Pay Attention to Serving Sizes
Nutrition labels and calories mean nothing without the context of serving sizes. However, this number is usually small and easily missed. Serving sizes can be unrealistically small on many food items that claim to be “low-calorie” or “low fat.” In reality, the amount that the average person would eat turns out to be not-so-low-calorie at all. When choosing between different brands or food packages, pay attention to the serving sizes to get an accurate comparison.
Understand the Percent Daily Values
Percent daily values (% DV) give context to the numbers on a nutrition label. They explain the percent of macronutrients or micronutrients that a serving size contains in reference to recommended daily intakes. Generally, anything less than 5% DV is low, and anything over 20% DV is high.
Try to avoid high %DV for nutrients such as saturated fats, salt, or added sugars, and aim for high percentages for micronutrients, fiber, and proteins. However, everyone is different and requires different amounts of these nutrients, depending on their health, age, and other factors.