Food Label Terms

food label terms

Food Label Terms

What should we think?

Nutrition claims on food labels are assertions about the amount of a particular nutrient in the food product. Since the label is designed to entice you to buy that particular product, it will help you to know what these terms mean so that you can spend your food dollars wisely.

Here is a list of the some of the most common nutrition food label terms and what is required by the U.S. government in order to make that claim:

Click here for a printable copy of this list.

“High Fiber”More than 5 g of fiber per serving
“Light” “Lite” 50% of the fat and 1/3 fewer calories of regular version of product
“Organic” 95% of ingredients meet USDA organic standards regarding use of pesticides and other chemicals in production
“Good source of” Provides at least 10% of Daily Value
“Low fat"
3 grams or less of fat per serving
Less than .5 g fat per serving
“Trans-fat free” Less than .5 g trans-fat per serving
“Cholesterol free” Less than 2 mg cholesterol per serving, plus 2 g or less of saturated fat and trans-fat combined per
“Low Cholesterol” 20 mg or less cholesterol per serving, plus 2 g or less of saturated fat and trans-fat combined per serving.
“Reduced calorie” At least 25% fewer calories than regular product
“Low calorie” Provides 40 calories or less per serving
“Lean” Provides less than 10 g of fat, plus 4.5 or less of saturated fat and trans-fat combined per serving, and 95 mg of cholesterol
“Rich in”
"Excellent Source of”
Provides 20% or more of nutrient
“Sodium free” “Salt free” Less than 5 mg per serving
“Low sodium” 140 mg or less per serving

Note: Check the ingredient list on a food label if you are in doubt about what is in the product.

Click here to go from Food Label Terms page to Healthy Eating Support home page.

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