinless chicken and turkey breasts. You can also choose the very lean center loin pork chops and trim off the excess fat. And good news for you grilling pros, grilling is a great way to remove a lot of fat from fatty cuts of meat.
Fish is high in the Omega 3 fatty acids, which are good for our arteries and help reduce bad cholesterol. Make sure the fresh fish you purchase has a clean fresh smell. The frozen fish fillets are a great value because they are processed and frozen while being transported. Canned fish like tuna and salmon are excellent choices, but make sure you read the label for sodium content.
Tip: Avoid processed or prepared meats that are higher in sodium. Look for H-E-B Fully-Fit™ and Fully Cooked™ meats that are lower in sodium and fat. Did you know that you can buy a 2-pound boneless shoulder roast for the price of a kid's fast food meal? Which is better for your family?
Stretch your budget farther with frozen vegetables. Often you'll find that the bigger the bag of frozen veggies or fruit the cheaper the price. Frozen fruits and vegetables last for 6 months in the freezer. It's best to avoid the frozen vegetable or skillet meals with sauces because of the higher sodium the saturated fat content.
Canned or Dried Goods
Canned vegetables are higher in sodium than fresh, frozen or the canned with reduced sodium. Read the labels on all canned or jarred vegetables, soups and sauces.
Canned fruits come is several varieties: heavy syrup, light syrup, in their juice or water. Check these labels for the sugar content and any other preservatives added.
Did you know that dried fruits are higher in calories than fresh? This is because they are dehydrated and take less volume. 1/2 cup of dried Cranberries = 260 calories while 1/2 cup of fresh cranberries = 25 calories.
Sweets, Pastas, Grains and Beans
Cake and cookie mixes are also high in sugar and sodium. When you have a sweet tooth, pick cookies or crackers that are made with whole grain, and are small in size to reduce calories per piece.
Pasta should be made from 100% whole wheat. Experiment a little. Try other grains that are high in dietary fiber like: bulgur, buckwheat, barley, oatmeal, oat bran, quinoa, wild rice and brown rice.
Tip: Skip the quick-cooking pasta or rice dinners. These are high in sodium and fats.
Dried beans and peas are a very economical source of protein and dietary fiber. Try to make one night a week a meatless dinner using beans and cheese. Yum!
When it comes to cereals, aim for at least 3 grams of dietary fiber per serving. It's best to avoid sugared cereals. Become a nutrition champion by adding ground flax seed and omega 3 vitamins to your cereals. It's recommended that women consume 28 grams of fiber and men consume 35 grams daily.
Condiments like ketchup, mustard and mayonnaise are all sources of sodium. Read the labels carefully. Mayonnaise is also high in saturated fats, so use sparingly. Pick jellies and jams that are low sugar or sugar free and use the recommended serving size.
Peanut Butter and other nut butters are high in good fats, but also high in calories. Limit your intake to 1 tablespoon to reduce the calories. You may want to try low-fat peanut butter instead.
Tip: Try dry roasted, unsalted peanuts and almonds for snacks. As with everything, remember to read the Nutrition Facts for the portion sizes.
|5 Healthy Snacks for Work||10 Steps to a Healthier Family|
|Healthy Portion Sizes||Reading Nutrition Labels|