Are you nutrition fact savvy when it comes to recipes?

February 28, 2020

interpreting recipes and nutrition facts

Are you nutrition fact savvy when it comes to reading recipes?  While reading a magazine the other day, I came across a perfect example of how easy it is to get tripped up by nutrition fact information provided with some recipes. (Yes, I still read paper magazines and books, especially on my “no internet day” that I try to keep at least once a week.)

Is it included?

See the recipe above? The write up with the recipe promoted serving it with rice and the photo showed the dish with rice. You’ll even see rice mentioned at the bottom of the ingredient list.

If you think rice is included in the nutrition facts for the dish, you would not be alone!  More than one person who has seen me for nutrition counseling who made the same assumption with recipes in similar situations.

That could mean a big surprise if you’re trying to manage your blood glucose, carbohydrate intake or your calorie intake. With my extensive training and years of experience, I knew immediately that rice was not figured into the nutrition facts for this dish.  How can you do this?

What to look for…

First, this magazine did nothing wrong.  It’s their editorial and creative choices that decide what to include in the recipe and what to style it with.   So it’s up to you to be an educated reader.

If you don’t know some very important things when interpreting packages and recipes, it’s easy to think an ingredient is factored into the nutrition facts calculation.

That’s why  I teach people who see me how to confidently make food choices and decisions.  I help them develop skills and habits that stay with them even years after they’ve “graduated” from working with me. This is one of the many important differences between following a “diet”, programs and plans promoted in books or the internet and working with me either in person or over the internet.

To get you started with being more recipe reading savvy here’s a simple, but important tip:

If a recipe does not have a quantity listed next to the ingredient such as “2 cups rice”,
the ingredient has not been factored into the nutrition facts.

If you think about this, it makes perfect sense.  In order to figure out what an ingredient contributes to a dish, you need to how much of it being used.

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Having personally struggled with weight and gut health issues, I understand how easy it is to think that food is the enemy especially with the changes our bodies undergo as we age.  It doesn’t have to be that way!

I love using my extensive education and coach approach to help people realize it is possible to feel better and be healthier while still enjoying their life and food.

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