Read Nutrition Labels

Knowing what to look for on food labels can help you make smart choices.

Reading a nutrition label. Look at the serving size, servings per container and calories per serving.  Limit the total fat, cholesterol, and sodium. Make sure you get enough fiber, vitamin A, calcium, and thiamin. Check the daily value percents to make sure your meals add up.

1. Start at the top.

Look at the size of a single serving and how many servings are in the package. Watch out for small packages that seem like 1 serving but are actually 2 to 3 servings.

2. Check the total calories per serving.

Look at the serving size and think about how many you would eat. If you double the servings, you double the calories and nutrients.

3. Watch out for fat, sugar and cholesterol.

Every day, adults should have no more than:*

  • 56 to 78 grams of Total Fat
  • 16 grams of Saturated Fat
  • 2 grams of Trans Fat
  • 300 mg Cholesterol
  • 35g of Sugar

*Based on a 2,000-calorie diet.

The daily amounts for children vary by age. Learn what your child should be getting each day.

Watch Out For Sugar and Salt

Packaged foods are often high in sugar and sodium. Learn here how you can avoid them. Avoid Hidden Sugar and Salt.

 

4. Get enough fiber, vitamins, and other nutrients.

Checking food labels can help you get 100% of the fiber, vitamins, and other nutrients you need. See how much you need of each nutrient each day.

Every day, adults should have: *

  • 25 to 30 grams of fiber
  • 4,700 mg of potassium
  • 600 IU of Vitamin D
  • 1000 mg of Calcium 

*Based on a 2,000-calorie diet.

The daily amounts for children vary by age. Learn what your child should be getting each day.

5. Quick guide to % daily value 

5% or less is low, 20% or more is high.

Check Food Labels

Make the best choices for your family.